76ers fire head coach Doc Rivers

After three straight seasons of losing in the second round of the playoffs, the Philadelphia 76ers fired head coach Doc Rivers, the team announced Tuesday.

The 76ers had a 3-2 series lead against Boston and had an opportunity to put the Celtics away in Game 6 in Philadelphia, but they fell short, and ultimately were routed by the Celtics 112-88 in Game 7 on Sunday.

Rivers, 61, was named the 25th head coach in franchise history on October 2, 2020. He coached three seasons for Philadelphia, compiling a 154-82 (.653) regular-season record. 

Rivers led the 76ers to a 54-28 regular season record this season, the team’s best since 2000-01.

“Doc is one of the most successful coaches in NBA history, a future Hall of Famer, and someone I respect immensely,” 76ers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey said via press release. “We’re grateful for all he did in his three seasons here and thank him for the important impact he made on our franchise. After having the chance to reflect upon our season, we decided that certain changes are necessary to further our goals of competing for a championship.”

While he had some success, Rivers could not get past the second round, which caused his predecessor Brett Brown to lose his job. 

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, the team’s search for a new coach is expected to include Mike Budenholzer, Sam Cassell, Mike D’Antoni, Nick Nurse, Frank Vogel, and Monty Williams.

Philly has an MVP in Joel Embiid, but James Harden, who can opt out of his contract, could be on the move, so there is some uncertainty with the 76ers, but you knew things would change in Philly, and it should be interesting to see how much more change will happen in the offseason.

76ers’ Rivers named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month

As the Philadelphia 76ers prepare for the upcoming playoffs, their head coach got some good news on Tuesday.

The NBA announced today that Doc Rivers has been named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for games played in March and April. This is the second time Rivers claimed the monthly coaching award in 2022-23, making him the first head coach in 76ers franchise history to receive multiple monthly honors in a single season. 

This award represents the 14th monthly honor of Rivers’ coaching career and his third as the lead man of the 76ers. Only San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich (17) has more such awards in NBA history.  

Rivers, 61, led the 76ers to an Eastern Conference-best 15-7 (.682) mark across the final two months, good for the most wins in the NBA. Philadelphia won 10 of its 15 road contests to close the season. 

Dating back to December 1, Philadelphia boasted an NBA-best 42-18 record and an Eastern Conference-leading 119.1 offensive rating throughout the team’s final 60 games of the regular season.  

Under Rivers’ guidance, the 76ers finished the 2022-23 campaign with a 54-28 record, marking the franchise’s most wins in a single season since 2000-01. 

On Saturday, the 76ers begin their best-of-seven first-round series at home against the Brooklyn Nets.

76ers’ Rivers: ‘I’m biased, but the MVP race is over’

If you had any doubts about who would be the MVP of the 2022-23 NBA season, those doubts might have been put to rest after what we saw on Tuesday night.

Against the Boston Celtics, Philadelphia 76ers All-Star center Joel Embiid was special! He finished with 52 points on 20-of-25 shooting, 13 rebounds, and six assists as the Philly defeated the Celtics for the first time in four games this season, 103-101 at Wells Fargo Center.

According to StatHead, Embiid joins Wilt Chamberlain (twice) as the only players in the history of the NBA with 50-10-5 on 80-percent-or-better shooting. In addition, Embiid has three 50-point double-doubles this season, tied for the most such games in the NBA this season.

76ers head coach Doc Rivers has seen enough; Embiid, not two-time reigning MVP Nikola Jokic is the league MVP.

“We couldn’t make shots,” Rivers said. “We had guys making shots with open shots. The man scored half our points in an NBA game. And I’m biased, but the MVP race is over.”

Embiid agrees with Rivers but is also disappointed with how Philly, who was sloppy down the stretch, closed the game against the Celtics.

