Thunder reserve point guard Derek Fisher on Monday night for the first time played a playoff game against the Los Angeles Lakers, the team for which he played 13½ seasons and won five world championships.
With 19.3 seconds left in Game 1 at Chesapeake Energy Arena, Fisher drilled a 3-pointer from the right wing in front of the Lakers' bench, then gave a quick stare in the direction of his former team.
When you hit the shot, were you sending a message with that glance?
Fisher: "One of those in-the-moment type of things. Putting a period to the ending of last night's game and feeling good about the way we played and some of the things I was able to do. No deeper meaning beyond that. I don't even recall smiling as much. I do remember looking over to the guys at TNT and kind of into the crowd, but I definitely wasn't trying to send a message or show them up. That's not my style."
Do you still keep in touch with Kobe Bryant?
Fisher: "Up until about three days ago. He was wishing me well in the first round. I was wishing him well in the first round. My last message to him was to have a great Game 7 before they played the (Denver) Nuggets. Since then, we've kind of gone to our respective corners. I think it's necessary because of our personal history and what we've accomplished together. In order for us to do what we need to do for our teams, we need to go into our space. But at some point, we'll reconnect and be what we always will be, and that's brothers."
Do you meet when you came onto the court?
Fisher: "That was the extent, just checking in. He asked me if I was good. I asked him if he was good. As much history as we've had, there's no holding back in terms of trying to advance and win a championship. Personal friends or brothers or however close you are to somebody, it's about winning. He knows that better than anybody. I learned that and accomplished that right along side with him, so I feel the same way. That's the way we'll be as long as this series goes on."