Ballmer on Rivers: ‘He won a heck of a lot of games and laid a foundation for this franchise’

In a shocking move, Doc Rivers has stepped down as coach of the Los Angeles Clippers, the team announced on Monday.

According to the team, owner Steve Ballmer and Doc Rivers reached a mutual decision that Rivers will step down as head coach of the L.A. Clippers. 

“Doc has been a terrific coach for the Clippers, an incredible ambassador, and a pillar of strength during tumultuous times,” Ballmer said via a team statement. “He won a heck of a lot of games and laid a foundation for this franchise.” 

The Clippers, who acquired Kawhi Leonard and Paul George last offseason, lost to the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference semifinals after being up 3-1 in that season.

Rivers, 58, was the most successful head coach in Clippers history, compiling a record of 356-208 over seven seasons. Under his direction, the Clippers made the playoffs six times and reached the Western Conference semifinals in 2020, 2015, and 2014. Before arriving in Los Angeles in 2013, Rivers spent nine seasons with the Boston Celtics, winning a championship in 2008. 

According to Ballmer, the Clippers will begin the search to replace Rivers immediately.

“I am also extremely confident in our front office and our players,” Ballmer said. “We will find the right coach to lead us forward and help us reach our ultimate goals. We will begin the search and interview process immediately.” 

If he decides to coach next season, Rivers will be in demand. Currently, there are some excellent jobs that are open right now in the NBA, including Philadelphia, Houston, Indiana, and New Orleans, so Rivers could possibly find a good situation. Regarding the Clippers, you wonder what direction they will go in; Ty Lue, who led the Cavaliers to an NBA title in 2016, was Rivers’ lead assistant and could be one of the favorites for the job. Obviously, the Clippers have an attractive situation, and whoever gets the job will have an opportunity to win right away. 

 

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