Coaching in the NBA is a cutthroat affair. It’s both rewarding and deeply frustrating. For the triumvirate of Doc Rivers, Mike Budenholzer, and Monty Williams, it’s more of the latter following their respective teams’ handing them their walking papers. Their dismissals have also sent shockwaves across the league in large part because not many saw those moves coming, especially since they had all been winning a lot with their now former teams.

Via ESPN Stats & Info:

“The best 3 records over the last 3 seasons belong to the Suns, Bucks and 76ers. Monty Williams, Mike Budenholzer and Doc Rivers are no longer the head coaches for each team.”

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Doc Rivers was fired by the Philadelphia 76ers following a second-round loss in the 2023 NBA Playoffs at the hands of the Boston Celtics. The Sixers had Joel Embiid and James Harden, who were also surrounded by a stable of quality supporting players, but failed to get over the second-round hump. Monty Williams was also dismissed after a second-round exit when the Phoenix Suns were shown the door by the Denver Nuggets. As for Budenholzer, he had perhaps the most embarrassing fate in the playoffs, as the Milwaukee Bucks parted ways with them after getting shocked in the first round by the banged-up Miami Heat.

Doc Rivers have a lengthy history of failures in the playoffs, but he should still be able to find himself on the radars of teams looking for a new head coach in the future. The same can be said about Williams and Budenholzer.