Kind of hidden in all of the media frenzy over the Telfair robbery and subsequent Fabolous shooting is the fact that Doc wasn't honest with the players or the press. It hasn't set well with ownership, press, or fans.
I am not the biggest Doc fan and most of that stems from his inability to coach defense or use his bigs to their strengths. I am a big fan of defense and love my bigs to play under the basket and own the paint. Doc coaches offense and expects the players to learn defense by playing it while practicing offensive sets. He also likes bigs who wander on the arc looking for an outside shot. I didn't think much of it at the time, but Doc's deceit that night was a big blunder. Things have settled down and Telfair's lawyer is saying that the investigation is over as far as Telfair is concerned, but there is still talk about how Doc handled the matter.
With a camera beaming his words back to the living rooms of New England, Rivers looked one of his beat writers in the eye and perpetuated the untruth, going so far as to say he had joked with Telfair that he must have gotten sick from dominating his cousin, Marbury, in the first quarter of the game.
The lie was exposed the following day, and owner Wyc Grousbeck was livid over the way the matter was handled, saying the team should communicate in two ways: By telling the truth or not commenting.
Wyc went on WEEI the next morning and voiced his displeasure with the way Doc handled the situation. For Wyc to take time to call in and voice his opinion on the matter on the air, he must have been quite unhappy with the way it was handled. As noted the above, he felt that Doc should have told the truth or made no comment until the facts were known.
The message boards are also speculating that Doc's failure to handle the Telfair incident properly will lead to his demise. From CelticsBlog from a poster who has proven to have inside information in previous situations.
Word going around is that Wyc was furious that Doc lied to the press after Bassy was pulled from the Knicks game and that the Celtics are already thinking about replacing Doc with Rick Adelman, Stan Van Gundy, and possibly Jim Obrien.
The Celtics would have preferred Doc no commented Bassy's departure then appearing like liars to the press.
And then from RealGM from another respected poster:
I'm beginning to think that the "Telfair Incident", when Doc's first instinct was to lie, will be the excuse Wyc needs to replace Rivers.
For an owner trying to establish a nice, clean image for his team, this transgression by his coach must have been unforgivable. Certainly in the cases of Tony Allen and Telfair we're obliged to believe that they are victims until proven otherwise. Doc doesn't have that luxury, he's guilty, with millions of witnesses. His image is permanently tainted with fans and more importantly the Boston media. To Wyc this is deadly serious.
I know that it was a difficult situation, with the information sprung on Doc at the last minute, but you have to wonder when someeone's first reaction to a difficult situation is to lie about it. This may all be speculation, but Wyc was definitely upset about it and said so in the radio interview which leads me to believe that Doc's seat is hotter than ever.
Hmmm.... not sure what to think really. Doc has actually been on the hot seat with the owners for some time now. Remember that Ainge had to put his butt on the line for Doc already (saying to the effect, "if Doc goes, I go).
I don't know if its in our best interest to get rid of Doc and go with a new coach a week before the season starts. The players will be taken back, as it seems they all have a good relationship with him, and it'll take some time to adjust to a new coach and his philosophy on basketball.
Rick Adelman, Stan Van Gundy and Jim O'Brien? I don't think OBie is even considerable, being that he cares nothing about offense (and Ainge loves offense). Adelman has found success coaching at Portland and then recently with Sacramento. And Van Gundy took a so so Miami team (before they acquired Shaq) and took them to the playoffs.
I'm willing to give Doc some time to get it right, but Ainge better be looking for replacements soon because if the owners want him out this time, they may get their wish.
I agree that it wouldn't be the best time to fire a coach right now. But remember that he was fired 11 games into the season in Orlando when they started off 0-11.
If we get off to a good start, the furor will die down and Doc will stay for now.
But if we start off with more losses than wins, I expect a coaching change. That is just my thoughts, but Wyc was really upset when he called into WEEI and that could mean a shorter leash on Doc this season.
If we start 0-11, Doc is certainly gone. It'll be just the ticket the owners need to get Doc out of here. The question then becomes, who will be our head coach. I don't want Ainge to do it because he's a terrific GM (or Head of Operations). I want him to focus entirely on drafts and potential trades to improve the team.