“They’re probably right, but we got bigger goals,” Embiid said. “Like I said, they’re probably right, but we got bigger goals in mind. You know, we understand we got a chance, but it’s not gonna be easy. Tonight, for me, was kind of disappointing because we found so many ways to lose the game, and that’s on all of us.”

At this point, Embiid, who is averaging a league-best 33.2 points, 10.2 rebounds, 4.2 assists, and 1.7 blocks per contest, has made an excellent case for MVP, but so has Jokic. However, Embiid has the momentum and elevated his game to the next level, so to Rivers’ point, the race for MVP is over.

Embiid named Eastern Conference Player of the Month; Rivers named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month

The Philadelphia 76ers had a lot of success in January. They went 11-3, including a perfect 6-0 on the road, and because of that, Doc Rivers was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month for January, and for the second consecutive month, Joel Embiid was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month, the league announced Thursday.

In 10 games played throughout the month, Embiid produced a league-best 34.9 points on 54.9% shooting, 10.7 rebounds, 3.2 assists, 1.0 steals, and 1.6 blocked shots. He is the first 76ers player to produce such numbers in a calendar month since Hall of Famer Moses Malone did so in Feb. 1982.  

The five-time All-star reached the 30-point mark in nine of his 10 games played throughout the month, including a streak of seven consecutive from Jan. 2-19. He scored 40-plus points three times in January, including a 47-point (18-31 FG), season-high 18-rebound game in a win over Denver on January 28. 

Rivers run deep!

This marks the first time this season and the second time as the leader of the 76ers that Rivers has captured the monthly coaching honor. He joins Larry Brown as the only two coaches to earn the award multiple times with the franchise. With 13 monthly honors throughout his coaching career, Rivers stands alone in second place on the all-time ledger behind only San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich (17). 

Philadelphia finished the month with a perfect 7-0 mark in games decided by less than 10 points.

For the season, Rivers has led the 76ers to a 33-17 (.667) record, good for third in the Eastern Conference and fourth in the NBA. Going back to December 9, Philadelphia is a league-best 21-5.

76ers’ Rivers on team: ‘They’re starting to visualize what we are, and that’s a good thing’

Before the start of their seven-game homestand, many said this was the point where the Philadelphia 76ers needed to take advantage of these games and make their move in the standings.

After four games, they have just done that, including Friday night’s 118-106 victory over the Golden State Warriors. The 76ers(16-12) have won four straight at Wells Fargo Center and are 10-1 in their last 11 home games.

Joel Embiid led the way with 34 points and 13 rebounds, and James Harden added 27 points, five rebounds, and nine assists.

Philly is getting it done without Tyrese Maxey(foot), and on Friday night, they were without Tobias Harris(back), but despite that, they keep on winning.

“It’s next man up mentality,” Embiid said. “We are missing our best player in Tyrese [Maxey]. Tobias has been great this year. He’s doing his thing, been efficient defensively; he’s been great. When you are missing these types of guys, it’s hard, but I think we have enough talent. Guys like Shake(Milton), Matisse(Thybulle), they’ve been playing really well. Can’t talk enough about De’Anthony [Melton]; he’s been amazing. All of them; D-House, George, Furk, all of those guys are definitely doing their job. I think the main thing is that everyone has bought in

76ers head coach Doc Rivers likes the direction the team is going in right now. 

“We’re healthier; we’re getting there–slowly,” Rivers said. “We’re playing better basketball. We’ve kind of found, and we’re still not there because we need everyone back, but we’re finding who we are. I think our guys are finally seeing like this is who we are; this is how we have to play. They know it. They’re starting to visualize what we are, and that’s a good thing.”

P.J. Tucker, who had seven points and six rebounds, added: “I say the biggest thing is just our energy and effort towards each other, helping each other be successful. I always like saying, like Coach [Erik Spoelstra]’s favorite sayings, “enjoy somebody else’s success,” and I feel like that’s like huge when it comes to the bench, and everybody’s just having that good energy and that good comment towards everybody. I feel like that’s picked up a lot, and everybody’s spirit has gotten better as a team.”

