There’s really no debate as to the greatest player from the 1996 NBA draft. He wore purple and gold as a rookie. He won five rings. And, according to Derek Fisher, the name of said player is … not Kobe Bryant.
The former Los Angeles Lakers point guard and current New York Knicks head coach was asked by Bleacher Report’s Adam Lefkoe how he’d redraft the 1996 rookie class, and Fisher went with a surprising choice for his No. 1 overall pick:
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No. 5 for Fisher was Steve Nash. No. 4? Ray Allen. Sure, makes sense so far. No. 3? Allen Iverson. Okay, so Kobe’s going to be up there, but who’s the other player? Not Stephon Marbury, surely, at No. 2?
No, in fact, Kobe Bryant is No. 2! And the No. 1 overall pick in the 1996 draft should have been … Derek Fisher.
This might have been rigged, folks. Although as Lefkoe pointed out to Fisher, if he went first overall, he wouldn’t be a Laker.