Assessing the Coaching Staff at Los Angeles Clippers for the 2020-21 NBA Season
The Doc Rivers era is in Hollywood has come to an end. If you don’t think canning Rivers and promoting his assistant is a clear sign that the Clips front office thought Doc was the problem, it’s time to wake up and smell the coffee.
With a new staff in place, LA has a clear goal in mind of chasing down their in-city rivals and hanging a “red and blue” banner in STAPLES Center.
Now’s a good time to familiarize yourself with the Los Angeles Clippers coaching staff.
Tyronn Lue – Clippers Head Coach
Talk about a man who’s well-traveled across the NBA, Lue played for seven different franchises during his 11-year career. His coaching journey began in 2011 as an assistant for Doc Rivers in Boston, and he’s stayed attached to Rivers’ hip all the way until the Cavs came calling in 2014.
Lue delivered a championship to Cleveland in his first season at the helm and brought the Cavaliers back to the Finals the next two years. He was ultimately fired after an 0-6 start in his fourth season, which set up the transition to come back to LA once again as an assistant under Doc.
Players in La La Land – Kawhi and PG13 included – seem eager and excited to have Ty leading the way heading into 2020-21. Lue might be a player’s coach who gets along with all of the guys, but he’s not someone who’s going to ever beat around the bush.
Ty Lue said he learned an important NBA lesson as a teammate of Brian Shaw: "Tell the truth, whether they like it or not."— Andrew Greif (@AndrewGreif) December 2, 2020
Ty tells it like it is and has earned a lot of respect for his approach.
Who Are the Los Angeles Clippers Assistant Coaches?
Tyronn Lue has carefully selected five new assistants to join him on the Los Angeles Clippers coaching staff. Two members from last year’s staff were retained.
Here’s a bit of insight into the group.
Dan Craig – Associate Head Coach
One of the departures from the Miami Heat coaching staff turns out to be one of the biggest gains for the Clips. Dan Craig assumes the role of the Clippers associate head coach after 17 years in South Beach. The G League Coach of the Year in 2016 brings a wealth of experience to the table thanks to soaking up lots of knowledge from Erik Spoelstra and Pat Riley.
One of the hottest names who I thought was certain to get a head coaching gig in the offseason instead lands in LA. Atkinson brings with him two key pieces from his team in Brooklyn – Shaun Fein and Beau. Both will assist in the player development aspect, while Atkinson serves as Ty’s lead assistant.
The five-time All-Star and NBA champion was bound to start coaching at some point. The ESPN analyst (and former Clippers game analyst) was finally lured by the opportunity to immediately be immersed into a championship-caliber squad. Expect Billups to rise up the ranks quickly and get a shot at being a head coach within the next few seasons.
Having coached 388 games for three different organizations, Larry Drew was an assistant coach on Ty Lue’s staff in 2016 when Cleveland won the title. Due to the deep bond formed between Lue and Drew, it’s no surprise that Larry found a seat on the Clippers coaching staff.
Roy Rogers Jr.
The 6’10” power forward was the 22nd overall pick by the Vancouver Grizzlies in 1996. Now in his eighth stop as an NBA assistant coach, Roy Rogers Jr. spent last season in Chicago after four years with Mike D’Antoni in Houston.
A strong relationship with Kawhi Leonard was the catalyst behind the Clippers Coaching staff hiring Jeremy Castleberry in 2019. Castleberry played with Leonard in high school and college before being hired in San Antonio and then Toronto. Wherever Leonard goes, Castleberry follows closely behind.
One of the main proponents behind the Detroit Pistons playing such good defense in the early-to-mid 2000s. After coaching Chauncey Billups in Motor City, Brendan O’Connor was an advanced scout for the Nets for one year. The Clippers employed O’Conner in 2013, and he’s been a steady element ever since.
Final Analysis of the LA Clippers Coaching Staff
Steve Ballmer and Lawrence Frank are confident that Ty Lue is the man who can lead the Clips to the Promised Land. Los Angeles undoubtedly has a gifted roster – and now they have a top-tier coaching staff to go along.
For blogs similar to this one highlighting the Clippers coaching staff, check out the links below.