Player Capsule: Chris Duhon

May 07, 2013 12:42 pm PDT
Chris Duhon

Having come to the Lakers alongside Earl Clark in the Dwight Howard trade over the summer, veteran point guard Chris Duhon entered the 2012-13 season recognizing he'd be in a reserve role behind both Steve Nash and Steve Blake, hoping to contribute where he could.

With various injuries to both Steves ahead of him on the depth chart, Duhon split time with Darius Morris in starting nine games and appearing in 46 games, averaging 6.9 points and 5.4 assists in his starts, and 2.9 points with 2.9 assists overall in 17.8 minutes per game. Duhon shot 36.3 percent from three-point range on the season, including 42.1 percent in his starts.

He closed the campaign by playing the entire second half of L.A.'s Game 4 loss to San Antonio in the first round of the playoffs, contributing a team-high seven assists with his 11 points.

“This is probably the craziest year I’ve been apart of," said Duhon in his exit interview. "Everything that could go wrong went wrong, with the talent, the expectations we had. We definitely had a team that was capable of winning a championship, we just never had a chance to put it together. It’s tough, and it’s kind of disappointing – coming into training camp, we felt that. We felt like we had an opportunity, and it just never came together.”

It wasn't a particularly fulfilling season from an individual or team perspective for Duhon or most of his teammates, but the Duke product certainly did get a lot out of playing with future Hall of Famers, specifically referring to Kobe Bryant and Nash.

“They love this game," he said. "They do whatever it takes for them to be great. Kobe watches film at halftime, of his shots, turnovers, defensive plays and things he can do better in the second half. Steve Nash is consistently in the weight room trying to get his body right, first one here, last one to leave. It’s amazing how you see these guys come to work every day. That’s why they’re the best. Kobe’s going to be one of the best players ever. Nash is going to be one of the best point guards, and (that is for) a reason.”

Duhon remains under contract for one more season, and while he'd like to continue to play, also relayed his hope to be a coach when he retires.

With his experience around the game, knowledge of hoops X's and O's and ability to get along with teammates and coaches, that seems a very strong likelihood.