Philadelphia is getting healthier and is starting to look like the team many thought they would be when the season started. They hope to keep the good vibes going on Monday night when they battle the Raptors.

Embiid: ‘It’s all about doing whatever it takes to win a championship’

Joel Embiid had a monster game on Sunday night against the Jazz, and the 76ers needed all of it. Embiid scored a career-high 59 points (19-28 FG, 20-24 FT) to go with 11 rebounds, eight assists, and seven blocks as the 76ers defeated the Jazz 105-98 at Wells Fargo Center. 

According to Stathead, Embiid’s 59-point outing is the fifth-highest-scoring game in team history. In addition, he became the first player to reach such totals in the same game since blocked shots became a statistic in 1973-74. 

Embiid scored 26 of the team’s 27 fourth-quarter points and blocked five shots in the quarter. He did it all for Philadelphia.

The points were great, but the blocks and rebounds impressed 76ers head coach Doc Rivers.

I’ve seen guys score a lot of points. I haven’t seen guys score a lot of points, rebound, and then the block shots,” Rivers said after the in. “That was impressive. He was getting everything. I’ve never seen a more dominating performance when you look at both offense and defense.”

Embiid, who had 42 points against the Hawks on Saturday night, has scored 101 points in the last two games. According to the five-time All-Star, it’s all about winning.

“We still have a lot more to accomplish,” he said. “We can talk about whatever tonight, stats and all of that tonight, but that’s not what matters. It’s all about doing whatever it takes to win a championship. That would be the best thing ever. It doesn’t matter if I’m averaging 10 points, 30, or whatever; if we win a championship, that’s all that matters.”

Tyrese Maxey scored 18 points for the 76ers on Sunday night, and what impressed him was seeing Embiid score 59 points on the second half of a back-to-back.

“He’s [Joel Embiid] a soldier,” Maxey said. “He was coming in saying his shoulder was hurting and stuff like that. For him to go out there and play and give it his all is huge. It’s huge for this team and huge for this organization. Your best player, after a 42-point performance last night on a back-to-back, he comes out here and dominates again. Has 59-points and seven blocks and ten boards, and eight assists. Just his presence was really good tonight. He made shots. He made free throws. He’s just good at basketball. It’s that simple.”

This was an exceptional performance by Embiid, but again, most importantly, the 76ers got two big wins over the weekend to even their record at 7-7. It’s still early, but this would be a good time for Philly to start stringing together some wins.

Report: Montrezl Harrell signs with 76ers

All-Star center Joel Embiid wanted toughness in Philadelphia, and Daryl Morey has done just that. He added P.J. Tucker in free agency, traded for De’Anthony Melton, and according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, they grabbed more toughness as they signed free agent center Montrezl Harrell to a two-year deal worth $5.2 million, including a player option.

Harrell, 28, spent last season with the Wizards and Hornets, where he averaged 13.1 points and 6.2 rebounds per contest off the bench. Harrell will be reunited with Doc Rivers; the two were together with the Clippers, and Harrell had a lot of success, including winning the 2019-20 Sixth Man of the Year award.

According to Wojnarowski, 76ers star James Harden, who signed a team-friendly team, recruited Harrell to Philly, and fortunately for Harden, he got his man.

Harrell got into legal trouble in the offseason as he was charged with marijuana trafficking in May after a traffic stop in Kentucky; the charges were later reduced to misdemeanor possession, and he avoided jail time.

The 76ers needed a reliable backup for Embiid, and the seven-year veteran fits the bill. Philadelphia is looking to win now, and they are clearly all in on trying to do it in the 2022-23 NBA season. 

76ers’ Harden: ‘This is where I want to win, and I think we have the pieces to accomplish that goal’

On Wednesday, the Philadelphia 76ers made it official as they announced the re-signing of James Harden.

