Last night the Lakers extended their winning streak over the Sacramento Kings as the SoCal dominance continues. Today, it is Kobe Bryant that has garnered most of the headlines after the 112-100 road victory. But if you watched the game you know it was Derek Fisher who stole the show.
Bryant’s 30, 10 and 12 were good for the 17th Oscar Robertson of his career. Just for good measure KB24 even put his name atop yet another statistical category as he continues his quest for the title of Greatest Laker Ever.
Early in the first quarter, Bryant surpassed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for the most minutes ever played in a Purple and Gold uniform. Having logged some serious PT over the course of his career in both the regular and post season is a feat that is put in perspective beautifully by Mark Medina of the Times.
Record breaking moment aside, there was still a game to play.
A contest that looked all but over in the third became dangerously close to being a full fledged meltdown late in the fourth. Up by as much as 20, the Laker lead shrank to 8.
Enter Derek Fisher.
The Fisher King continues to prove why being clutch isn’t a trait reserved for moments in June alone. With the Kings having cut the lead to single digits, D-Fish delivered a series of plays that broke the will of the Queens and eventually restored an insurmountable Lake Show lead.
Fisher hit timely jumpers, scored a transition And-1 layup, grabbed a couple clutch rebounds, had a steal and made some good old fashion hustle plays in the span of four minutes, scoring 7 of his 11 points on the night.
Game. Set. Match. Thanks for coming out, Queens fans.
It was if KB and Fish got together before the game and agreed Kobe would set them up while Derek would knock the Kings down. Bryant set the tone early while Fisher sealed the deal late.
Matt Barnes admitted after the game that this rivalry means more to the folks in Sacramento than it does to the hoop heads in L.A. While the Kings aren’t going to draw the ire of Laker fans like seeing Celtic green, it still feels great to hear all those cowbells go silent.
Fisher might not have the resume of Bryant but it is going to be awfully hard not to discuss Kobe’s career without mentioning the exploits of #2 – a number that no other Laker should ever wear again after it is all said and done.