Following a dramatic loss in the NBA playoffs, the L.A. Clippers have announced that head coach Doc Rivers will leave the organization. The playoffs saw a three-game lead for the Clippers dissolve into an elimination. It was the second time the team had turned a three-game lead into a season-ending loss under Rivers’s leadership.
“When I took this job, my goals were to make this a winning basketball program, a free agent destination, and bring a championship to this organization,” Rivers wrote in a statement. “While I was able to accomplish most of my goals, I wasn’t able to see them all through.”
— doc rivers (@DocRivers) September 28, 2020
Rivers has been criticized as “never able to make the proper in-game adjustments when it really mattered,” as sports blog ClutchPoints noted. That reticence to swap players or make other on-the-court changes in the heat of a game has been a popular talking point in the days following the team’s second-round collapse.
Beyond his team’s performance, Rivers has been a beloved figure, who helped to see his players through the racist remarks and scandals of previous owner Donald Sterling, and has been an outspoken voice in the fight for racial justice.