Doc Rivers Rumors
The Clippers don’t have any picks in Thursday’s NBA Draft, but that doesn’t mean Doc Rivers and his new right-hand man Jerry West will be sitting this one out. “We’re going to be active, I’ll just say that,” Rivers said. “Whether that means getting in (to the draft) or not, but we want to be active.”
So what’s the plan for Thursday? “We know what we want to do,” Rivers said. “Obviously, you never know if you can. That’s one thing with the draft.” Crediting Lawrence Frank, the Clippers’ executive vice president of basketball operations, for much of the work on the ground, Rivers said, “We know exactly what five or six guys we would do it for. We just have to stay disciplined.”
West, who officially joined the Clippers on Monday as a consultant, will be heavily involved. Rivers said when West first arrived he started listing players the Clippers should target, a list that turned out to match the one the Clippers had already made. Rivers said owner Steve Ballmer started laughing and said, “Jeez, you guys are a match made in heaven.”
The grand plan now for West and his new Clippers colleagues, president of basketball operations and head coach Doc Rivers and executive vice president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank? Targeting the biggest fish in next summer’s free agent sea: LeBron James.
Davis didn’t hold back on Austin’s old man, either, saying he thinks the Clippers will give him one more season before they fire him. “I think he’s going to get saved this year, but I feel like next year he’s going to be on the hot seat because he’s taking something he’s now created,” Davis said. “Blake [Griffin] and DeAndre [Jordan] and all those guys were there before he really got there, so this is his first time really mixing it up with those big guys. I think they’re going to give him another chance and get his ass out of there.”
West, who is under contract with the Warriors through July, was at the Clippers’ facility Tuesday and talked with owner Steve Ballmer and coach Doc Rivers about joining them. “I will tell you I had a very intriguing meeting with the Clippers,” West said. “Steve Ballmer is going to be a sensational owner. But I’m 79 years old and I know how much that I value the game of basketball. I know what it’s done for me and I’m still really competitive. I’m just not so sure that anywhere is a good fit for me.”
West recently met with Clippers owner Steve Ballmer and Doc Rivers, the team’s coach and president of basketball operations, said the executives. The Clippers got permission from the Warriors to speak with West, one executive said. “But nothing is going to happen any time soon,” the executive said.