According to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, it’s a two-year deal worth $68.6 million with a player option in Year 2. Harden took a pay cut after opting out of his contract, which would have paid him $47 million next season. With the pay cut, Philadelphia was able to add P.J. Tucker and Danuel House in free agency. In addition, they acquired De’Anthony Melton in a draft-day trade with the Grizzlies.

Harden, who was acquired by the 76ers as part of a five-player trade with the Nets in February, averaged 22.0 points (.410 FG, .330 3FG, .877 FT), 7.7 rebounds, 10.3 assists, 1.3 steals, and 37.2 minutes in 65 games played (all starts) between Brooklyn and Philadelphia.

In 21 games with the 76ers, he averaged 21.0 points, 7.7 rebounds, and 10.3 assists per contest in 21 games. Also, last season, the 13-year veteran was named to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team.

“This is where I want to be. This is where I want to win, and I think we have the pieces to accomplish that goal,” Harden said via a press release announcing the move. “From my first day with the 76ers organization, the team and the fans have helped me feel at home here in Philadelphia. I’m excited to build off of last season, and I can’t wait to get out on the court with the guys and start this journey.”   

76ers head coach Doc Rivers added: “I couldn’t be happier with James’ decision to commit to our organization. Over the last two years, we have taken major steps toward our ultimate goal of becoming champions,” said 76ers Head Coach Doc Rivers. “James shares our drive to win a title, and he believes being a 76er gives him the best opportunity to do that. Together, we will work tirelessly to achieve our goal.”  

Before last season with the Nets and 76ers, Harden spent parts of nine seasons (2012-21) with the Rockets. During that time, Harden was named the 2017-18 NBA MVP after leading the NBA in points per game (30.4) and finishing third in assists (8.8). The 10-time All-Star was also among the top-three vote-getters for the award each season from 2016-20. 

“James Harden is one of the greatest players in NBA history and a future Hall of Famer,” said 76ers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey. “His mission is to win an NBA title, and we’re thrilled that he will continue that journey here in Philadelphia… I believe we’ve only scratched the surface of what’s possible in his partnership with Joel and this talented roster.”  

Rivers on Embiid: ‘I don’t think he gets enough credit how good of a defensive player he is’

The Philadelphia 76ers got a big boost Friday night when their All-Star and probably soon-to-be league MVP Joel Embiid returned after missing the for two games of their second round series against the Miami Heat with a broken orbital bone and concussion. 

Embiid did his job on the offensive end as he had 18 points and 11 rebounds, and he also anchored a defense that held Miami to 79 points as Philly defeated the Heat 99-79 at Wells Fargo Center. 

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Miami still leads the series 2-1. Game 4 is Sunday night in Philly.

According to StatHead, this marked the first time since the 2012 postseason where Philly has held an opponent to fewer than 80 points.

After the win, head coach Doc Rivers discussed the presence of Embiid.

I mean, just his presence, obviously, to start the game,” Rivers said. “His energy, his rebounding. His ability at the basket. I’ve said it all year; you could see his timing was off a little bit. But his presence defensively, I really don’t – I don’t think he gets enough credit how good of a defensive player he is and how much he helps us. And I thought tonight; it was a lot of that.”

According to Embiid, he did not have a lot of energy, but he was pleased with what he did defensively.

 “I didn’t think I had a lot of energy, honestly,” Embiid said. “I was really trying to really get through it. Kind of, you just use my presence out there as a decoy. I feel like I pride myself really defensively. And I feel like that’s where my presence is really felt. On the defensive end. So that’s one of the main reasons why playing I thought I could have a huge impact.”

Embiid, who stayed back in Philly for Games 1 & 2, had a hard time watching his team struggle in Miami. 

“It was very annoying just watching,” he said. “Obviously, we didn’t make shots, but we also made a lot of mistakes. Whether it was offensive rebounding or turnovers. Their big fella, Bam [Adebayo], was dominating. And I was really pissed off watching another big man play well against my team. It’s unfortunate. Can’t take it back. Now we’ve just got to focus on the next game.”

