Doc Rivers Considered Taking Break, “Couldn’t Turn Down” Sixers Opportunity

Since beginning his NBA head coaching career in 1999 with the Magic, Doc Rivers has changed teams three times, but he has yet to take a year off, having coached for a total of 21 consecutive seasons in Orlando, Boston, and Los Angeles. Speaking to reporters today after being introduced as the Sixers‘ new head coach, Rivers admitted that he entertained the idea of a vacation after parting ways with the Clippers last week.

I was not just going to coach anybody. I was ready to take a break,” Rivers said, per Andrew Greif of The Los Angeles Times (Twitter link). “It depended on the team that was available.”

Rivers was intrigued by the opportunity in Philadelphia, and decided to meet with the team after being contacted by general manager Elton Brand. Despite having two years left on his contract with the Clippers, Rivers ultimately wanted to take on the challenge of leading the Sixers rather than taking any time away from the game.

“For me (it) was a job that you just couldn’t turn down,” he said today, according to Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN (Twitter link).

Here’s more from Rivers’ introductory presser:

  • Asked today about what role he’ll play in personnel decisions, Rivers said that he and Brand will “work together,” per Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer. “That was one of the things that was so exciting about this job, to have this opportunity to work with Elton,” Rivers said. “… I think Elton and I will have a chance to form an amazing partnership together, and we’ll grow from there.”
  • Rivers said he loves the pieces on the Sixers’ roster, referring to as “loaded” and downplaying concerns about positional overlap (Twitter links via Youngmisuk and Derek Bodner of The Athletic). I don’t get lost in what position guys play,” Rivers said. “I look at how many points we score as a team. I don’t care how you score.”
  • Rivers added that the duo of Ben Simmons and Joel Embiidclearly works when they play together,” observing that the club wins 65% of its games when those two stars are active (Twitter links via Youngmisuk and Bodner).
  • According to Rivers, three teams called his agent within five hours of him leaving the Clippers (Twitter link via Tim Bontemps of ESPN). Although he didn’t name the other two teams, the belief is that they were the Pelicans and Rockets.
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21 thoughts on “Doc Rivers Considered Taking Break, “Couldn’t Turn Down” Sixers Opportunity

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      Of course he couldn’t. How many years is he going to last there since The Process has shown that it’s not really working. They’ll give him at least two years to try and make things work, but after that it’s just a matter of time before he “parts ways” with the Sixers.

  1. Sillivan

    If I take 76ers head coach job I’d ask one year deal at 1 million
    If win champ I’ll demand 10 million next year

  2. Curtisrowe

    And I thought to myself, This could be my last chance to fail with a talented roster and mocked viciously…I’ve got to do it!”

  3. washington_bonercats

    Doesn’t care how they score? Looks like yet another coach that will be satisfied if Simmons remains stagnate. If you’re gonna play the 1 in todays league you’re gonna need to shoot.

  4. phillyballers

    Rivers is taking the Rondo approach, if he creates points hell be on the court. They just need those shooters now that arent 34 yrs old like JJ.

  5. bumpy93

    I’m actually surprised that the Philadelphia 76ers ownership and front office actually got something right this is actually a really good hire for them I was truly expecting Tyrone Lou or Dan towing but I’m kind of excited for this one

      • Tyrone Lue would have been a notch below that. I think his brother Tyronn is a little more seasoned NBA basketball coach.

  6. x%sure

    I’m not sure who the right coach for Simmons would be, but I doubt it’s Rivers. He should be good for Tobias though, better than Brown. Frankly Tobias needs to be pushed or even just dared or compared! He reminds me of a football d-lineman who gets a lot of sacks but is best off rotating.

    • phillyballers

      No it’s just what usually happens when Philly gets a player. Was shooting 41-43% from 3 before the trade, and 32-36% after. Tobias improved drastically at 3’s and then reverted back to masonry work.

      Like when the Eagles got Nnamdi or Byron Maxwell and they forgot how to play football. Trading up for Fultz and he can no longer shoot. Trading for Andrew Bynum and he takes up bowling. Getting Webber and Brand when they have no more hops. David Robertson avg 65 G/yr 2.72 ERA for 9 years. 7 games in Philly and his career is basically over. Joe Banner used to get rid of guys a year or two early versus a year or two late and every team now seems to just get dudes when the wheels fall off.

      Butler is the only marquee guy they’ve landed outside of Simmons and Embiid that actually played well.

      Rest of them make up Bum City.

      • x%sure

        lol Bynum. Cavs gave him a shot after his knee and he eventually boycotted passing during practices, just shot the ball every time he got it.

  7. El Don

    At least Doc is right, which can be hopeful, Simmons/Embiid work very well together & the team wins when they play! Whoever started the silly idea they don’t needs to learn hoops first!

  8. Doc Rivers loves the pick and roll. The Sixers, under Brown, ran the 2nd least pick and roll in the NBA (only behind Houston). Harris should see immediate success with the pnr. Embiid? He’s not so great on the roll. Ben? He’ll flourish on the roll but will have to shoot in a pick and pop scenario.

    Doc Rivers is an upgrade from Brett Brown. Doc Rivers will keep his players accountable (see Butler’s interview with JJ).

    Anyone poo-pooing the new relationship just like’s putting this team down. Simple as that.

    • brian214

      There’s not a move the Sixers could make where people wouldn’t bash them. Never seen so many sports fans with animosity towards an average to decent team. I think the Lakers are the only team hated more right now in the league, and they certainly aren’t an average team. Hoping for a Philly championship not only for my personal satisfaction but also for everyone else’s meltdown.

      • bradthebluefish

        It’s an “everyone hates Philly” type of sports town. Even the Philly fans hate Philly teams.

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