One of the many questions coming into the 2010-'11 NBA season was how much longer do the Boston Celtics have with their "Big 3?" Another question is what holds for the future with Head Coach Doc Rivers, who signed a one-year contract last June?
Kevin Garnett (34 years old), Paul Pierce (33), and Ray Allen (35) are seeing the window closing on their illustrious careers. There was speculation that last off-season the Celtics would break up their team with Rivers leaving to spend time with his family and Allen's contract expiring. Pierce could opt out of his deal and become a free agent.
They all came back for at least another year (a potential NBA lockout is threatening the 2011-'12 season). Allen and Garnett's contracts end after the 2011-'12 season.
River's family has lived in Florida while he has coached the Celtics for seven years. His family is the most important part of his life, which is why he took trips throughout the year to catch his son, Jeremiah, play his senior season for the Indiana University Basketball team and daughter, Callie, compete on the University of Florida's Volleyball team. Rivers' other son, Austin, who is one of the most highly touted high school basketball prospects, committed to Duke and will be seen on ESPN playing for Mike Krzyzewski in November.
While Miami and possibly Orlando are closer to River's home, he has a situation in Boston that any other coach (other than Phil Jackson) in basketball would trade with him. Rivers also played for current Miami Heat President Pat Riley in New York from 1993-1995.
He could stay to develop the young players in the rebuilding process after Allen, Garnett and Pierce move on. If he leaves, he could sit a year and return to commentating. He did gain experience after being fired by the Orlando Magic on November 18, 2003; he became a commentator on TNT.
Rivers is in good hands with an owner like Wyc Grousbeck, who is willing to spend money to win, and a President of Player Personnel in Danny Ainge who has a wonderful relationship with Rivers. In an interview before the 2010-'11 season commenced, Rivers said he would keep his position as Head Coach of the Boston Celtics as long as Garnett is around. Rivers has stated that Garnett is the easiest player to coach because he is one of the most unselfish competitors he has ever been around.
The one complicated scenario is if the NBA moves to a hard salary cap with this new collective bargaining agreement, and how organizations like the Celtics would handle this after being above the cap for the past four seasons.
The ball is in Doc's court come June and whatever decision he makes, there is no doubt it will be in the best interest of his family.
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