[NBA Playoffs] Almost one year has passed since Derek Fisher dumped the Utah Jazz in favor of returning to his old job with the L. A. Lakers. It's done. It's history. So I guess I should just get over my animosity.
But I'm one of those typical parochial Utah fans who's nursing a grudge. And dammit, I can't get over it.
Like most trusting Jazz fans, I truly believed Fisher last year when he told team owner Larry Miller he had to return to Los Angeles to find the best medical care for his baby girl Tatum, who is fighting a rare form of eye cancer. We all remember the high drama of Fisher's return from a medical trip with his family to New York last year. He rolled into Energy Solutions Arena at mid-game in the playoff series with Golden State. Roars of approval, applause and tear-filled eyes all around. Huge hero status for Fisher.
Then he ran.
But when the Jazz come home Friday night for game three, and with two losses in this agonizing-to-watch series, I'm expecting ear-shattering boos for Fisher. In hindsight, his decision to leave the Jazz looks um, fishier than ever. We have world-class cancer research and eye care facilities at the University of Utah. And even if he could find better options for his daughter in L.A., it's what--a 90-minute plane trip? It's not like most NBA players have to live in the city they play for anyway, and many don't. He could have lived in L.A. and played for Utah, still.
Last night, TNT commentators were going on about Fisher taking great pleasure in revealing all of the Jazz's plays to Laker coaches. That made me even more bitter. But I guess when Kobe Bryant calls you, urges you to come back and pick up where you left off, it's tough to say no.
Too bad. I really, really liked Derek Fisher at one time. Trusted the guy, too. All I can say is he'd better wear ear plugs tomorrow night when he takes to the ESA floor. (Holly Mullen)