Video: Doc Rivers Defends Utah Jazz, Mediates Media Debate


Jan 28, 2015; Salt Lake City, UT, USA; Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers reacts during the second half against the Utah Jazz at EnergySolutions Arena. The Clippers won 94-89. Mandatory Credit: Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

Things got a bit chippy in the postgame press conference after the Los Angeles Clippers beat the Denver Nuggets in the STAPLES Center on Monday night, leading to Clips’ coach Doc Rivers randomly defending the Utah Jazz, Quin Snyder and playing roundtable mediator.

Doc Rivers…just taking it in stride like talking Utah Jazz at a Clippers-Nuggets postgame presser is the most usual thing in the world

With much of the Western Conference playoff seeding very much in flux heading down to the wire, teams like the Utah Jazz — while out of the playoffs themselves — will still have a hand in determining who plays who in round one of the 2015 NBA Playoffs.

L.A Times beat writer Brad Turner had been in a lively discussion with at least one less traditional media member, Andrew Han of ESPN’s TrueHoop Network Clipperblog, as Doc sat down to answer questions he surely thought pertained to the Nuggets, that night and his team.

Rather, an impromptu basketball roundtable discussion centered around the Jazz broke out with Rivers playing the role of mediator.

"Andrew Han: “We’ve been discussing how good Utah is because they play Houston tomorrow.”Doc: “Utah’s honestly — since we’re just gonna talk basketball, we’ll have a basketball roundtable right now — Utah since the All-Star break has been unreal.”Han: “Thank you!”*media laughs*Doc: “Yes, they’ve been fantastic.”Brad Turner: “How many games you play in the regular season?”Doc: “You play 82.”Turner: “Okay then, so what does that matter?”Han: “Would you call Utah ‘really good’ right now?”Doc: “They’re playing very well. Since the All-Star break, I think, they have like one of the third or fourth-best record.”Turner: “But you gotta play all 82 games, right?”Doc: “Yeah. They’re young and they’ve grown. Quin Snyder’s done a great job.”Turner: “That’s what I’m sayin’ to these young guys over here.”"

Here’s the hilarious video. Scroll to the right by clicking the arrow a couple-three times to find Doc Rivers. His mannerism makes the whole conversation, just taking it in stride like talking Utah Jazz at a Clippers-Nuggets postgame presser is the most usual thing in the world.

What Turner’s blatantly ignoring with the “82 games” argument is that while Utah might be out of the playoff picture themselves, they’re capable of beating the Houston Rockets when playing as well as they have since the All-Star break, and can still determine in part who the Clippers play.

While I don’t know Turner, it would be a safe bet that he’s the type that’s awed by a night when Kobe Bryant takes 43 shots to get 40 points in a Los Angeles Lakers loss. But, RINGZZZZZ!!1!1!!

The Clippers could still land the 2-seed spot in the wild West if the San Antonio Spurs lose in a must-win-and-in game for the Pelicans in New Orleans AND the Jazz beat the Rockets in Houston.

Doc Rivers always has high praise for the Utah organization, admitting to “a man-crush on Gordon Hayward.”

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