“Kawhi Could Have Stopped it”: NBA Analyst Blames Kawhi Leonard for Doc Rivers’ Exit

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September 30, 2020 11:00 pm

The Los Angeles Clippers were expected to do great things this season. However, they had one of the biggest choke jobs in the Playoffs and blew a 3-1 lead in the WCSF. As a result, the organization sacked head coach Doc Rivers after seven years of service.

In the last seven years, this was the second instance where Rivers’ team couldn’t hold a 3-1 lead. Both times, the Clippers had a great roster and could have easily closed out the series.

Additionally, both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, the two superstars of the L.A. Clippers, vanished during the final quarter of the Game 7. Although they failed to show up in the decisive game, Doc Rivers paid the price for that.

NBA analyst Shannon Sharpe believes Kawhi could have stopped Doc’s firing if he wished so.

“Steve Ballmer is in a situation that no owner wants to find themselves in. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George can opt-out, they [Clippers] don’t have a draft pick until 2026, they have mortgaged their future. 

Are you telling me that he is gonna go against the wishes of Kawhi Leonard? Who can opt out? With no draft picks? He never wants to be what the Clippers used to be. They were laughing stock, at least now people take them serious. Kawhi Leonard could have STOPPED IT, if he said I want Doc back.

“…Kawhi Leonard could have saved Doc Rivers’ job, he did not. If you do not give an endorsement, it’s an indictment, and the person asking you the question will take it as such.”

As Sharpe said, the Clippers organization is in a dire situation with no draft picks for the foreseeable future. Their best bet is to make sure Leonard and George are happy and commit long term with the franchise.

Can the Los Angeles Clippers make a comeback next season in absence of Doc Rivers?

Sep 15, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; The Los Angeles Clippers sit on the sidelines during the second half in game seven of the second round of the 2020 NBA Playoffs against the Denver Nuggets at ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

While the current season is over for the Clippers, they can always try again next year to win a title. Till that time, they have Kawhi and George on the roster, the Clippers will be in the conversation of title contenders in the league.

However, if the Clippers do fail to make it work next year, both PG13 and the Klaw can opt-out of their contracts and become free agents. However, this will put the Clippers franchise in a very poor condition.

But what do you think? Can the Clippers win it all in the West?

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Aikansh Chaudhary

Aikansh Chaudhary is an NBA columnist for Essentially Sports. Previously, he helped rank various websites using the latest SEO techniques, and wrote over 2000 articles during his stint as a freelance writer. A die hard Lakers fan, Aikansh will forever uphold LeBron James as the GOAT.

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