PHILADELPHIA (CBS/AP) — The Philadelphia 76ers have their next head coach. The Sixers on Thursday hired Doc Rivers as the franchise’s 25th head coach, sources confirm to Eyewitness News.
Rivers comes to the Sixers just a few days after the Los Angeles Clippers fired him after seven seasons. The 58-year-old is considered to be the best coach in Clippers’ history with the most wins (356), most playoff appearances (six), and top winning percentage (.641).
In his seven seasons as the Clippers’ head coach, Rivers was 356-208, taking Los Angeles to the West second round three times but never the conference finals.
The Clippers went 49-23 in the regular season, the fourth-best record in franchise history. Rivers has been the coach in five of the Clippers’ six best regular seasons.
A 34-year NBA veteran — 13 as a player, 21 as a coach — Rivers comes to Philly with a lengthy résumé. Rivers has a 943-681 record with 16 playoff appearances and an NBA title with the 2008 Boston Celtics. He began his head coaching career with the Orlando Magic, from 1999 until 2004.
Rivers comes to the Sixers having coached several star players, including Tracy McGrady, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, Chris Paul, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Sixers forward Tobias Harris played in 87 games for Rivers before the Clippers traded him to the Sixers in 2018-19.
His biggest challenge with the Sixers will be figuring out how best to use stars Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid and elevating the team back into the conversation of an NBA title contender.
Rivers replaces Brett Brown as the Sixers’ head coach.
Brown was fired on Aug. 24 after seven seasons with the Sixers. The Sixers had two 50-win seasons and three consecutive early playoff exits under Brown, who was hired as the team began The Process.
The Sixers reportedly also interviewed Tyronn Lue, Mike D’Antoni and Billy Donovan. Donovan was hired by the Chicago Bulls.
Stay with CBSPhilly.com for this developing story.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)