Los Angeles Lakers head coach Darvin Ham is in a tricky spot with Spencer Dinwiddie.

Ham needs the veteran guard to acclimate into the Lakers' system as the Lakers navigate a high-stakes homestretch. So far, Dinwiddie — signed off the buyout market on Feb. 10 — has (understandably) struggled to produce.

In five games with the Lakers, Dinwiddie is averaging 4.8 points in 25.0 minutes. He's made nine total field goals while shooting 31.0% from the field and 23.5% from 3. His assists per 36 minutes are down from 7.0 with the Brooklyn Nets to 4.9.

“He just needs to go out and play, man,” Ham told ClutchPoints at Lakers practice on Tuesday. “The guys have totally embraced him. The coaches have totally embraced him. The organization. That's why we wanted him here. He has a huge factor to him, in terms of wanting to make sure he's doing the right things to help his teammates and to carry about the execution that the coaches is asking for.

“And sometimes you just have to go out and hoop. And that's what I told him. Don't worry about making a mistake, man, we'll figure it out. Just go out and play your game. We'll adjust.”

The sticky situation reared its head in Sunday's loss to the Phoenix Suns. In a game in which the Lakers desperately needed help on the defensive glass, Ham opted to deploy Dinwiddie (23 minutes, three points, 1-of-5 FG) and Taurean Prince (27 minutes, team-worst -13) over Max Christie and Jaxson Hayes (11 total minutes). The former two are among the least effective rebounders in the NBA, while the latter two consider rebounding a strength. Christie ranks ninth in the NBA in defensive boards per 36 among shooting guards.

“We were able to get Max in there in the second half and he came in and impacted the game in a positive way,” Ham explained. “But it’s just something we’re gonna have to figure out. That’s what we get paid to figure those things out.”

Dinwiddie is an established vet with scoring bona fides. The Lakers aren't going to abandon him yet for a 21-year-old, especially with Gabe Vincent still out. But, Ham's team is facing an uphill climb into the dance and faces seven playoff teams over the next eight games. Christie, at least, offers familiarity, two-way athleticism, better 3-point shooting, and a more consistent product. Tick tock.