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The Los Angeles Lakers soared to victory in the inaugural In-Season Tournament, clinching the title against the Indiana Pacers in Las Vegas.

Post the triumph, the Lakers, with championship aspirations, hit a rough patch, struggling with a 3-9 record over a 12-game span.

In the recent defeat to the shorthanded Miami Heat, led by coach Darvin Ham, the Purple and Gold slipped below .500, securing the 10th spot in the competitive Western Conference with a 17-18 record.

NBA insider Shams Charania of The Athletic reports a concerning development – a growing disconnect between Ham and the Lakers locker room.

According to Charania, “There’s currently a deepening disconnect between Darvin Ham and the Lakers locker room, six sources with direct knowledge of the situation say, raising questions about the head coach’s standing.”

Insiders, speaking anonymously, reveal that the discord stems from Ham’s recent extreme rotation and starting lineup adjustments, causing a fluctuating rhythm for several players on the roster.

Ham’s decision to bench D’Angelo Russell and opt for a lineup without a second guard ballhandler since December 23 in Oklahoma City has raised eyebrows internally.

The Lakers, once a team with eyes firmly set on championship glory, now find themselves grappling with internal tensions under the leadership of Darvin Ham.