Tomjanovich to try to resign free-agent guard

Updated: July 8, 2004, 11:41 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

His deal to become Lakers head coach still not complete, Rudy Tomjanovich is already working to stop the damage from the Lakers' tumultuous offseason.

Tomjanovich planned to speak Thursday with Lakers free-agent Derek Fisher in Los Angeles, the guard's agent, Mark Bartelstein, told ESPN's David Aldridge.

Fisher, 29, opted out of the remaining two years of his contract after the NBA Finals and became an unrestricted free agent, meaning he can sign with any team without Los Angeles having an opportunity to match.

The Houston Rockets are among the many suitors for Fisher, who wants to start for a team and may not be able to in Los Angeles next season after Gary Payton opted to return.

Fisher's miracle shot with 0.4 seconds left in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals beat the Spurs and helped propel the Lakers to the Finals.

Tomjanovich is putting the finishing touches on a contract to replace Phil Jackson as head coach of the Lakers, settling on his assistant coaching staff. Current Lakers assistant Kurt Rambis may be retained, while the future of assistants Frank Hamblen and Jim Cleamons is less certain. Assistant coach Tex Winter, one of Jackson's longtime confidants, has already announced his retirement.

Information from ESPN's David Aldridge was used in this report.