Some five months after Matt Barnes allegedly two-pieced him for dating Gloria Govan, Derek Fisher is finally speaking out. The former New York Knicks coach gave his side of the story in a long-winded essay for The Cauldron, where he also addressed getting fired from the team.
In the post titled “Truth” Fisher starts by making it clear that losing his job had nothing to do with his personal life:
First, let’s address this idea that I lost my job because of certain “character” or “integrity” issues. Not only is any such insinuation untrue, it’s downright offensive.
The reality is that NBA coaches get fired for all sorts of different reasons. Coaches that have been at it much longer than I have — and have been far more successful than I was — have been fired.
When the organization informed me of its decision, the conversation was short. The underlying message was that things weren’t working out the way they had hoped. I thanked management for the opportunity, and that was it.
Further in his explanation, Fisher tries to take a feministic viewpoint on the Govan relationship. He theorizes that Govan was wrongfully depicted as a piece of property in the press, rather than a human being who can make “her own decisions.”
As for being friends with Barnes, Fisher says they were nothing more than teammates:
To say that we had history before the incident would be an exaggeration. We played together for the Los Angeles Lakers during the 2010–11 season, and a couple months in the lockout-shortened 2011–12 season. That’s it. That’s the history.
During that time, we were teammates, and never had any issues. We never had any real relationship off the court, either. Our kids didn’t hang out, our families didn’t interact. There were no birthday parties. There were no post-game dinners. We weren’t friends and we had no mutual friends.
When Gloria and I started dating, she and Matt had already been separated and living apart for more than a year. Same thing for me. My wife and I were long separated; she was in L.A., I was in New York. Matt and Gloria were not trying to work things out, and I certainly wasn’t seeing her behind Matt’s back or in secret. The relationship wasn’t something I was trying to publicize, but it also wasn’t something I was trying to hide, either. There was no reason to.
Fisher adds that he doesn’t know “what was going through Matt’s mind,” when he showed up at Govan’s house last October. He’s adamant that there wasn’t a physical altercation, as has been reported.
There are three sides to every story, but click here to read Fisher’s full post.