Doc Rivers is one of my all-time favorite coaches in Boston pro sports. He pretty much was a normal guy, as far as we could tell, who had a talent in motivating multi-million dollar athletes while treating the media with some modicum of respect.
Doc deserves to be on that same pedestal as “The Big 3, Part II” group that led the Celtics championship team in 2007. He earned an “A+” for managing those egos and bringing them together so well, so quickly.
But Doc blew this one ... big-time.
The former Celtics coach jumped ship from the Celtics, with years still left on his contract, for the chance to win a championship now. Unfortunately, Doc is like most people. He doesn’t want to wait.
And quite frankly, he got little to no criticism for the semi-selfish act because he was so well-liked by so many people around here.
But now, because of insensitive and racial comments made by a man we know little about here on the East coast, Donald Sterling, the Los Angeles Clippers owner, Rivers is feeling squeamish about coaching Sterling’s team right now, in the midst of this title contending run.
There’s one problem. Nobody, and I mean nobody that knows anything about the guy owned the moniker, “The worst owner in professional sports” for more than a decade, is surprised by his disparaging remarks about black people. Oh yeah, Sterling’s girlfriend is black, too.
Sterling’s had a history of thinking black people were beneath him.
A story yesterday by Business Insider noted several of those incidents, all easily retrievable on the Internet:
Former Clippers GM and Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor said in a deposition: “[Sterling] said, ‘Personally, I would like to have a white Southern coach coaching poor black players.’ And I was shocked. And he looked at me and said, ‘Do you think that’s a racist statement?’ I said, ‘Absolutely. That’s plantation mentality.’”