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Lakers Season Countdown: 2 days, Derek Fisher

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In this series, we will count down the days until the Lakers first regular season game on October 28th. Each day we will discuss who wore that number best, and who wears it now or who wore it last.

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Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

We're getting ready for a brand new season of Los Angeles Lakers basketball, so to count down the days we'll be looking at the best Lakers to wear the number. We'll continue at 2 days until the regular season begins, with the man with all the intangibles.

Who wore it the best: Derek Fisher

(Credit: National Basketball Association, Getty Images)

Derek Fisher was drafted with the 24th overall pick in the 1996 NBA draft. He played sparingly behind Nick Van Exel during his rookie and sophomore season, and then behind Derek Harper in 1999, and then Ron Harper in 2000. Fisher was a key contributor to the Lakers teams that 3-peated, but was bothered by injuries during 2001 & 2002. The 2003 season would be Fisher's first full gig as the Lakers starting PG, as he started every game. However the Lakers would go on to lose in the playoffs against the Spurs. Looking to improve the roster, the Lakers brought in Gary Payton to be the starting point guard. Fisher's minutes would drop from 35 to 21.

In search of a starting role, Fisher signed a 6 year deal with the Golden State Warriors. He played there for 2 seasons before being traded to the Utah Jazz. After 1 year in Utah, he asked to be released so that he could sign with either a New York or LA team so that he could get treatment for his daughter who had eye cancer. In 2007, Fisher rejoined the Lakers on a 3 year contract. Now a full time starter for the Lakers, he helped lead the team to Championships in 2009 & 2010. After the 2010 season, Fisher signed another 3 year deal with the Lakers, turning down more money elsewhere.

After an early playoff exit in 2011 and Derek's productivity starting to dramatically decrease during the 2012 season, the Lakers traded Derek Fisher to the Houston Rockets at the trade deadline. The Lakers wanted a younger, quicker point guard, and traded for Ramon Sessions. Houston immediately waived Fisher, who cleared waivers and signed with the Thunder for the rest of the season. The following year, Fisher joined the Mavs, but was injured 9 games into the season. The Mavs released him, and after his rehab, he again signed with the Thunder where he played until the 2013-14 season. He retired after that season, but immediately became the head coach of the New York Knicks for the 2014-15 season. He is still currently the head coach of the Knicks.

Seasons w/ Lakers

Years

ppg

rpg

apg

spg

bpg

mpg

Derek Fisher

13

1997-2004 & 2008-2012

7.9

2.1

2.9

1.1

0.1

25.4

Who wore it last: Wayne Ellington

Wayne Ellington played at the University of North Carolina for 3 years before declaring for the 2009 NBA draft. He was selected 28th overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves. After 3 years in Minnesota, Ellington was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies where he would appear in 40 games before being traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers where he would have his best statistical season. The following year, he was a free agent and signed with the Dallas Mavericks, but saw very little playing time.

In 2014, Ellington signed a 1 year deal with the Lakers. His numbers would jump back up to what he was putting up in Cleveland. He appeared in 65 games, while starting 36 of them due to several Laker player injuries. in 25.8 minutes per game, Ellington averaged 10.1 points, 3.2 rebounds, 1.6 assists & 0.5 steals. He missed the last quarter of the season with a shoulder injury. Ellington is currently under contract with the New Jersey Nets for the upcoming 2015-16 season.

#2 - Who has worn it:

Kenny Carr (1978-1979)

Rory Sparrow (1992)

Anthony Miller (1995-1996)

Derek Fisher (1997-2004 & 2008-2012)

Aaron McKie (2006-2007)

MarShon Brooks (2014)

Wayne Ellington (2015)

Brandon Bass (2016 - future)