When Derek Fisher was traded to Houston on Thursday, it brought a painful end to his illustrious Lakers career. The five championships won in 13 seasons in were all things of the past, and the team's present needs -- as seen by the Buss family ownership group and general manager Mitch Kupchak -- included getting younger and quicker at the point guard position in an attempt to remain relevant at the NBA's highest levels.
So Kupchak landed 25-year-old Ramon Sessions from Cleveland via trade, then sent the 37-year-old Fisher to the Rockets before he reached a buyout agreement on Tuesday. But Fisher clearly had a plan in place when he decided to forgo the $3.4 million option on his contract for next season, one that became clear on Wednesday.
His decision to sign with Oklahoma City means the Thunder will have the sort of point-guard depth and veteran leadership they've been lacking, not to mention the intriguing possibility that he could face his former team when the postseason rolls around.
In a statement issued first to SI.com, Fisher discusses the trade and his new team for the first time: