Doc Rivers agrees to deal to become Philadelphia head coach
After being on the free agent coaching market for exactly three days, Doc Rivers has agreed to become the next head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers. ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarwoski reported the news on Thursday afternoon, just about 72 hours removed from losing his gig as head coach of the LA Clippers.
After a rapid courtship and negotiation, Doc Rivers has reached agreement on a deal to become the next coach of the Philadelphia 76ers, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 1, 2020
The LA Clippers and Rivers agreed to mutually part ways on Monday afternoon following multiple meetings and conversations between the head coach, owner Steve Ballmer, and members of the front office including Lawrence Frank and Jerry West.
Rivers will now take over a team spearheaded by stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons while also getting to coach Tobias Harris, a guy he helped blossom in Los Angeles.
Rivers still had two years left on his deal and a significant amount of money owed, but, as Wojarnowski notes, ‘typically there are offset agreements on the payout put into place should a coach be hired in a new job.’
Rivers has compiled a 943-681 (.581) record throughout his 21 seasons as an NBA head coach, including a 564-356 (.631) record as the head coach of the LA Clippers. He led the Clippers to the playoffs in six of his seven years, with the 2017-18 season being a re-tooling year in which the team traded Chris Paul in the prior offseason and Blake Griffin at the trade deadline.
Rivers also played a significant part in the Clippers landing Kawhi Leonard and Paul George last summer. There was some internal discussion as to whether or not the Clippers were giving up too much to the Oklahoma City Thunder for Paul George, but Rivers helped fuel the trade talks that landed George via trade and Leonard via free agency.