Lakers, Derek Fisher not near each other on contract offer

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Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Fisher Trophy.jpgA lot of fans only see playoff Derek Fisher, the guy taking over Game 3 of the NBA Finals in the fourth quarter. The guy who is unflappable under pressure, who embraces the big stage.

But regular season Derek Fisher is not that guy. He is no longer a good — often not even an adequate — defender. He shot 38 percent from the floor last year. He gave the Lakers an inefficient 7.5 points and 2.5 rebounds per game last season. There is a reason the Lakers are looking for a new point guard to play most of the minutes for the team. Father time hasn’t just caught up with Fisher, he’s passed him.

Fisher wants a contract for playoff Fisher. The Lakers are offering a deal for regular season Fisher, the guy turning 36 before next season.

And he may not be back, according to Broderick Turner in the Los Angeles Times.

Fisher made $5 million last season. He wants a multi-year deal at that same rate. The Lakers are offering a one-year deal and a pay cut.

Fisher is represented by Rob Pelinka, who also represents Kobe Bryant. So the Lakers will walk on eggshells a little. But giving Fisher a multi-year deal would be a mistake.

Rumor is that both Miami and Cleveland are lurking around, should Fisher decide to court other offers. For now it is all Los Angeles.

Somebody looks comfortable: Paul George drops 20 in first quarter

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Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.

His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.

George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).

As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.

Is DeMarcus Cousins MVP worthy? “It’s mine to grab”

DeMarcus Cousins

Last season, DeMarcus Cousins received zero MVP votes (the same as every year of his career). Even though he averaged 24.1 points, and 12.7 rebounds a game, which was enough to get him his first All-Star berth, MVP is another thing entirely. Only players on winning teams tend to draw the attention of MVP voters.

This season, can Cousins — arguably the best center in the game — get in the conversation?

He thinks it’s more than just that, he told Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report.

The topic is the 2015-16 NBA MVP award and whether it could be reachable for DeMarcus Cousins.

“Reachable, man?” Cousins told Bleacher Report, his voice rising high. “It’s mine to grab.”

As noted above, the only way Cousins gets into the conversation — fair or not — is if the Kings are in the playoffs (at the very least). He understands that.

“It’s going to take a full team effort,” Cousins said. “I’ll try to play at a high level and bring my team along with me.”

Vlade Divac built a Kings’ team designed to start winning now — as you would expect from a team a year away from moving into a new arena they need to fill. Owner Vivek Ranadive is not about selling hope anymore, he wants to sell wins.

I think Cousins can help provide that.

I’m less sold on the cast around him being able to help.