On Saturday, the Dallas Mavericks released Derek Fisher. The release was mutual and was already in the works for several days. Fisher asked to be waived by the team, but agreed to stay with Dallas until they could find a point guard to replace him. According to ESPN’s Mark Stein, the Mavericks have found Fisher’s replacement in Chris Douglass-Roberts.
Fisher asking to be released is interesting considering that he had been playing well in steady minutes. The 38-year-old was averaging 8.6 points and 3.6 assists per game in 25 minutes per game with the Mavericks. Fisher’s request may have something to do with his age and health as he suffered a strained patellar tendon in his right knee early in the Mavs’ home win against Philadelphia on Tuesday — which was after he asked to be released from the team.
Douglas-Roberts has been having a stellar season in the D-League and is widely regarded as the best prospect in the NBA’s farm system. CDR is scheduled to play for the Legends on Saturday night before joining the Mavericks on Sunday in San Antonio.
Fisher was brought into start for the Mavericks after Darren Collison moved out of favor with head coach Rick Carlisle due to poor play. Deeper on the depth chart are Rodrigue Beaubois and Dominique Jones, who aren’t exactly having great season either.
CDR is a nice combo guard who can play both positions on the perimeter. Douglas-Roberts should be able to help the Mavericks with his ability to penetrate into the paint while handling. His keen instincts for slashing when off the ball will also be huge for a Dallas team struggling to find offense along the perimeter.
Until reasons surface, there will be speculation about why Fisher asked to be released. A lot of that speculation will revolve around him potentially rejoining the Lakers, which is highly unlikely due to the fact that the Lakers roster is currently full and have seemed unwilling to take on extra salary cap hits despite their growing need for improved point guard play with both Steve Nash and Steve Blake hurt.
Fisher did, however, state that being away from his family — and most importantly — his daughter were the reason for him wanting to leave Dallas.