The Lakers beat the Celtics 91-84 on Tuesday night in a pivotal Game 3 win in the NBA Finals. With Kobe Bryant having an off night and not scoring almost the entire fourth quarter, point guard Derek Fisher stepped up and took over for the Lakers. Fish scored 11 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter, including a huge coast-to-coast layup and one with under a minute left that gave the Lakers a seven point lead. Because Fisher had been widely viewed as the weak link in the Lakers’ starting five, coming through for the team in such a crucial situation overwhelmed him. After the game, Derek Fisher was emotional in his interviews:
I will raise my hand and admit I was one of the people who said the Rondo/Fisher matchup would be a big advantage for Boston, but I did note that Fisher has the ability to makeup for his spotty defense with good offense. So far he’s done that: Fisher shot 47% on threes against the Thunder, had a big Game 3 in Utah, and he shot quite well in Games 3 and 5 against the Suns. On another team with less talent, Fisher would be exposed. On the Lakers where he’s a role player, Fisher has been making it count and his Game 3 performance may turn out to be the difference in this series. (That, and Ray Allen’s 0-13 FG after a record-breaking performance in Game 2).
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