Los Angeles Lakers

Lakers Rumors: Highlighting What Derek Fisher Would Bring to LA's Backcourt

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 10:  Derek Fisher #2 of the Los Angeles Lakers looks on during warm ups against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on February 10, 2012 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Chris Chambers/Getty Images)
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Patrick ClarkeCorrespondent IOctober 15, 2012

The Los Angeles Lakers are loaded and ready to contend for another NBA Championship this season, regardless of whether they make another signing or big trade this year.

However, if they hope to win it all, they will need to bring in a free agent like Derek Fisher to anchor the backcourt. 

Fisher, 38, is currently without a team. However, he could find himself once again hitting big shots in Hollywood next spring if he decides to wait out the winter as a free agent, according to ESPN.com's Marc Stein:

...March 15, 2013 is the earliest Fisher could legally re-sign with L.A. Yet sources with knowledge of the Lakers' thinking say that the team is already trying to create a backcourt opening, having made it clear to the rest of the league that Chris Duhon and Steve Blake are available via trade to any interested party willing to absorb one of those contracts. 

There you have it. The Lakers are open to trading Chris Duhon and/or Steve Blake in order to open up a position in the backcourt at some point this season.

Let's take a look at what Derek Fisher would bring to the Lakers backcourt in 2013.

 

Familiarity 

Derek Fisher played 12 and a half seasons with the Lakers after being drafted by the franchise in the first round back in 1996. He has won five championships with the team since 2000, and helped it reach the NBA Finals on seven occasions during that time.

Fisher is clearly comfortable with the Hollywood setting and the big stage on which the Lakers play, night in and night out, at the Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles.

Trust me when I say that Fisher's well-groomed facial hair is as vital to Lakers tradition as Jack Nicholson sitting courtside at every game

 

Experience

Few players in NBA history can boast as much big-game experience as Derek Fisher. Fisher has played in 229 career playoff games since entering the league in 1996, and has started 158 postseason games since 1998.

At age 38, we can either label Fisher as old or experienced. I choose to stay positive. Plus, Fisher has always kept his body in excellent shape and rarely looks over-matched out on the hardwood.

It's hard to imagine the Lakers getting any more experienced with Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, Pau Gasol, Antawn Jamison and Metta World Peace. However, if they added Fisher, they could send a lineup of poised and talented veterans onto the floor in the late stages of games. 

Like Bryant and Nash, Fisher is essentially a coach on the floor. 

 

Big-Shot Ability

Derek Fisher is the poster child for clutch play in the NBA.

From his epic 0.4 shot against the San Antonio Spurs in the 2004 Western Conference semifinals to his countless fourth-quarter threes, Fisher has always been the one player other than Kobe Bryant to take and make the big shot for the Lakers.

Although Fisher is just a 40-percent shooter from the field for his career during the regular season, he is nearly a 43-percent shooter from the field for his career during the playoffs. 

Fisher's numbers from beyond the arc also improve during the playoffs. He is just 37 percent from deep during the regular season for his career, but 40 percent come playoff time for his career.

The numbers don't lie. Derek Fisher has big-shot ability and is just the man the Lakers should be targeting this season in anticipation of a deep postseason run next spring. 

 

Follow Bleacher Report Featured Columnist Patrick Clarke on Twitter for more reaction on the latest NBA rumors.

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