Mike Brown needs to make his mark but he also must pay respect to the Lakers that have been there and done that. Such is the task of a coach trying to make his way in refocusing a former championship caliber team.
One of Brown’s tasks is to figure out the best way to utilize a largely ineffective yet still valuable Derek Fisher.
Thus far Coach Brown has remained steadfast in his belief of Fisher remaining a starter. Thus far that has yet to be seen and could remain that way until the regular season opens in one week on Christmas day.
D-Fish is among those most affected by the lockout. Unlike teammate Metta World Peace, Fisher’s conditioning – or lack thereof – was dealt a deadly blow due to his heavy involvement in the CBA negotiations. While World Peace was busy failing on reality dancing contests, Fisher was hard at work helping to save the season.
As a result, Coach Brown held Fisher out of the intra-squad game on Friday and will likely do the same in the preseason opener against the Clippers tomorrow.
Even without the lockout Fisher’s status was uncertain. His inability to defend the quicker point guards in the NBA has long been an issue. Last season that issue came to a head. Now it is up to Coach Brown and his defensive prowess to figure out a solution to this ongoing problem.
Steve Blake was a massive disappointment last year but even on his game Blake isn’t an elite option.
No matter what comes of the season for Fisher and the Lakers there is little doubt that this team can count on their veteran leader for much more than moral support. It is pretty obvious that Fisher’s most productive days are behind him. So too are the Lakers’ title hopes if they’re counting on Fisher to lead the charge. He’s not necessarily the problem but, in reality, Fisher is no longer a part of the solution either.