Doc-to-Clippers talk dead (again)
The Doc-udrama has taken a new, and possibly fatal, turn.
A league source told the Herald on Friday that negotiations between the Celtics and Clippers over the release of Doc Rivers from his contract have ended.
Though there is a slim chance that talks could resume for a third time, both sides appeared to acknowledge that nothing can be gained.
“The Celtics’ price (for Rivers) was a first-round pick, and the Clippers weren’t willing to do that,” said the source, who added that it remained unclear if the Celtics could have even scored a second-round pick for their coach of the last nine years.
Though the Celtics’ cancellation of a press conference Friday was believed to be a reaction to an improved offer from the Clippers, the source said the offer was never sweetened.
The source, who said earlier in the week that terms were never close between both sides, had not improved Friday.
“The deal is dead,” he said. “There’s never been a deal, really, and there still isn’t. Things have changed at times in (negotiations), but I don’t see how that is going to happen now.”
The press conference was cancelled not because of negotiations, but because Rivers needed additional time to ponder his future, which now appears to consist either of a return to the Celtics next season or a decision to walk away for a year or two.
The Celtics, who would hold his rights for the next three years, are determined to receive compensation from any team that wants to sign Rivers.
Ainge and Rivers now plan to address the media Monday.