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A potential Darvin Ham replacement is off the board

By now, most fans of the Los Angeles Lakers have turned against head coach Darvin Ham, and it seems as if his players may have turned against him in earnest as well.

There is no indication, at least not yet, that Ham is truly on the hot seat in a real sense, even though his team trails the Denver Nuggets 0-3 in its first-round playoff series. But if he is to be fired, the Lakers would need to conduct a thorough coaching search.

If LeBron James sticks around past this season, they will remain in win-now mode, which means hiring someone who can get the job done right away, even if it would mean hiring another first-time NBA head coach.

Some fans have tossed Juwan Howard’s name as someone who could be a decent choice to replace Ham. But Howard, who was recently fired after five seasons as the University of Michigan’s head coach — is heading to the Brooklyn Nets as an assistant coach.

The Lakers interviewed Howard two years ago after they fired Frank Vogel. General manager Rob Pelinka was teammates with Howard at Michigan during the early 1990s as part of the school’s famed Fab Five team.

Howard was reportedly L.A.’s first choice to be its next coach at that time, but he turned down its offer.

He will now be a member of new Nets head coach Jordi Fernandez’s staff. The Nets have a young team that includes Mikal Bridges, the two-way wing acquired in last year’s Kevin Durant trade who has since emerged as a borderline star.

Story originally appeared on LeBron Wire