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Doc Rivers postgame press conference (Video)

Doc-RiversDoc Rivers all but guaranteed himself a hefty fine from the NBA with his postgame press conference on Tuesday night, and I’m sure he doesn’t care. Like most others, Rivers felt that the officiating crew screwed the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 5 against the Oklahoma City Thunder.

More specifically, Rivers was furious when the Thunder were awarded a crucial possession after Reggie Jackson clearly lost the ball out of bounds.

“In my opinion let’s take away replay,” Rivers said. “Let’s take away the replay system, because that’s our ball and we win the game. And we got robbed because of that call. Everybody in the arena saw it and everybody was shocked when (the officials) said Oklahoma City. That was our ball.”

Rivers even felt that Matt Barnes fouled Reggie Jackson, but he said it was clear it should have been the Clippers ball after it went out of bounds and no foul was called.

“Whether it was a foul or not — it was — but they didn’t call it,” Rivers added. “He didn’t see the foul, but he had to be honest on the replay. That didn’t happen.”

To his credit, Rivers admitted that his players did plenty to blow the game. He criticized them for trying to milk the clock with three minutes left and for turning the ball over. He even said they made a mistake by fouling Russell Westbrook when he was shooting a 3-pointer with 6.4 seconds left, though that looked like a b.s. foul.

“I don’t want to hear that they didn’t have that replay,” he said. “That’s a bunch of crap. That’s what I heard. That’s a bunch of crap and y’all know it. … We made a comedy of errors. Having said that, we still have the right to win the game if the ball says it’s our ball.

“We have two more games to play, but that could be a series defining call. And that’s not right.”

Rivers has every right to be furious. The conspiracy theories have already littered the internet, ranging from the NBA trying to quiet the Donald Sterling situation as quickly as possible to a Kevin Durant-LeBron James NBA Finals already being predetermined. It’s tough to argue against any of that when the referees blow a call that badly.

Doc Rivers on Donald Sterling: Doesn’t sound like much of an apology

Doc RiversDoc Rivers is blocking out most of the Donald Sterling-related news in an effort to focus on preparing his team during the NBA playoffs, and he admits he didn’t even watch Sterling’s interview with Anderson Cooper Monday night. But Doc heard enough about it to know that Sterling’s apology was not much of one.

Rivers must have specifically heard that Sterling bashed Magic Johnson during the interview, because the Clippers coach took exception to that portion of it.

“Obviously I know who Magic is,” Rivers said via ESPN Los Angeles. “I’ll stand by Magic every day of the year because I’ve known him for a long time. Having said that, I don’t know what’s going on out there. I tried not to get involved in that part of it right now. Whatever it is, that doesn’t sound like much of an apology to me.”

Rivers also added that he was “glad” Sterling finally apologized. He would have liked to see Sterling apologize sooner, but he’ll still take it.

It’s funny that Rivers admits he didn’t even watch the interview but his takeaway is that it wasn’t much of an apology. That goes to show you how the media influences perception. But it’s not like that’s an inaccurate view; Sterling could not have done a worse job of asking for forgiveness. He came across as an insincere phony.

Doc Rivers on Donald Sterling audio: It was a distraction

Doc RiversDoc Rivers said exactly what we already knew about the Donald Sterling audio recording: it was a distraction for the Clippers.

The Sterling audio came out late on Friday April 25, when the Clippers were up 2-1 in their series with the Golden State Warriors. The Dubs beat up a distracted Clippers team 118-97 that Sunday to tie the series, though the Clips won two of the next three to capture the series in seven games.

“This was a distraction,” Rivers said of the Sterling comments in an interview with ESPN’s Michael Wilbon. “The first [team] meeting after this came out … when I looked at [the players'] faces, they were angry, they wanted to DO something. … As a coach, I had to think about it. I’m not going to kid you, I walked out with my [Clippers] gear on, because I need the players to see me with the gear on, but it wasn’t easy to wear the gear on that day. Because at that moment, you’re representing something else, and that was hard.”