Role players play better at home, and Danny Green played his role and then some as he had a team-high tying 21 points, including a playoff career-high seven threes. 

In the first two games of this series, Green was 2-14 from deep, but that all changed Friday night. However, he’s not satisfied.

“It felt good to be able to help my team and do my job, that’s it,” Green said. “I’m not in any way, shape, or form satisfied; we are not taking any deep breaths or exhaling; we know we have to win another game, so we have to stay locked in and focused, taking it one game at a time, hopefully, we can keep that momentum and have another decent shooting night on Sunday.”

After going scoreless in the first half, Maxey went off in the second half as he had 21 points, including 14 points in the fourth.

“I just started being aggressive,’ Maxey said. “I kind of was, you know, let the game come to me a little bit. Got the Big Fella [Joel Embiid] back. James [Harden] was attacking and doing a really good job of that. And, I don’t really have to force anything. It’s kind of get it where I can fit in at, and when it’s time to make some big shots, I’m gonna try to make some big shots.”

The 76ers have a chance in this series as long as Embiid is on the court, and while he was not at his best, he was good enough. Can we expect Miami to shoot 35% from the floor and go 7/30 downtown in Game 4? Probably not. However, in his second game back, Embiid might be better, and the 76ers, who had 19 turnovers in Game 3, could be better on offense as well.

If Philly wants to make it a series, they have to win Game 4, and we’ll see if they can make that happen on Sunday.


For the Heat, Jimmy Butler scored a game-best 33 points to go along with nine rebounds and two steals.

Back to Danny Green. he joins former 76er Seth Curry(who was in attendance Friday night) and Hall of Famer Allen Iverson as the only players in team history with at least seven made three-pointers in a playoff game (Stathead).

James Harden had 17 points, eight rebounds, and six assists. He also had seven turnovers. 

As a team, Philadelphia shot well from beyond the arc(16-33 (.485).

76ers assistant Joerger stepping away from team for cancer treatments

Philadelphia 76ers assistant coach Dave Joerger is stepping from the team to continue cancer treatments. According to ESPN, Joerger has a form of “head and neck” cancer.

The 47-year-old Joerger reportedly told the team after their loss to the Pacers on Saturday night about his diagnosis.

Joerger released the following statement through the team:

“I will be stepping away from the bench, effective immediately, as I was recently diagnosed with a treatable form of cancer. I will take this time to focus on my health and I look forward to rejoining the team once I’ve completed the treatment process. 

“Over the last few months, I learned the importance of self-evaluation and care, early detection and annual medical exams. I know I will beat this diagnosis with the help of my world-class medical team at the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center – Jefferson Health, under the direction of Dr. David M. Cognetti, Dr. Voichita Bar Ad and Dr. Jennifer Johnson. I would like to thank the entire medical team and support staff at Jefferson Health for their extraordinary care. I would also like to acknowledge Josh Harris, David Blitzer, Doc Rivers, Daryl Morey, Elton Brand and the entire 76ers organization. Their unwavering support has allowed me to concentrate all of my efforts towards beating cancer. Most importantly, thank you to my wife Kimberly and my loving family who continue to provide me with strength.  

“The game of basketball has given me so much, highlighted by the extended support system and lifelong friendships I have been able to form. I look forward to using my platform to continue to raise awareness and help support the fight against cancer.”

 76ers head coach Doc Rivers said the following about Joerger:

“Dave is not only one of the most talented and respected coaches in the NBA, but he’s a great friend, colleague, husband and father. The same positivity, enthusiasm and grit that have made him a successful coach will also carry him through his fight against cancer. I know I speak for everyone at the 76ers when I say, “Get well soon, we love you and we’ll be with you throughout this entire process. Your battle is our battle.” 

Joerger joined the 76ers last season as assistant after being a head coach in Memphis and Sacramento.