The Milwaukee Bucks didn’t even let the dust settle on the Adrian Griffin firing before they decided on their new head coach. In fact, one might even think that the front office had already secured the services of the one-time NBA champion head coach even before they gave Griffin the axe.
For his part, Rivers will now resume the role of an NBA head coach after just half a season in hiatus. Rivers seemed like he was enjoying his gig as an ESPN broadcaster but clearly, he’s more than willing to go back to what he knows and loves best.
Why Did Doc Rivers Accept Milwaukee Bucks Coaching Job?
NBA insider Bill Simmons recently presented a compelling theory as to why Rivers was so quick to jump on the opportunity to coach the Bucks. According to Simmons, it all boils down to Doc’s innate competitive nature:
“I’ve been trying to figure out why Doc Rivers decided to coach again,” Simmons said. “He was super happy. He loved coaching. He loved doing the media stuff. What changed? And I have not talked to him. This is a guess.
“Philly starts playing well. Everyone starts talking about (Joel) Embiid, the new offense. The under-the-radar piece of it is new coach Nick Nurse.
“James Harden goes to the Clippers and he’s playing great. Doc’s sitting there, super competitive dude. Hasn’t won a Final since 2008. Milwaukee fires their coach. They come to Doc: ‘Come home. You went to Marquette. This will be great.'”
Simmons then went on to point out how Rivers, as successful as he has been as a head coach, hasn’t been able to reach the pinnacle of the sport since leading the Boston Celtics to a championship back in 2008. According to the renowned NBA analyst, Rivers had found himself in undesirable situations:
“Giannis-Dame. A functional situation. Philly: dysfunctional. James Harden-Ben Simmons. Clippers: dysfunctional. Chirs Paul and Blake Griffin couldn’t stand each other. End of the Celtics’ run: dysfunctional. Rondo-Ray Allen, weird s**t.
“… He thinks to himself, ‘revenge time.’ And I think he takes the job because people are f**king competitive. Doc Rivers, still competitive. That’s my theory.”
— RingerNBA (@ringernba) January 24, 2024
As Simmons said, Rivers enters a whole different situation with the Bucks. The pressure is still going to be tremendous, but at least he will be coaching a team that gets along well.
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