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Fisher says he’ll return to Lakers

Derek Fisher, who was being wooed by LeBron James [1] and the Heat, announced Monday that he would re-sign with the Lakers and play alongside Kobe Bryant [2] for a 12th season.

“I have decided to continue with Kobe, continue with our teammates and the fans of Los Angeles,” Fisher said in a statement on his website. “While this may not be the most lucrative contract I’ve been offered this offseason, it is the most valuable. I am confident I will continue to lead this team on and off the court. Let the hunt for six begin.”

Fisher has started every regular-season game for the Lakers the last three seasons after returning for a second stint in Southern California. After his first eight seasons in LA, he played two seasons with the Warriors and one with the Jazz [3]. He’s won five titles, including the 2010 crown that came at the expense of the Celtics [4].

“At the end of the day, there’s one person I could not turn away from,” Fisher said. “Kobe Bryant asked me to stay but supported whatever decision I made. He and I have played together for 11 seasons, came into the league together as kids, and has been loyal to me even when others had doubts.”