10:58 PM ET
On Thursday, Doc Rivers snatched an opportunity to sculpt a young tandem — Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons — whose stardom would tantalize any coach, but who have yet to make good on their talent. Rivers enters a Philadelphia 76ers organization with title aspirations that believes an upgrade on the bench can realize those expectations.
The Sixers have a ton of work to do, both in the front office and down on the court. They need shooters and shot creators so they can develop a competitive offensive gameplan. Rivers will be charged with the latter, but the bulk of Rivers’ grade will ultimately rest on how he corrals, inspires and teaches Embiid and Simmons.
It’s not unlike the move he made seven years ago, when Rivers left Boston for Los Angeles with an assignment to lead an intriguing LA Clippers team that had tasted some moderate success yet not achieved its full potential. The core of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan had exhausted its belief in Vinny Del Negro as head coach and wanted someone who could instill a championship spirit. With a rebuild scheduled in Boston, Rivers’ eye began to wander. When Paul