The Thunder signed Derek Fisher as a free agent on March 21. Doing so gave Fisher roughly five weeks to get to know his new teammates before the playoffs began, which is when the 37-year-old's insight would become invaluable.
That time is now, and Fisher certainly has been an asset, particularly in Game 2 with 11 points, 5-for-6 shooting and some aggressive perimeter defense.
A quick Q&A with the five-time world champion, who on Thursday night against Dallas will play in his 212th postseason game:
What's the key to winning on the road in the playoffs?
Fisher: "There's a resolve in the pit of your stomach that you just have to have to win playoff games on the road. You're going to face everything there is to face in this game. You're going to get what you feel to be bad calls, especially no calls. The home team is going to go on a run. They're going to make shots. You may not play as well as you'd like to play, but there just has to be a belief deep within that no matter what, you're going to figure out a way. And we have an opportunity tomorrow night to take a crack at it."
The Thunder and Mavericks have gotten to know each other well. Too well, it seems.
"It's almost like practice. You know how you get mad at each other and beat up on each other more than you do the opponent you get tired of seeing? I don't see anything or feel anything more than what's in the playoffs (in terms of physical play). It's supposed to be physical, it's even supposed to be chippy at times. That's how you know everybody cares about what we're trying to do."
You learn a little bit more about your new teammates each day. What did you learn about them in Game 2?
"I've continued to learn this team is mentally tough and enjoys playing together and as a group. You can't practice guys wanting the other guy to be successful. This really is a team. Each opportunity we've had to maybe hang our heads down or get frustrated with each other these first two games (winning 99-98 and 102-99), this team has hung together. Everybody's made contributions and that's what it's going to continue to take in order for us to be successful going forward."