In case you haven’t heard, the Los Angeles Lakers are currently in need of a head coach. They fired Frank Vogel in classless fashion, letting the news leak about five seconds after the Lakers’ final game of the season, before Vogel had even been apprised of his fate, to say nothing of the fact that the front office that canned Vogel is the same one that delivered him a bogus roster only to pin Vogel as the problem.
Nobody likes the way it went down, and that includes Philadelphia 76ers coach Doc Rivers, who incidentally has been rumored as a candidate to replace Vogel as the next Lakers coach. Of course, the Lakers would like to think that everyone’s a candidate for their job, as if all these currently employed coaches are just waiting in line for the opportunity to coach a lottery roster with LeBron-sized expectations.
Rivers, for one, says he isn’t interested in a Hollywood relocation. He’s happy where he’s at. Furthermore, he doesn’t appreciate these baseless rumors flying around in the first place.
“It just makes our job so much harder,”Rivers recently told reporters, via the Philadelphia Inquirer. “I think it’s so unfair. I thought the Frank Vogel thing was so unfair. We work just like you guys work. How would you like your jobs to be mentioned every day? I mean, even if it’s someone wanting to have you, it’s just not right. I hate it. There’s nothing I can do about it.”
So you’re not a candidate for [the Lakers] job, Doc?
“No, I’m not a candidate,” he said. “I have a job, and I am very happy in my job.”
To be fair, what else is Rivers going to say when he’s asked a point-blank question about whether he’s a candidate for another job as his Sixers are in a first-round playoff series against the Raptors? He might be singing a different tune if the Sixers flame out and he is ousted in Philly. But right now? He has a job. A good job. A better job than the Lakers’ job. And he has three years left on his contract.
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All of this said, Rivers to the Lakers doesn’t feel out like some wild stretch. There are rumblings that Sixers players aren’t thrilled with some of his decisions and philosophies, and the Lakers are primed to be a sucker for the big-name hire. There’s a reason Rivers was asked this question, even if there was probably a better time to ask it. Obviously, Rivers isn’t going to say: “absolutely, I’d love to be the next Lakers coach” as he’s coaching the Sixers in the playoffs. I’d still call this a wait-and-see situation.