NBA approves Doc Rivers deal
The NBA has approved the Los Angeles Clippers’ acquisition of coach Doc Rivers in a deal with the Boston Celtics, a league source confirmed to ESPNBoston.com’s Jackie MacMullan.
The league’s approval, according to the source, means that the official announcement of the deal currently is in the hands of the two teams.
Sources confirmed on Sunday that the Clippers will sign Rivers to a three-year contract worth $21 million. The Celtics, who agreed to release Rivers from the remaining three years and $21 million remaining on his current contract, will receive a 2015 first-round draft pick as compensation in the deal.
League and teams sources also confirmed that any deal presently involving Kevin Garnett and the Clippers is on hold in light of NBA commissioner David Stern’s objections to the appearance that the trade was related to the deal involving Rivers.
One source with knowledge of the NBA’s thinking told ESPN.com that the league does not intend to change its stance as expressed by Stern in multiple radio interviews Thursday, meaning that the league would view any subsequent trade agreement between the Celtics and Clippers involving Garnett to be part of the Rivers deal and thus in violation of league rules.
Rivers called Celtics forward Jeff Green on Monday to inform him of the coaching change. Although he acknowledged he was disappointed, Green also said that he understands “this is a business.”
“I can’t speak for the other guys, but I’m not angry at all,” Green told MacMullan. “I’m happy for him.”
The rebuilding Celtics will be tasked with finding a replacement for Rivers, who coached Boston to a league championship in 2008 and an appearance in the NBA Finals two years later.
The Celtics reached the playoffs in each of the past six seasons under Rivers, winning five consecutive Atlantic Division titles from 2007-08 to 2011-12.
The agent for Brian Shaw, who reportedly was a candidate for the Clippers job prior to the Rivers deal, is interested in the Celtics’ vacancy, his agent confirmed to the Boston Globe.
The 47-year-old Shaw, an associate head coach with the Indiana Pacers, spent the first two-plus seasons of his playing career with the Celtics after being selected by Boston in the first round of the 1988 draft.
“[Shaw] would enjoy working for the team that he started his career with,” his agent, Jerome Stanley, told the Globe.