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It’s official: Derek Fisher joins Thunder, will play Wednesday

Mar 21, 2012, 6:42 PM EDT

Los Angeles Lakers v New York Knicks Getty Images

This tweet from Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman says all you need to know:

Derek Fisher just walked in the Thunder’s locker room.

It’s what he brings to that locker room — more than on the court — that got the Oklahoma City Thunder to sign the five-time champion Derek Fisher. The team has confirmed the signing, Fisher cleared waivers at 6 p.m. Eastern. and signed minutes later.

Fisher will be in uniform for the Thunder Wednesday night against the Clippers.

Go ahead and circle March 29 on your calendar now — that is when Fisher returns to Staples Center to face the Lakers.

The Lakers traded the veteran to the Rockets at the trade deadline, a move made to clear the way in the locker room politically for the arrival of Ramon Sessions. No doubt Sessions is the better player at this point, but Fisher sitting on the bench could have created problems. The Lakers traded him to the Rockets, and Fisher gave up his entire $3.4 million player option next season to be bought out and be made a free agent.

Because Fisher wanted to win another ring (he has five as a Laker). Something he thinks could happen in Oklahoma City.

He will get minutes as the backup point guard but he’s not going to give them much — Fisher is shooting 38.3 percent this season and has a PER of 8.9. And his offense is better than his defense.

However, in the locker room he brings an unwavering confidence and an understanding of what it takes to win in the playoffs. Fisher is a calm, confident player who does not shrink from the big moments.

The Thunder are a pedestrian 5-5 in their last 10 and have looked vulnerable. This is a team that needs to be reminded of how to win in the playoffs and Fisher’s level-headed demeanor, professionalism and confidence can help. In the playoffs, when things inevitably get tough, he can be the calming, veteran voice.

This is a good pickup by the Thunder. We’ll see how much of a dividend it pays in late May and June.

  1. fnc111 - Mar 21, 2012 at 6:51 PM

    Will love watching him be a part of beating the Fakers.

    • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:11 PM

      Calling the Lakers, “fakers” is just like calling Meryl Streep an actress-wannabe…

      …unless of course you’re being sarcastic. LOL!

  2. fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:02 PM

    Thanks D-Fish for everything. We appreciate what you have contributed to the Lakers. I wish you all the best in your career.

    Funny when LAKER haters use that word “fakers.”

    What’s so fake with 16 NBA championships, 31 Conference Titles (ergo 31 Finals appearances, 22 Division Titles)?

    If Lakers were fake what would you call your team? What has your team got?

    Bottomfeeder?

    Pathetic.

  3. bearsstillsuck - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:09 PM

    Fould: it’s that attitude there that makes everybody hate laker fans. And I’ve never rooted for fisher more than I am now.

    • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:21 PM

      Tell me then, won’t you feel the same pride had your team accomplished the same? Really, HOW WOULD YOU feel if your team got those banners in our rafters. You’d be oozing with pride just the same. To deny it would be hypocritical.

      I never said the other teams suck. My statements are based on facts which even the haters cannot deny. What is pathetic is that haters take it against the Lakers for being consistent contenders compared to ALL the other teams. Can you blame us if we would snort out and cough up the words “envy” and “jealousy”?

      Now, I’ve been a Laker fan since I was a kid during the Magic-Kareem-Worthy Showtime era and still rooted for the Lakers during their dismal showing under Pfund, which means I cannot be accused of being a fair-weather fan.

      • passerby23 - Mar 21, 2012 at 9:01 PM

        I’ll never understand how fans have so much “pride” when “their” team wins. I’m a huge sports fan, but I never lose sight of the fact that that’s all I am. I have nothing invested in the team. I have contributed nothing to their success. It’s a group of players who happen to be employed in or near your geographical location. How is there pride in that? YOU did not sacrifice anything, and the team is comprised of players who are simply there contractually. The team doesn’t represent individual people in a geographical area. It’s all a bit silly. They love Dirk in Dallas. If he spurned them for another team, he would be hated in Dallas. The sports fan calls himself “proud” and “loyal”, but would turn on them in an instant and throw anyone on the team under the bus at a moment’s notice if you just give them a reason. The sports fan who calls a team “theirs” is actually insanely fickle, anxious, and insecure, which is the exact opposite of pride and loyalty.

        Enjoy the game and players, but all this talk about “our” team pride is ridiculous. Because someone invests emotionally in a game doesn’t make them YOUR team.

      • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 22, 2012 at 5:43 AM

        @passerby23: I hear you. But lest you forget, fans spend on tickets (season or otherwise), team paraphernalia (jerseys, caps, etc) and significantly contribute on how “marketable” a franchise is (why are there big market and small market teams?). The size of the fanbase of a team is very important. Consistent sold-out games and high ratings on tv and the internet would mean more sponsors and higher rates of income. These translates to increase in revenue for the team which allows advantages in getting better players and providing better stadiums and facilities, etc.

        So, it’s unfair to say that a fan has no contribution whatsoever. Small it may seem if you see each individual in isolation. However, with sheer numbers and clumped together, the effect is definitely felt.

        You said: “The sports fan calls himself “proud” and “loyal”, but would turn on them in an instant and throw anyone on the team under the bus at a moment’s notice if you just give them a reason. The sports fan who calls a team “theirs” is actually insanely fickle, anxious, and insecure, which is the exact opposite of pride and loyalty.”

        Now, that’s unfair cause you are making a sweeping statement. Not all fans behave as you would mention.

      • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 22, 2012 at 5:54 AM

        Essentially, my investment isn’t “just” emotional as you might put it.

        There is also monetary as mentioned earlier.

        There’s Time too. I could have done other things instead whenever my team plays.

        Sacrifice? Well we do give up some stuff just to be able to show our support for our team.

  4. losangelasbasketball - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:41 PM

    Fisher is a traitor… get ready for the boos….

    • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:44 PM

      A traitor? Why so? Enlighten me.

      It wasn’t his decision to leave the Lakers. The man needs to take care of his family. What was he supposed to do then?

      • losangelasbasketball - Mar 21, 2012 at 8:01 PM

        What’s he supposed to do?
        I dunno, not go to the one team the Lakers will have trouble beating in the playoffs…

      • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 8:32 PM

        @losangelesbasketball: Fish is a competitor. He’d rather play for a contender. I would too if I were in his shoes.

        That being said, one has to understand that this is a business. As Kobe would oft say, “It’s the nature of the beast,” referring to the NBA.

        In as much as we shouldn’t blame the Lakers for trading away Fish to get better players, we shouldn’t put it against him for choosing to play for the Thunder.

        Besides, as a real Laker fan and a fan of professional basketball, I look forward to the challenges that get in the way to the Promised Land (which we reached 16 times).

        Afterall, if we would claim that we are the best team, then we must beat the best the opposition has to offer. That Laker Pride is latched on the idea that only by beating the best teams can one really brag they are truly the best.

        Where’s the pride in beating pick-up teams comprised of clearasil kids?

  5. mrlitl - Mar 21, 2012 at 7:51 PM

    I agree. Fisher didn’t demand a trade like some other jerks(looking at you Dwight and Melo). He was traded BY the Lakers.

    • rodgersmvp - Mar 21, 2012 at 8:11 PM

      If anything the Lakers betrayed him, thought it did make good business sense.

      • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 21, 2012 at 8:36 PM

        I would tend to agree (I rather have Fish finish his playing career as a Laker) but I can’t really blame the Lakers either.

      • rodgersmvp - Mar 21, 2012 at 9:02 PM

        It’s unfortunate, but it makes sense for both sides. I would still like to see Fisher ride off into the sunset with another ring.

  6. jimeejohnson - Mar 21, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    Culture shock: you betcha! Love to see OKC play the Lakers for all the beans out west.

  7. storebrandcookies - Mar 21, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    Derek Fisher has a chance to have more rings than Kobe?

  8. savvybynature - Mar 21, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    Any chance you could tell us what he signed for?

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