‘Incredible’ call as Simmons gets new boss

Aussie NBA star Ben Simmons will have a new mentor next season after Philadelphia appointed Doc Rivers as the franchise’s new coach.

Rivers was fired by the LA Clippers after they lost to Denver in the Western Conference semi-finals but hasn’t taken long to snap up a new job, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski first reported.

The 76ers axed Brett Brown after they were swept in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs, bringing an end to a disappointing campaign that promised much but didn’t deliver.

Rivers emerged as a surprise candidate for the Sixers gig after being tossed out on Tuesday by the Clippers, who lost the chance to play the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals after surrendering a 3-1 series lead against the Nuggets.

Wojnarowski reports a “rapid negotiation and courtship” took place between Rivers and Philly bosses, who met on Thursday before agreeing to terms today.

Former Houston coach Mike D’Antoni was widely reported to be the frontrunner for the vacant 76ers job until Rivers suddenly became available, when the situation quickly changed.

The Ringer’s Kevin O’Connor tweeted: “Incredible how quickly this happened. Sixers ownership had the hots for Mike D’Antoni until Doc Rivers became available.”

More to come …

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