The dam is open. The real story behind the turmoil in the Los Angeles Clippers locker room is starting to flow out in the open hours after Chris Paul agreed to opt in to the final year of his contract in order to get traded to the Houston Rockets.
NBC Sports and ESPN reported Wednesday there was real frustration in the Clippers locker room over how Austin Rivers, Doc Rivers’ son, was treated, including the three-year, $35 million contract he received.
ESPN’s Michael Eaves laid a pipe bomb out on Facebook hours after the Paul deal to the Rockets was reported. Eaves said Austin Rivers‘ sense of entitlement because his dad was the president of basketball operations really had an effect on the core of the Clippers’ franchise. Some felt Austin Rivers was not getting the same kind of treatment as other players received.
Paul also did not like that Doc Rivers did not pull the trade on a deal for Carmelo Anthony. Eaves said the Clippers received an offer from the Knicks for Anthony in exchange for Jamal Crawford, Paul Pierce and Austin Rivers and Doc Rivers said no.
Eaves said Paul lost his faith in Doc Rivers and one league executive told him that Paul “despises Doc.”
The Rivers’ situation is clearly not working out and if it did spill over into mini skirmishes in the locker room, shame on Doc Rivers for not addressing it or try to get control of the matter before it was too late.