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Los Angeles Lakers Unsurprisingly Fire Darvin Ham

With LeBron James and Anthony Davis having to decide whether to use their player options for the 2024-25 season, the Los Angeles Lakers have some questions to answer this offseason. One question is who will be their new head coach, as they fired head coach Darvin Ham on Friday. The firing comes after the Lakers were eliminated from the playoffs for a second straight year.

According to ESPN, the Lakers also fired the entire coaching staff.

"We greatly appreciate Darvin Ham's efforts on behalf of the Lakers and recognize the many accomplishments achieved over the past two seasons including last year's remarkable run to the Western Conference finals," Lakers vice president of basketball operations and general manager Rob Pelinka said in a statement. "We all want to thank Darvin for this dedication and positivity. While this was a difficult decision to make, it is the best course of action following a full review of the season. The organization will remain unwavering in its commitment to deliver championship-caliber basketball to Lakers fans around the world."

Ham had been the Lakers coach for two seasons and had two years left on his contract. In his two years with the Lakers, he had a 90-74 regular-season record and a 9-15 playoff record, which doesn't include two play-in tournament wins. This season, he helped the Lakers win the first-ever in-season tournament championship.

So, who will be the Lakers' next head coach? Whoever it is will be the Lakers' fourth coach since 2018 and their 8th coach in 14 years. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Mike Budenholzer, Kenny Atkinson, JJ Redick, and possibly Ty Lue will be candidates. Budenholzer has had the most success of the possible candidates. He has a 484-317 record over 10 seasons, won a championship with the Milwaukee Bucks in 2021, and has won NBA Coach of the Year twice. Atkinson had a 118-190 record and made the playoffs just once with the Brooklyn Nets. Redick is a former NBA player with no coaching experience, while Lue is the coach of the Los Angeles Clippers.

I think Budenholzer will be the Lakers' new head coach. He is the most accomplished coach on the roster and the best fit for the Lakers. After being eliminated from the playoffs the last two years, Budenholzer can lead the Lakers to the NBA Finals and another title.

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