Derek Fisher confirms buyout deal with Rockets
Derek Fisher (2) was traded to the Houston Rockets on Thursday, March 15, 2012. / Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images
(CBS/AP) LOS ANGELES - Derek Fisher confirmed Sunday night he has reached a buyout agreement with the Houston Rockets.
The 37-year-old point guard gave no indication of his plans for the future in a statement issued by his business manager.
The eighth-place Rockets acquired Fisher from the Los Angeles Lakers on Thursday, and the club was eager to put Fisher into its lineup, even planning to pick up his $3.4 million option for next season.
"Derek's desire to win a sixth championship is what drives him and will continue to drive him as he moves forward," manager Jamie Wior said in the statement.
If Fisher clears waivers in the next few days, he would become a free agent.
CBSSports.com's Matt Moore says there are three teams that may take a look at the veteran.
"Miami wanted Fisher two years ago when he signed his last deal with Los Angeles so that would be an obvious start. The Celtics always look at players like Fisher dspite their need for athleticism being the most glaring issue. San Antonio's another target with the way they like bringing in more quality locker room guys," Moore writes.
The Lakers traded the five-time NBA champion guard to Houston on Thursday for backup big man Jordan Hill. Los Angeles made the move partly to clear playing time for Ramon Sessions, acquired earlier in the day from Cleveland, but also to avoid paying significant salaries to three point guards.
Although Fisher's contributions have declined in recent years, the trade upset the Lakers' veterans including Kobe Bryant, who considered Fisher an invaluable ingredient in the team's chemistry. Bryant and Fisher were teammates for 13 of their 16 NBA seasons, serving as co-captains this season.
Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum all said they spoke to Fisher over the previous three days since the Lakers traded him.
"I know it's hard to go through what he's going through," said Gasol, the subject of innumerable trade rumors himself. "We'll see what ends up happening with him, but I'm not sure what he wants to do."
Bryant said he had discussed the future with Fisher, but declined to share Fisher's plans.
Fisher had played in 537 consecutive NBA games and had made 371 straight starts over the past five seasons for the Lakers, but the NBA players' union leader was averaging just 5.9 points his lowest average in 13 years and 3.3 assists this season.
Sessions has injected quickness and ball-penetration skills into the Lakers in just two games. He had 10 points and six assists off the bench in the Lakers' 103-99 loss to Utah on Sunday night.
Backup Steve Blake took Fisher's starting spot, but the veteran hasn't scored a point in his first two starts.
Popular in Sports
- Golf champion and CBS analyst Ken Venturi dies
- David Beckham's long, multifaceted career 27 Photos
- Sheriff: Ex-NASCAR driver Dick Trickle dead at 71
- Iran and U.S. wrestling teams meet in NYC
- Phil Ivey skips World Series of Poker in protest
- Commentary: 5 myths about Ray Lewis' murder trial
- Warrant issued for former NFL player Chad Johnson
- Ex-NFLer: Nick Saban ignored convulsing player