The on-and-off negotiations between the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Clippers finally came to a resolution this weekend, as the Celtics and Clippers agreed on a deal that would send Doc Rivers to the Clippers for a 2015 first round draft pick. The only hurdle left is for Doc Rivers and the Clippers to agree on the contract language.
Now that Rivers is heading to LA, who will coach the Celtics? Most likely, a young coach will probably get the nod to be the successor to Doc Rivers. Don’t expect the new coach to be Brian Shaw. The Denver Nuggets named Shaw their head coach for the upcoming season. With Shaw no longer an option, let’s look at some candidates that could potentially replace Rivers in Boston.
Lionel Hollins – After leading the Memphis Grizzilies to the Western Conference Finals, it was reported that Memphis would not bring back Hollins as their head coach. Since then, Hollins has interviewed for the Nuggets and Clippers for their vacant head coaching position. He didn’t get either, as the Nuggets chose Brian Shaw and the Clippers acquired Doc Rivers from the Celtics. Hollins would be a great fit for the Celtics. Back in 2004, the Celtics made Hollins an offer to become an assistant coach in Boston, but he denied it. So that shows you, Ainge has had interest in Hollins in the past and will most likely get an interview with the Celtics.
David Fizdale – This would be a good option for the Celtics, because he helps develop young players. You can look at Mario Chalmers and Norris Cole for example. Fizdale would thrive in a rebuilding situation like Boston, but the problem getting Fizdale is the Heat. Would they let him interview with their biggest rival, the Celtics? The Heat love Fizdale and would be hesitant to let him go.
Tyronne Lue – The Celtics absolutely love him. Lue has been described as a head coach in the making, and would be perfect for the job. The only problem is Doc Rivers wants to take Lue to the Clippers with him, so he could be part of his staff. If Lue doesn’t end up going to the Clippers with Doc, he would be under serious consideration for the vacant head coaching job.
Lawrence Frank – After his dreadful run with the Pistons, Frank may be a realistic candidate to replace Rivers. He was assistant coach for the Celtics in 2010, so he is familiar with the team. Frank is also familiar with rebuilding situations, as he had to go through it with the Nets and Pistons. Jason Kidd, head coach of the Nets, is trying to recruit him to become assistant coach of the Nets.
Danny Ainge – I know this would be unlikely to happen, but what if Ainge decides he wants to give coaching another chance. Ainge was actually pretty good at coaching, as his record as a head coach is 136-90, which is impressive.
This will be a long process for the Celtics, but will take their time on finding the right coach.