The LA Clippers parted ways with head coach Doc Rivers following their disappointing playoff performance. Since he was hired in 2013, Rivers has never been able to bring silverware to the franchise, and this sacking seems to have been long overdue. Following that, the assistant coach Tyronn Lue was given the main job.
Later, Lue spoke about how he reacted when Rivers was fired and how he took the job after the former head coach gave him his blessing. He said:
“It was tough. Even when people you compete against, people you don’t really like, when they get fired it’s tough. You never want to see anyone lose their job. But when it hits home and it’s someone close to you… it’s tough. I couldn’t have taken this job without Doc’s blessings. When the Clippers reached out, I made sure I talked to Doc and see how he felt about it. He said, ‘Ty, you absolutely have to do it. If you don’t take it, somebody else will. If I want anyone to have a job, it would be you, Ty.’ Once he gave me that blessing, it kind of went on from there.’”
Lue will be under pressure to take the Clippers to immediate success. His two superstars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George have one more year on their contract, followed by a player option. So if they aren’t able to make any improvement from the previous season, he could see them leaving.
According to Lue, the two stars might stay, but he knows that they will have to win for that. He said, “I think Kawhi and PG are here to stay for a long time,” Lue said. “It’s just, I think in their situation and where they want to be is here with the Clippers. We’ve just got to make it a great environment, and we have to win.”
The Clippers were solid in the regular season, but it all fell apart for them during the playoffs. Lue will have to get his players mentally prepared for the playoffs. He has the experience of winning a title (Cavs 2016), so he knows what the players need to do. Fans will be hoping that Lue can help the franchise get its first-ever silverware.
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