Philadelphia 76ers General Manager Elton Brand announced today that the team has hired Doc Rivers as its head coach.
Rivers will serve as the 25th head coach in franchise history, after a seven-season run as the head coach of the L.A. Clippers. Prior to being named the head coach in Los Angeles, Rivers spent nine seasons with Boston, where he led the Celtics to an NBA title in his fourth season. His 91 career postseason victories are the second-most among active NBA coaches and rank seventh all-time in NBA history.
In his seven seasons with the Clippers, Rivers led the franchise to the fifth-best record in the NBA (564-356, .631), reaching the playoffs six times. Rivers’ Clippers earned 50-plus wins in four straight seasons from 2013-17, including a franchise-record 57 victories in 2013-14, when Chris Paul and Blake Griffin each earned All-NBA honors.
“We are thrilled to welcome Doc Rivers to Philadelphia as the new head coach of the 76ers. Doc is one of the most respected and accomplished head coaches in the NBA,” Brand said. “I believe Doc can help us unlock our full potential on the floor and further our pursuit of an NBA championship. I also respect and appreciate that his impact extends far beyond the basketball court as he truly embraces the platform he has to drive positive change in society. Doc is a great fit for our team and city, and I’m excited for what the future holds with him as our head coach.”
In 21 seasons as an NBA head coach with the Clippers, Boston and Orlando, Rivers holds a 943-681 (.581) career record. His 943 wins are the second-most among active NBA coaches, while ranking 11th all-time in league history. Rivers’ teams have qualified for the postseason in 16 of his 21 seasons.
“I am really excited about the opportunity to be joining a world-class franchise, a franchise whose legend inspired my nickname,” Rivers said. “This is a city that loves sports and loves their teams. It’s a city that values hard work and that is exactly what we are going to do and who we are going to be. We are ready to do good things in Philadelphia.”
In Boston, Rivers amassed a 416-305 (.577) record over nine seasons, including consecutive 60-win campaigns from 2007-09. Rivers led the Celtics to a 59-47 (.557) overall playoff record during his tenure, reaching the 2010 NBA Finals, in addition to defeating the Lakers in the 2008 Finals. Prior to Boston, Rivers spent four-plus seasons with Orlando, earning NBA Coach of the Year honors in his first season as an NBA head coach. He’d go on to lead the Magic to three consecutive postseason appearances from 2000-03.
Prior to coaching, Rivers was selected by Atlanta with the No. 31 overall pick in the 1983 NBA Draft, following a standout career at Marquette. A one-time All-Star, Rivers appeared in 864 games (605 starts) over 13 NBA seasons with San Antonio, New York, the Clippers and Atlanta, tallying 10.9 points, 3.0 rebounds, 5.7 assists and 1.8 steals in 27.3 minutes per game. As a player, Rivers’ teams made the playoffs in 10 of his 13 seasons, as he appeared in 81 career postseason contests, notching 11.4 points, 3.3 rebounds and 5.9 assists. Rivers remains Atlanta’s all-time leader in assists, with 3,866 for his Hawks career, over 100 more than the next-closest player.
Internationally, Rivers represented the U.S. at the 1982 FIBA World Championship, leading his country to a silver medal, and earning tournament MVP honors after averaging a team-best 18.6 points per game. Over his three-year collegiate career, the Chicago-area native posted 13.9 points, 4.6 assists and 2.3 steals. His No. 31 was retired by the Golden Eagles on Feb. 14, 2004.