Woj: Sixers Dismiss Doc Rivers after three seasons
The Doc Rivers era in Philadelphia is over.
Rivers was hired by the team as 25th head coach in franchise history on Oct. 2, 2020, replacing Brett Brown.
“Doc is one of the most successful coaches in NBA history, a future Hall of Famer, and someone I respect immensely," Sixers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey said in a press release.
"We’re grateful for all he did in his three seasons here and thank him for the important impact he made on our franchise. After having the chance to reflect upon our season, we decided that certain changes are necessary to further our goals of competing for a championship.”
The Sixers have dismissed Rivers after three seasons. and three disappointing playoff exits, including an embarrassing 112-88 loss to the Boston Celtics on Sunday. Overall, Rivers went 154-82 (.653) during the regular-season in Philadelphia.
"Philadelphia was torn about this over the past 48 hours after the loss to Boston," said Wojnarowski on First Take. "Ultimately three straight seasons of falling short, they felt that had to break past that."
"This is an organization that sees a very tight window to try and win around Joel Embiid."
So who could be next?
Per Wojnarowski, the names you can expect to hear around the Sixers include former NBA champions, Mike Budenholzer, Nick Nurse, and Frank Vogel, along with two former Sixers assistants, Mike D'Antoni and Monty Williams.
Some interesting names, but the big one to keep an eye on would be D'Antoni, simply because of his relationship and past history with James Harden.
D'Antoni and Harden were a pairing during the duos time in Houston, failing to reach an NBA final. However, with Harden holding a player option, if the team wants him to return, they may look for a coach that he will sign off on and D'Antoni would probably fit that criteria.
Vogel is a guy with local ties, growing up in Wildwood, and winning an NBA title with the Lakers during the 2019-2020 bubble season. He spent time with the Sixers as an assistant during the 2004-2005 season.
Budenholzer and Nurse were both dismissed after winning NBA titles, Budenholzer after a disappointing first-round exit this season with the Bucks. Nurse won an NBA title with Kwahi Leonard and Toronto in 2019.
Sam Cassell has been a part of Rivers's staff since Rivers was hired.
So how will this all pay out? The team needs to decide what they want to do with Harden and Embiid as the duo to bring them to where they want to get - a title.