Doc Rivers is known for talking up his own players -- he's the same coach who earlier this year compared DeAndre Jordan to Celtics legend Bill Russell. Rivers' newest target is star forward Blake Griffin, who the coach says deserve the number two slot in MVP voting, ahead of LeBron James.
While speaking to Arash Markazi of ESPNLosAngeles.com, Rivers said if he had an MVP vote, he'd vote for Thunder forward Kevin Durant first and Griffin second:
"I think second because I'm coaching him," Rivers said of Griffin. "I think Durant has had the best year. I still think LeBron [James] is still the best player in the NBA but I think Durant has had an MVP year. I don't know who has had a better year. And I honestly think Blake would be right behind him."
MAHONEY: Alternative year-end awards Griffin is averaging a career-high 24.1 points per game, along with 9.6 rebounds. James is averaging 27.0 points, 6.9 rebounds and 6.4 assists per game, all on 56.9% shooting. But Griffin's Clippers have 55 wins in the formidable Western Conference, while LeBron and the 53-win Heat are still battling the Pacers for the number one seed in the East.