Doc Rivers will no longer have a front office title with the Clippers.
Head coach Doc Rivers will no longer have a front office title with the Clippers, owner Steve Ballmer told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Rivers formerly held the title of president of basketball operations. Executive vice president of basketball operations Lawrence Frank will now run basketball operations and hold the top role. Rivers will remain a “strong voice” in the Clippers’ decision-making process and will function side-by-side with Frank. Wojnarowski reports the two men have a “strong personal and professional relationship.”
“I've owned the team for three years now, and I really better understand what an owner's responsibility is -- and it turns out that running a franchise and coaching are two enormous and different jobs," Ballmer told ESPN. "The notion that one person can fairly focus on them and give them all the attention they need isn't the case. To be as good as we can be, to be a championship franchise, we need two functioning strong people building teams out beneath them. There needs to be a healthy discussion and debate with two strong, independent minded people.”
Last year, Rivers and Ballmer promoted Frank to run the front office on a daily basis. Rivers was hired as president and coach in 2013 and won a title in 2008 with the Celtics. He signed a five-year, $50 million extension in 2014 in that dual role that will continue to be honored, according to USA Today’s Sam Amick.
The Clippers’ move is similar to the Hawks’ decision to make Mike Budenholzer solely their head coach and taking away his president role.
L.A. lost Chris Paul, J.J. Redick and Jamal Crawford this summer and have retooled with a number of key additions including Danilo Gallinari, Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams and Milos Teodosic.