Doc Rivers eviscerates Clippers after lospsided loss to Warriors
The Los Angeles Clippers fell 121-104 to the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday night and the blowout nature of the score didn’t tell half the story of how poorly the team played, at least from the perspective of head coach Doc Rivers.
Rivers absolutely eviscerated the team after the loss, not only for how it played but also what he perceived as a lackadaisical reaction by players after the game.
The nonplussed coach emerged from the locker room and absolutely laid into the team to reporters.
“Tonight was great in the aspect, I kind of said, ‘Something’s going to happen tonight. It’s going to be good or bad for us. We’re going to find out exactly what we need to find out.’ And what we found is that they’re way better than us right now,” Rivers began, via the Orange County Register. “It’s not even…if this was a playoff series, we’d lose in four games. It would be a destruction.”
But Rivers was only getting warmed up, but did turn some of the criticism on himself.
“From our standpoint, I’ve got to do a better job. I told the guys that. This is not their fault. I’ve got to figure it out. I’ve never been in a game where a team scores 65 points and we have one foul,” he continued. “That, to the core of me, bothers me to no end. I mean, I’ve never seen that before. And I think the foul was late, and it was a mistake. It probably wasn’t a foul. For me, I’m doing something wrong because that’s as soft as you can probably get in a game. One foul? At halftime? Are you (expletive) kidding me? That’s as bad as I’ve seen. Forget what we’ve got to fix. That, over anything, tells me we weren’t competitive.”
When asked if the team is bringing the right mindset into games, Rivers redirected his ire at the players again, saying that he expected a game against the Warriors to be a good measuring stick to where the team was at this early stage of the season.
“I don’t think we’re bringing anything into these games. Period. But, it’s funny. I was looking at the schedule, and I was like ‘We’ll find out right here.’ We’re 3-1, and it’s great to be 3-1 and play poorly. It really is,” Rivers said. “But, you know when you’re not playing well, and you know when you’re not right. And I can sense it. But, I wanted to see this game. I could sense it, and it told me what I thought, if you want me to be honest.”
And then Rivers unleashed the money quote of the diatribe when asked what he had to say in the locker room after the loss.
“I didn’t say much. I just let them blow smoke up each other’s asses,” he said. “That’s all they did, in my opinion. I just think if you’re going to talk, you’ve got to be real. I’m not a big fan of group meetings unless they’re real group meetings. I think we’re getting close with the talk today, bet we’re not there.”
The Clippers were a trendy pick to be among the top Western Conference contenders heading into the season. The team has stumbled a bit out of the gate, but at 3-2 (which is a misrepresentation of how poorly the team has played), obviously all is not lost. Despite not playing up to their capabilities at the onset, the team simply has far too much talent — not to mention an accomplished head coach — not to right the ship in some manner.
Rivers clearly has an issue with how the team is playing. Perhaps lighting a fire under the team with some inflammatory comments will help the players get their heads screwed on straight and begin to play the way their head coach believes they can play.
Otherwise, expect more oratory fireworks from Rivers. The man undoubtedly is frustrated and appears more than happy to savage the team if he feels the player deserve it.