Clippers, Doc Rivers agree to contract extension
LOS ANGELES (AP) The Clippers and coach Doc Rivers have agreed to a contract extension that will keep him around to oversee the post-Lob City era.
The team announced the extension Wednesday while not disclosing terms of the deal. Rivers was set to enter the final year of his five-year contract next season.
The 56-year-old coach has a 259-151 record in five years with the Clippers. They missed the playoffs this season for the first time in his tenure. Because of injuries, Rivers used a league-high 37 different starting lineups before the team finished with a 42-40 mark after trading Blake Griffin to Detroit in January.
Rivers was stripped of his duties as president of basketball operations a year ago. His undivided attention led to one of his best coaching jobs this season that began with nine new players on the roster after the offseason departures of Chris Paul, J.J. Redick and Jamal Crawford.
Despite the injuries that led to 11 players missing a total of 265 games, the Clippers kept their playoff hopes alive until the final week of the regular season.
Rivers said he’s proud of the team’s past success but ”there is more work to be done.”
With Paul and Griffin already gone, DeAndre Jordan, the last of the Big Three, could depart via free agency this summer if he and the team don’t agree on an extension.
Rivers will preside over the team’s remaking. The Clippers have two lottery picks in the June draft.
”Doc is one of the top coaches in the NBA, coming off one of his finest seasons since joining the Clippers,” owner Steve Ballmer said. ”We trust Doc to lead a competitive, tough, hard-working team while upholding a culture of accountability expected to resonate throughout the organization.”
Rivers is the winningest coach in franchise history with 259 victories and a winning percentage of .632. He is second to only San Antonio’s Gregg Popovich among active coaches with 846 career wins.
During his 19-year coaching career, he led the Boston Celtics to the 2008 NBA championship.
More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball