Darvin Ham on how Lakers can improve in crunch time vs. Nuggets

The Los Angeles Lakers have lost each of their last eight games against the Denver Nuggets going back about 15 months. While on the surface, it may make it seem as if the Nuggets have dominated them during that time period, that isn’t necessarily the case.

Five of those eight contests were competitive until the fourth quarter, when Denver pulled away thanks to a decisive surge. During those surges, the Lakers looked almost helpless, as they couldn’t get stops to save their lives or execute anything with movement or ingenuity on offense.

They will try to do something to change that trend when they open the playoffs against those same Nuggets on Saturday.

Head coach Darvin Ham talked about these deficiencies and what needs to change if Los Angeles is going to have any chance of defeating the Nuggets in the first round of the playoffs.

Via Los Angeles Times:

“It’s a combination of a couple different things. That’s why I mentioned consistent discipline with our execution, make sure we get the right shots that we know makes us that much more hard to guard,” Ham said of the late-game problems. “And give them credit. They had different guys step up and make big shots for them. We’ve had unfortunate turnovers, unfortunate missed blockouts. And they’re a championship team. So, you have to do the little things.

“The intangibles have to be on point.”

It seems like a lot will have to change for the Purple and Gold if they are to avenge their sweep at the hands of Denver in last year’s Western Conference Finals. But perhaps simply playing better in the fourth quarter would be enough to swing things in their favor.

Story originally appeared on LeBron Wire