Derek Fisher is not a starting PG in the NBA anymore, and the masquerading around as such that he did in LA this past season was painful to watch at times. But, he is still an extremely valuable NBA back-up I think, especially for a contending team. The Oklahoma City Thunder appear to agree with that assessment, and reports out of OKC are that they’re close to inking a deal with D-Fish as a result just as soon as he clears waivers.
This according to Marc Stein with ESPN.com last night:
Derek Fisher is in advanced negotiations with the Oklahoma City Thunder to sign with the Western Conference leaders after clearing waivers, according to sources close to the situation. Fisher is scheduled to clear waivers at 6 p.m. ET Wednesday. One source with knowledge of the talks told ESPN.com that Fisher is “very close” to committing to sign with the Thunder once he becomes a free agent.
At the morning shootaround before Tuesday night’s game against the Utah Jazz, Durant strongly endorsed the prospect of signing Fisher to The Oklahoman, telling the newspaper: “Derek is a consummate professional … an unbelievable leader. And he played with arguably one of the greatest players to ever play in Kobe (Bryant), and Kobe really respected him as a player and wanted him on his team, so that speaks volumes.”
“We have a great corps of point guards leading off with Russ (Russell Westbrook) and then Reggie (Jackson) and Royal (Ivey),” Durant continued. “But adding another guy that can come in and give us some good minutes here and there and bring his leadership and winning plays here would be cool. But it’s one of those things that you really don’t know too much about. We got to just see what happens. (Fisher) is a Thunder guy as far as character and off the court is concerned. But we’ll see what happens.”
I’d have to agree with Kevin Durant in saying that I think this is a great move for both sides here. Russell Westbrook is your starter, but having a guy like Fisher simply chirping in his ear down the stretch would have to help I think. Besides that, with Eric Maynor being lost for the season, Fisher also fills a void on that OKC roster too. Reggie Jackson and Royal Ivey have split those back-up duties admirably at times this year, but Derek Fisher’s got rings, and he’s knocked down big shots to get them. The same rings these Thunder are trying to get for the first time. This move makes sense for everybody, do it.