Intel: Lakers' 3-point (guard) approach

Jordan Farmar and Shannon Brown are pushing Derek Fisher for playing time

Originally Published: May 14, 2009
By Eric Neel |

When Los Angeles Lakers point guard Derek Fisher returned after missing Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals because of a one-game suspension, Phil Jackson said Fisher would (of course) be reinstated in the starting lineup.

"That's just the way it is," Jackson said, implicitly acknowledging Fisher's 160-plus games of postseason experience and the 65 wins the Lakers racked up with the veteran point at the helm this season. But if the rotations Jackson employed during Games 4 and 5 against the Houston Rockets are any indication, "the way it is" is not quite the way it was before Fisher was suspended.

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Eric Neel | email

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Eric Neel is a senior writer for and ESPN The Magazine.