Monday, June 24, 2013
Clippers pick, will roll with Rivers
By ESPN Stats & Info
Getty ImagesAfter spending the past nine seasons as head coach of the Boston Celtics, Doc Rivers will be running the Los Angeles Clippers next season. Rivers was the highest-paid coach in the NBA this season at $7 million. That was $1 million dollars more than Gregg Popovich.
Doc Rivers (left) will be coaching Blake Griffin with the Clippers this season.
Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, winner of two straight NBA titles, reportedly made about $3 million. Rivers made at least twice as much as 20 of the 29 other NBA head coaches last season.
Rivers compiled 416 wins in nine seasons with the Celtics, third-most in franchise history behind the legendary Red Auerbach and Tom Heinsohn. He guided Boston to the NBA Finals twice during his tenure, winning the 2008 title over the Los Angeles Lakers, the Celtics’ first championship since 1986.
If Chris Paul re-signs with the Clippers, what will that pairing create in Los Angeles?
Paul led the NBA this season with 1.06 points per play in the pick-and-roll offense, which included passes (among 50 players with 500 plays). Under Rivers, the pick-and-roll offense was Boston’s most-used play type with Rajon Rondo.
Paul’s points-per-play average on pick-and-rolls (including passes) hasn’t been outside the top five in the NBA since 2005-06.
In his career, Paul’s teams have had a defensive efficiency of 104.1 points per 100 possessions allowed when he’s on the court, one point worse than the NBA average.
The Celtics have had the best defensive efficiency in the NBA since Kevin Garnett joined the team in the 2007-08 season.
Rivers' success with the Celtics can be defined by the team's "Big Three", which came together in the 2007 offseason. The acquisition of Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett led to a personal Big Three for Doc Rivers -- as in, the middle three seasons of his nine-year Celtics tenure.
If you remove the middle three seasons of his Celtics career, he was one game over .500.
Uncertainty in Boston
After experiencing a 21-season championship drought, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen guided the Celtics to a title during their first season together in 2008. Boston would make it back to the Finals in 2010, falling to the Lakers in seven games. Kendrick Perkins would be traded the following season. Ray Allen left for Miami last offseason - and now questions surround Pierce and Garnett.