Tuesday, May 24, 2022
Derek Fisher Wants To Partner With His Players
By Khari Jones Jr., Contributing Writer
Published July 5, 2021

Sparks guard Erica Wheeler scored 19 points against the Seattle Storm on July 4, 2021 (Facebook photo)

As the Sparks lose 84-74 to Seattle Storm on Mental Health Awareness night, the frustrations continue to rise due to the lack of depth on their roster. 

Derek Fisher made it known he wants to partner with his players. Throughout the game, Sparks gained momentum but fatigue came into play and they lost focus, according to Erica Wheeler.

Fisher likes to give his players room to trust their instincts. “There are times when I try to help and partner with our players when seeing things. I’ll continue to try and find the balance so players don’t look at me too often.”


Despite being down eight bodies, the Sparks continue to make defensive stops but they are struggling to score. Erica Wheeler had 19 points, and Brittney Sykes accomplished her first double-double of the season with 19 points, 10 rebounds and five assists. Other than Nia Coffey dropping eleven points, scoring has been nonexistent for the Sparks.

“It gets frustrating at times, because we get tired, but at the end of the day, it’s our job. When one of our sisters, we have to step it up.”

Sykes says fatigue is a part of basketball. She states exertion of energy is different when you’re down players. “It gets hard when you have foul trouble. We are more than capable of fighting through it.”

The Sparks missed a lot of shots around the rim and Fisher said they need to do a better job of converting easy points, and recognizing when they are in rhythm.

When trying to come from behind in games, Fisher says it’s difficult mentally and physically to finish the job when you spend most of the energy trying to get things together offensively. 

While Nneka and Chiney have been out injured, Fisher says he feels good about the things they have accomplished defensively. 


“Getting healthy is the key for any team to reach its full potential. We’ll get there sooner or later. We have enough to get the job done, we just have to work and continue to fight.”


The Sparks will get a rematch against Seattle on Wednesday at 7:00 PM ET.

Categories: Basketball | Sports
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