Lun. Abr 15th, 2024


LOS ANGELES — After Lakers point guard D’Angelo Russell made history in Monday’s 136-105 win over the Atlanta Hawks by tying Nick Van Exel’s franchise record for 3s in a season with 183, coach Darvin Ham granted him any shooter’s dream endorsement.

«He has a green room,» Ham said of Russell. «Not a green light. A green room.»

Russell went 6-for-10 from beyond the 3-point line against the Hawks, finishing with 27 points and 10 assists as L.A. romped, shooting 57.8% as a team and 41.7% from beyond the arc.

«I mean, I just appreciate him trusting me to that extent,» Russell said of Ham. «Definitely try to feel like I earned something like that and it wasn’t given. So, to know that that’s something I put the work in to do and put the work and continue to do, it seems normal for me, humbly.»

Russell is shooting a career-best 41.9% from 3 this season — 14th best in the league.

«His prowess from the 3-point line, you know, it’s really, really elite,» Ham added. «And we need every bit of it.»

Van Exel needed 80 games to set the Lakers’ 3-pointer mark in 1994-95, representing the longest-standing season franchise record in the NBA, according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

Russell, who passed Kobe Bryant (180 treys in 2005-06) on Monday, matched Van Exel’s milestone in his 64th game.

«It’s really cool, honestly, just to know that, to get credit for it,» Russell said. «It’s just really cool. I said I don’t want to underdo it, understate it, overdo it. I just feel like it’s really cool to just be a part of something like that. I think I did something like that in Brooklyn, as well. Just to get credit for your game and what you work through and showcase it every night.»

Indeed, Russell set the Nets’ franchise record for 3s in a season with 234 in 2018-19.

More important than the record was the win, as the Lakers snapped a two-game skid. Anthony Davis returned from a corneal abrasion that caused him to miss most of Saturday’s loss to the visiting Golden State Warriors to put up 22 points on 10-for-14 shooting, 15 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals. All five Lakers starters scored in double digits, with LeBron James (25 points on 10-for-14 shooting, 10 assists), joining Russell and Davis with a double-double.

Davis said he told Russell that he could have taken a better attempt at one of his 3s to pass Van Exel’s record on Monday. «He just threw it up there,» Davis said. But Davis was confident that Russell would «for sure break it» in L.A.’s next game, at home on Friday against the Philadelphia 76ers.

«He’s able to get going and fill up the stat sheet with his scoring, and it’s a big thing for him, big thing for us as a team,» Davis said Russell. «Obviously, there’s been a lot going on around D-Lo, and just to be able to do that and us embrace him and he sees that, feels the love, that’s good for him.»


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