After the Atlanta Hawks managed to upset the Philadelphia 76ers last night in Game 7, the NBA world unloaded a heap of ridicule and criticism on the Sixers. The main target was Ben Simmons due to his struggles at the free-throw line, and especially the passiveness in the 4th quarters of every game. Of course, when your star takes three shots in the 4th quarter during a whole 7-game series, there has to be something wrong. But a fair share of the blame also went to their head coach Doc Rivers.
Doc has a reputation as one of the best coaches in the NBA, but his track record and reputation have started to downgrade in recent years. After winning the 2008 championship, Doc has pilled up a series of playoff blunders and disappointing exits from the Clippers to the Sixers now. The NBA world has taken notice, and one of the harshest reactions came from one of his former players.
Josh Smith decided to go live on IG after the game and blast Doc Rivers with numerous insults, some regarding basketball, and some regarding his personal life.
“Yeah, Doc Rivers. You talked all that s**t about Paul George and how Tyronn Lue was going to have the same offense for [him]. Shut yo bum ass up, man!”Josh Smith
Smith played under Doc Rivers for half a season with the Los Angeles Clippers back in the 2015-2016 season, before getting traded to the Houston Rockets. A big reason for that could be that Smith was only playing 14.3 minutes per game in the 32 games with the Clippers, even though he was regarded amongst the better power forwards in the league at the time. So obviously, the two aren’t huge fans of each other.
Still, Smith got his sweet revenge in the same season, being a vital part of the Rockets coming back from being down 3-1 in the Western Conference Semis and bouncing out Doc’s Clippers. So it is no surprise Josh Smith enjoyed seeing Doc’s team choke out once again in the playoffs. Even though Smith went way too far with his statements and beyond good taste, there is no dispute Doc has been one of the most overrated coaches in the NBA in recent years. The Sixers have a long off-season ahead of them, with a lot of work left to be done if they want to bounce back from this debacle. A lot of that improvement is on Ben Simmons, but a healthy amount is on Doc Rivers as well.
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