“That Was All on Them”: Former NBA Champion Slams LA Clippers for Putting Blame on Doc Rivers

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The LA Clippers attracted immense criticism as they got dragged out of the league by the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Semifinals. It was an embarrassing Game 7 for them, and a historic comeback for the Nuggets from 3-1 down.

After a bitter ending to their season, the Clippers fired their head coach, Doc Rivers. The franchise looks rather unsettled at the moment. Their two star players, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George gave a showdown against the Nuggets, and it turned out to be quite a disappointing day for their fans.

Regardless of how the series progressed, Game 7 was a complete shame for the Clippers. Mike Malone’s team didn’t let them score a single point in the last quarter until five minutes to the buzzer. That accounts for 12 minutes of the final segment.

Clutch time is known to be the expertise of star players, and the Clippers’ main men, Kawhi and PG, completely failed in their execution in those moments. The blame seems to have been flung on Doc; he was removed from his post after seven years of coaching the Clippers.

LA Clippers get into a banter during Playoffs 2020
Sep 11, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; LA Clippers forward Marcus Morris Sr. (middle) and Denver Nuggets forward Paul Millsap (right) are separated by players and officials during the first half of game five in the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Should the Clippers’ fallout this season be blamed on Doc Rivers?

Four-time NBA champion, John Salley didn’t seem to agree with this ‘blame game’ stopping at the coach and said, “That was all of them [the players].” Salley expressed his shock at the Clippers going 12 minutes without any point.

“Last 12 minutes, you either go to the Western Conference Finals or you go home,” Salley said. “And you don’t score in 12 minutes and you’re the two stars I’m talking to, Kawhi and Paul George… There’s just no way that could have happened, you could not have gone 12 minutes without scoring. And for you to blame Doc? … I guess Doc got you up 3-1, so if you then lose those three in a row, is it Doc?”

The former NBA player said that “seven games out of 82” are on the coach, but 90% of the season depends on the players. He added, “Coaches are great on how to rush the player and how you manage your team through the playoffs. The rest of the time is all players.”

What’s your take on the Clippers’ firing Doc Rivers?

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