However upset they were, the players only put together a small demonstration before Game 4. They took off their warmups and dropped them at center court. They also wore their undershirts inside-out to cover the team logo and name. There was a possibility of them doing more for Game 5, but NBA Commissioner Adam Silver banned Sterling for life, which was a satisfactory punishment for most.

Rivers has been an admirable leader for the Clippers. He maintains an excellent perspective and has the respect of his players. And he didn’t let Sterling’s comments prevent him from coaching his team to a series victory when most would not have been able to do so.

Doc Rivers pumped after Clippers won, drops a F— yeah! (GIF)

GIF: Clippers coach Doc Rivers celebrates Game 7 win over War... on Twitpic

Doc RiversDoc Rivers is generally a pretty level-headed coach, but even he showed plenty of emotion after his Los Angeles Clippers beat the Golden State Warriors in Game 7 of their playoff series Saturday night.

As time was ticking down on the Clippers’ series-clinching win, Doc dropped a big “f– yeah!” and pumped up the fans.

GIF: Doc Rivers - F*** YEAH!!!! on Twitpic

Rivers’ uncharacteristically emotional reaction makes plenty of sense. The Clippers went through a hellish week, survived it, and won the series. That’s a big testament to his leadership as the coach. And as he said after the game, the adversity was good for the team:

Report: Doc Rivers will ‘never return’ to coach under Donald Sterling

Doc-Rivers-cries-return-to-BostonDoc Rivers has kept his future plans vague since the Donald Sterling audio recording first surfaced last week. Considering Rivers probably has no idea what he is going to decide when the Los Angeles Clippers’ season comes to an end, that makes sense. But according to one report, he has already decided he will not return to LA next season if Sterling is still in charge.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski, sources told Yahoo Sports that Rivers “will never return as president and coach under Sterling” next year. And if Rivers leaves town, that will likely start a trickle-down effect where several top players demand to be let out of their contracts or traded. Simply put, the worst is yet to come.

On Tuesday, NBA commissioner Adam Silver will announce the league’s findings and what the future holds for Sterling and the Clippers franchise. Wojnarowski says Silver has been studying a “nuclear option” which would allow him to summon a vote of league owners to force Sterling out.

[Read more...]

Doc Rivers slips up, calls Chris Paul ‘Cliff’ (Video)

The folks at State Farm are going to be very proud.

Cliff Paul State FarmDuring his postgame press conference following the Clippers’ 98-96 win over the Warriors in Game 3 of their playoff series on Thursday night, coach Doc Rivers slipped and accidentally called Chris Paul “Cliff.”

Rivers quickly corrected himself, but the fact that CP3’s State Farm alias crept into his mind is pretty funny.

I wonder if the team calls Chris by that name just to mess with him. I mean, the man was definitely born to assist:

H/T Beyond the Buzzer

Doc Rivers: Too many weak fouls called on Blake Griffin

Doc RiversDoc Rivers believes that the referees called a few too many weak fouls on Blake Griffin during Game 1 of the Clippers’ playoff series with the Golden State Warriors Saturday, which they lost at home 109-105.

Griffin only played 19 minutes before fouling out in the final minute of the game, and he never really got into a rhythm.

Rivers was asked after the game whether he felt the officials were primed to call the series closely because of some of the pre-series talk, such as Klay Thompson saying Griffin is a flopper.

“Do you want me to get fined? Come on, why would you ask me that question?” Rivers responded with a smile and laugh before answering honestly.

“Yeah, I do, I thought all the hype had an impact on how the game was called,” said Rivers. “Lot of tight, touch fouls. I thought three of [Blake's] six were probably touch fouls. Same thing with CP. But the way I look at it is both teams have to play under the same rules. And they did a better job playing under the same rules that we have to play under.

“I wish there were less calls in that way, yeah.”

So Rivers got to make his point while still saying the game was called fairly. That’s Rivers being masterful.

It’s fine for the Clippers, because the officials just won’t call as many fouls on Griffin in Game 2 which should allow them to tie the series.