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Character Driven: Life, Lessons, and Basketball Hardcover – September 8, 2009

12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"From humble beginnings in Little Rock to multiple NBA championships, Derek Fisher's career has seen highs and lows. Through it all, he's demonstrated strong faith in the face of adversity, commitment to team goals over individual recognition, and above all else, devotion to his family. His story shows that what truly matters aren't the achievements or accolades, but the values that carry you through them. It's a message we can all take to heart." -- President Bill Clinton

"Don't be blinded by the four NBA championship rings. Derek Fisher's thirteen-year journey through professional basketball is as much about what shaped him as a man and the choices he's made in his life as it is about game-winning shots and sharing a backcourt with Kobe Bryant." -- Michael Wilbon

"This is the heart of Derek Fisher. I'm glad that he's decided to share more of his life and the lessons that he's learned along the way. I hope you enjoy getting to know him as much as I have. The league, and the world at large, could use more people like Derek Fisher in it." -- From the Foreword by Earvin "Magic" Johnson

About the Author

Derek Fisher has spent twelve seasons in the NBA playing for the Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors, and Utah Jazz. He is the president of the NBA Players Association. Currently the starting point guard for the Lakers, he lives with his family in Los Angeles.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone; First Edition edition (September 8, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416580530
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416580539
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #851,400 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By H. Bala TOP 500 REVIEWER on September 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
- "Why did he (Kobe Bryant) and Fisher get along so well? It's because Fisher, at a totally different level of talent and skill, competes every bit as hard as Bryant." - Jeff Van Gundy, commentating as the Lakers clinched the 2009 NBA Championship.

Mad respect to DFish. He's one of those blue collar wearing, lunchpail toting, unassuming dudes, and he's real easy to overlook. Except that, once in a while, he'll do something sublime and make you realize, all over again, that flash is no substitute for substance. Kobe and Shaq and, hell, even Robert Horry got the lion's share of accolades (and rightly enough), but Derek Fisher's contributions can't be dismissed. Fisher was the third leading scorer in those back-to-back-to-back NBA championships for the Lakers. I forget which year it was, that he got injured and missed all those games, but I remember his coming back and shooting lights out, a suddenly improved perimeter marksman. And who can forget the 0.4 miracle toss? Certainly not the Spurs. There's a reason Kobe Bryant looks for him during crunch time.

CHARACTER DRIVEN: LIFE, LESSONS, AND BASKETBALL is Derek Fisher's autobiography, written by Derek himself with an assist from some cat named Gary Brozek. Role players usually don't end up writing memoirs; usually, that's reserved for the superstars. But Derek Fisher has things to say beyond the scope of basketball. Or, rather, what he does is tie in all the skill sets and philosophies he's learned in playing basketball and applies them to how he lives life. And, sometimes, it's vice versa. Hard work. Perseverance. Grit. A competitive drive. No fear of failure. Character. And faith. The essence of Derek Fisher.

In the game of hoops, Fish feels no pressure.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Rick Shaq Goldstein on October 2, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Derek Fisher though not always a starter was always an integral part of four World Championships as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers. He won multiple championships with Kobe and "SHAQ"... and he has also won a championship only with Kobe. Fisher has left the Lakers and played with the Golden State Warriors and with the Utah Jazz... and made his way back "home" again to the Lakers. Through the wins and the losses... through the changes in geography... and changes in teammates... one thing never changed... Derek was a class act both on and off the court. While other more famous teammates may have been the marketing face of the teams Derek was on... Derek always remained the voice of sensibility that the public at large glued their dwindling hopes to for a player that was an all around nice guy. I met Derek after a game in Boston when he was with the Lakers. It was my sons twenty-first birthday and through friends we were allowed in a special area for player's friends and family and special guests. Many of the other players ignored my son's request for an autograph... but not Derek (or Robert Horry). He was a gentleman and signed my sons Derek Fisher basketball card.

As the author tells his life story he tries very hard to serve two "masters". One is the game of basketball... and one is a little over-ambitious attempt at prophesizing that everything that is important in basketball correlates directly with everyday life off the court. As an example he goes from detailing all the hard work and concepts of playing defense in the NBA to saying: "Off the court playing defense makes a lot of sense as well. Now that I'm a parent, I'm even more conscious of protecting what's valuable to me and what's in my literal and figurative houses.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Schirripa on October 11, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Character Driven demonstrates how simple people can become important in their field and role models for some. The book reads well. I hope many young men get to read it.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I would give this somewhere between 3 and 4 stars. As a sports biography, it definitely pales against one I just read by Andre Agassi (Open). Fisher does a nice job takling about his values, upbringing, faith, and hard work, but I was a bit perplexed by one matter. He did talk about how it was a bit of a struggle at first to marry someone with a child from a previous relationship, but only in passing did he mention that he also had a child from a former relationship. It would have been nice if he elaborated on the past relationship or at least not made such a major issue of his future wife having a child, as that struck me as a bit hypocrtical. I'm sure he is not a hypocite, but the difference between a great biography and just a so-so one (in my opinion), is the ability to be completely open, as Agassi did, but Fisher did not quite accomplish.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a good book. You learn mutch about how Fisher thinkings and how he came to be the man and player he is today. But there is not mutch about games, series or other players in this book and that is my favroit part so....

p.s i am a Fisher fan and love his game.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful By William H. Hilf on October 3, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I've read a lot of basketball books, from players and coaches, and this is easily one of most motivational, personal and honest books I've read. I also coach youth basketball and I believe every young basketball player should read this book. Wonderful lessons about commitment: the chapter about getting to the NBA draft is inspiring. And the story about Tatum's cancer is a great life lesson in prioritization and faith. I run a non-profit ([...]) that uses basketball to help underpriviliged kids (refugees, street childrent) in developing countries and Derek's book epitomizes so much of our principles that I will make it 'required reading' for our board members and donors. As Magic says in the foreward to 'Character Driven Life', the NBA and the world needs more people like Derek Fisher in it. Well done, Fish, and keep inspiring us on and off the court!
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