The Los Angeles Lakers will be hosting the Oklahoma City Thunder on March 29th and although the game will be one between two Western Conference contenders, there are stories well beyond that. At first glance, it may seem like a traditional competitive game, but it will also be the first time Derek Fisher plays against the Lakers since they traded him on March 15.
Fisher was a key piece in the Lakers’ past five championships and he was the emotional leader in all of those title teams. More importantly, Fisher and Kobe Bryant shared a unbreakable bond and Fisher was one of the few people Bryant trusted to hit a game wining shot. The game will no doubt have playoff implications for both teams, but it will be an emotional return for both the Lakers and Fisher, Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times writes.
“It’s going to be emotional, I’m sure, for everybody, him and I in particular,” Kobe Bryant said.
However, knowing the two former teammates and their will to win, once the game starts, the rivalry begins. Kobe and Fisher are no doubt great friends, but on March 29th, they will do anything needed to win the game.
“We don’t get five championships by being sympathetic towards each other,” Bryant said. “He understands that. He switches off of me in the post, it’s going to be problems. I’m sure he’ll put an elbow right in my back. That’s why we love each other.”
The game will surely be interesting and expect the Staples Center to give a rousing ovation for Derek Fisher. He guided the Lakers through so many battles, but keep one thing in mind, once Fisher hits a shot for the Thunder, some boos will be raining down the court.