Doc Rivers said Thursday that Danny Ainge's claim that it was the coach's decision to leave Boston is untrue. (Andrew D. Bernstein/Getty Images)
Former Boston Celtics head coach Doc Rivers said Thursday he is "disappointed" in the way Danny Ainge labeled his departure from the team this summer to coach the Los Angeles Clippers next season.
Ainge, the team's president of basketball operations, helped orchestrate the move that released Rivers from the final three years of his five-year-$35 million contract with the Celtics. He had said to the media that it was ultimately Rivers' decision this summer to leave after having been the Celtics' coach for nearly a decade:
“It’s not a place that I chose for him to go or a place that I wanted him to be."
Rivers appeared on WEEI Boston on Thursday morning to say Ainge's claim is simply untrue:
"Honestly, I was very disappointed in that part of Danny’s press conference. Other than that, Danny and I have no issues. Danny knows, just like I know, that that’s not true."
Rivers went on to say that the agreement was reached with Ainge in a room where only the two of them were present, and it's unfair for anyone else to say how the decision was made. Rivers added that his move to Los Angeles was part of a larger organizational restructuring by the Celtics that included Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett being traded to the Brooklyn Nets later in the summer.
Rivers returns to Boston's TD Garden Dec. 11 when the Celtics host the Clippers for the one-and-only time this season.
MAHONEY: Report: Lamar Odom checks into drug and alcohol rehabilitation center