In an offseason that's been full of rumors, one of the biggest ones was a possible Blake Griffin trade that would have him coming to Boston. Los Angeles Clippers coach and former Celtics coach Doc Rivers recently went on Adrian Wojnarowski's podcast to shed some light on those rumors and he vehemently denies ever discussing any deals with Danny Ainge. Via Jay King of Masslive.com:
Denying any truth to Blake Griffin trade rumors, the Los Angeles Clippers' Doc Rivers said he and Boston Celtics president of basketball operations Danny Ainge have only talked about golf this offseason -- not about any blockbuster deals that would shake up both of their rosters.
During an appearance on The Vertical Podcast with Adrian Wojnarowski, Rivers stressed he intends to keep Griffin in Los Angeles and believes the Clippers could take another step forward with their current core.
"Danny and I have talked twice this summer," said Rivers, who controls Los Angeles Clippers personnel decisions in addition to his duties as the team's head coach. "One (conversation) was about the British Open, and one was about another golf tournament. That's about it."
Obviously Doc Rivers is going to deny discussing any trades that involved Blake Griffin but I don't believe him for a second. The Clippers realize that both Chris Paul and Blake Griffin have contracts that end after this year and given that they haven't made any legitimate run at the title, it would be better for them to get something in a trade for either Paul or Griffin rather than to have them just walk in free agency. However, Rivers went on to say that he believes their championship window is still open:
"This could be just speak, but I believe it: I think we are ready to win," Rivers told Wojnarowski in the podcast, which was released early Thursday morning. "I think we are ready to make the next step because we have gone through stuff. And either that stuff can pull you apart to the point you just can't put it back together, or it's to the point where guys are tired of it and they're ready to win.
I don't know what's in the water over there in LA but I'm pretty sure everyone can agree that the Clippers have virtually no chance to win a title with the Spurs and Warriors at the top of the Western Conference. Doc didn't stop there and also took some shots at Celtics media by claiming the Griffin rumors were made up stories:
"It just tells you the different times. Things have changed. Everyone believes that they're media now. And I feel for guys like you, and there's so many good, credible guys. And then there's some of the guys who are bloggers who have nothing to do with the sport. I had my young son trace where this started – the Blake-to-Boston rumor, let's go there. ... My son traced it to, I think it was a Boston radio talk show. And the guy didn't say that we had been talking. He said Blake would be one of the guys that the Celtics should go after. That started the next step, to the next step, to the next thing you know it blew up. And that stuff is tough."
Listen, rumors don't start out of nowhere, especially in the NBA. Where there is smoke, there usually is fire. The Blake Griffin to Boston rumors didn't fire up until reputable news outlets starting to report that there was some interest on the Celtics side in acquiring him. From there, Celtics media reported on it and blogs like ours simply gave out trade ideas that would be possible. Obviously Doc is going to have to deny knowing anything, but to insinuate it was made up is pretty ridiculous.
Another note of interest in Rivers' discussion with Woj, he stated that if Paul Pierce wanted to retire, he would waive him and allow him to sign and retire as a Boston Celtic. Brad Turner of the LA Times also tweeted that Pierce would come back for another year but shortly after stated that he's still not certain on a return:
Paul Pierce is planning on returning to the Clippers for the 2016-17 season, his 19th in the NBA, per source.— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) July 27, 2016
However, another source said Paul Pierce is still weighing everything and will make a final decision in a few weeks.— Brad Turner (@BA_Turner) July 27, 2016
Well it's good to hear that Doc still has Celtics fans' hearts in his mind. It honestly just feels wrong that The Truth has played in a different uniform other than ours, but if there's one last thing I'd love to see before he walks off into the sunset, it is for him to retire as a Celtic.
Image Credit: Kirby Lee/USA TODAY Sports
Follow Kevin Yazhari on Twitter @KevKevYazhari Kevin Yazhari 7/28/2016 05:25:00 PM Tweet Edit