After becoming the new coach of the NY Knicks, former NBA player Derek Fisher has quickly let his players know what their upcoming seasons will be about.
Fisher stressed hard work, sacrifice, being selfless, sticking together and doing for each other before, during and after the Knicks practiced at Cristl Arena on the campus of the United States Military Academy, NY Daily News said.
Fisher taught defense for the entire practice, saying the Knicks are building their defensive foundation.
“That’s really where we have to anchor ourselves is on the defensive end. Starting out and through the season there will be a lot of talk about who we are offensively and what we’re trying to do on the offensive end in terms of running the triangle. But defense is the anchor. That’s the foundation to all good and great teams. So we spent two- and-a-half hours on defense,” Fisher said.
Fisher was among those who addressed the team at dinner Monday night, and he spoke about what he wanted to accomplish and didn’t lose sight of where he was.
“We spent some time [Monday] night as a group, just reflecting on the history of this team, the history of this organization, the great accomplishments and success of the past and how it is we all can work together in a sense not to recreate that but create something special of our own,” he said.
Last year’s struggles led to Phil Jackson being hired as president and he ultimately brought in Fisher, his former point guard with the Lakers. Jackson sat in a chair against the bleachers and let Fisher and his coaching staff do all of the talking during practice.
Fisher retired last spring after an accomplished 18-year playing career, including five championships under Jackson with the Lakers, and the former point guard was hired to replace the fired Mike Woodson following the Knicks’ losing 37-45 season. Fisher insisted when he was hired and again last week that he won’t simply be “a puppet” for Jackson − who won 11 championship rings as a coach.
Fisher played in 1287 NBA games, starting in 731 of them. He played for LA Lakers (13 seasons), as well as for Golden State Warriors, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder and Dallas Mavericks. Fisher holds career averages of 8.3 ppg and 3.0 apg in 25.4 mpg.Follow @exnbadotcom
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