What’s Brewing: Better yet, what’s not brewing? That would be Doc Rivers’ announcement that he’s returning to coach the Boston Celtics for the 2013-14 NBA season. Rivers has gone radio silent, skirting the issue of whether he’ll be on the sideline next season, while Danny Ainge continues to insist that he expects Rivers on the bench. So, what gives? Is Rivers coming back or walking away?
Inside Scoop: Everyone claims to have an inside source on this one, but trust me, that isn’t the case. Except right here. Celtics Insider does have a conduit into the Celtics’ inner sanctum, and even then the information has been almost impossible to come by. All we know from the inside is this: Danny Ainge, according to the source, continues to put the right spin on the situation, while everything else points to Rivers walking away – either to take some time off and recharge, or to move into a ready-made championship situation with a team like the Los Angeles Clippers. That’s all we know right now, which is all anyone knows. But Celtics Insider was able to dig into the reasons why Rivers may be leaning toward not coming back. There are plenty, including a desire to coach a playoff-caliber team and not rebuild. But the heart of the matter may go a little deeper still. Seems that there is a potential rift between Ainge and Rivers in terms of how Ainge has handled some of his player dealings. Think the handling of Ray Allen and you begin to get the idea. And our inside voice points to Rajon Rondo as the biggest reason Rivers might walk. Apparently Allen isn’t the only one who has soured on the complicated behavior exhibited by Rondo. Rajon Rondo is an acquired taste, no question about it. Headstrong. Fiercely independent. A loner. Aloof. I could go on, but you get the point. And then there is the feeling that Ainge talks out both sides of his mouth, and that this has hurt his ability to lure potential free agents into Boston. Whatever the reason, our insider doesn’t expect Rivers back on the Celtics bench next season.
Insider’s Take: Celtics Insider agrees with its inside source. If Rivers were coming back he would have said he’d be back by now. There are reports that Ainge is looking at contingency plans, such asVinnie Del Negro, formerly of the Clips. Sounds an awfully lot like the Ray Allen situation last season, and we know how his replacement – Jason Terry – worked out. Sadly, our bet is that Rivers has coached his last game for the Boston Celtics.