Yesterday we heard that the Celtics/Clippers deal involving Doc Rivers was dead, only to later come across reports that such trade talks would continue. More continues to come in about the on-again, off-again saga, much of it courtesy Mark Murphy of the Boston Herald and Baxter Holmes of the Boston Globe. Here’s what we know:
- A source tells Murphy that the deal is dead, despite insistence from the Clippers camp that it will be revived. Discussion about a Kevin Garnett-for-DeAndre Jordan trade is probably dead as well, Murphy writes.
- Rivers is still in contact with Danny Ainge and deliberating over whether he’ll return to Boston for next season, and the decision is not necessarily tied to whether the Celtics will rebuild, Murphy says.
- The Celtics postponed Friday’s press conference with Rivers and Ainge until Monday because the Clippers wanted to discuss a deal again, according to Holmes.
- Holmes hears that Rivers wants to continue coaching in the NBA, despite his well-documented misgivings about doing so with a rebuilding team. Yet sources tell Holmes that Rivers could wind up returning to broadcasting, where his salary would not match what he could get as a coach, because it might be too awkward to go back to the Boston bench at this point. Even so, Celtics management maintains that they would welcome him back.
- As Holmes points out, the Clippers were prepared to give up a first-round pick for Rivers earlier this week when it appeared there was a second, separate deal involving Garnett. Now that the two sides have pushed the Garnett talk to the backburner under pressure from the league, the Clippers only seem willing to relinquish a second-rounder for Rivers.
- Holmes hears from sources who believe the Clippers never intended to pull of a deal with the C’s, and were merely trying to make it seem as though they were to appease Chris Paul.
- A source tells Chris Sheridan of SheridanHoops.com that Rivers and Rajon Rondo had a locker-room altercation that nearly turned into a physical confrontation. “An intense dislike” for Rondo is part of Rivers’ motivation for leaving the Celtics, Sheridan writes. Rich Levine of CSNNE.com tweets his doubts that such an incident took place, and believes that if it did, it may have happened as far back as 2010.
- In a separate piece, Holmes notes that Celtics assistant coach Mike Longabardi has accepted a position on Jeff Hornacek‘s coaching staff with the Suns. He’s the only Celtics assistant to have depared the team this offseason.