The Philadelphia 76ers have recently made the bold decision to fire their head coach Doc Rivers. The news comes three days after the 76ers failed to make it to the Eastern Conference Finals, losing to the Boston Celtics in Game 7.
The loss marks the 10th loss for Doc Rivers in Game 7 of a playoff series, which is the most by any coach in NBA history. This is also three straight seasons of losing in the second round of the playoffs for Doc Rivers as Sixers’ head coach.
Doc Rivers’ tenure with the Sixers was overall a success. In the span of three seasons, he managed to achieve an outstanding record of 154-82 (.653). Which included attaining a remarkable amount of 54 triumphs during the franchise’s 2022-23 season marking their highest number since the year 2000-01.
Philadelphia 76ers need a fresh start with a new coach
The Philadelphia 76ers decision to fire Doc Rivers comes as no surprise given the team’s recent setbacks under his lead.
“Doc is one of the most successful coaches in NBA history, a future Hall of Famer, and someone I respect immensely,” 76ers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey said in a statement. “We’re grateful for all he did in his three seasons here and thank him for the important impact he made on our franchise. After having the chance to reflect upon our season, we decided that certain changes are necessary to further our goals of competing for a championship.”
Despite having the league MVP in Joel Embiid, the Philadelphia 76ers have been unable to make it to the NBA Finals in recent years. It’s time for the Sixers to move on and look for a fresh start with a new coach who can help their team reach its full potential.
The Future of James Harden
The team will also need to decide about the future of James Harden. Harden has a player option for next season worth $35.6 million, and some analysts believe that trading him could help the team build a stronger supporting cast.
per ESPN’s Bobby Marks, If Harden leaves, he could sign a $202M deal with another team or a $210M deal to stay in Philadelphia. The 76ers can’t sign Harden for a fifth season due to the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement. Even if he leaves in free agency, Philadelphia won’t have enough cap space to replace him and will only have the midlevel exception worth $12 million to add new players. The Sixers now join the league’s coaching job market, and finding the right coach will be crucial for their future success.
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