Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 6/24/13
Doc Rivers is a Clipper. Ultimately, it probably had to happen — maybe not in the way it did, but sometime around the third round of negotiations, the teams passed the point where the coach could just waltz back into TD Garden and coach the Celtics next season as though nothing had happened. So as Rivers heads west, agonizing over the parameters of the transaction is largely useless. The deal was neither good nor bad for the Celtics or Clippers. It was merely necessary. It was necessary for the Clippers because Chris Paul made it so, with the free agent point guard dictating the terms of his re-signing with the long-troubled franchise. Without Rivers, there is no Paul, and without Paul it is right back to the dark ages for the least-decorated organization in major pro sports. It was necessary for the Celtics because they want to rebuild, and their top-five head coach was their most attractive asset — and getting rid of him was the quickest way to convince Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett that they would be better off elsewhere. From the Celtics’ perspective, trading an elite coach for an unprotected pick in the 2015 draft that will be somewhere around the mid-20s may seem like a low return. For the Clippers, giving up anything for any coach, when they could simply hire Lionel Hollins or Brian Shaw without surrendering anything, apparently seemed unreasonable. But a week’s worth of reports about both sides hanging up the phone and abruptly leaving discussions is disgust were clearly little more than posturing. The Celtics and Clippers were determined to get a deal done, for their sakes. In offering rationalizations for the move, both sides will try to sell the public on minutia to suggest they got what they wanted. The Celtics are already quietly trumpeting the “unprotected” nature of the pick, meaning they will get it whether or not the Clips fall off a cliff in two years and are back in the draft lottery, but any protection likely will be extraneous if Rivers pans out the way Los Angeles hopes. The Clippers will insist Paul had input yet did not push a deal, lest they create the impression that the inmates run the asylum, but by now the world knows the truth. To borrow a phrase from NBA commissioner David Stern, if you believe any of the teams’ versions of this story, I’ve got a bridge that connects to Brooklyn that I would love to sell you. Again, however, even though the Clippers reportedly restarted the talks by finally offering the first-round pick the Celtics demanded, this situation had no “winner” or “loser.” In the end, everyone can say they won because they pulled off the deal they needed to make, but that is all. By accomplishing something they had to do, rather than something they wanted to do, neither side truly can call itself the winner. Have a question for Ben Watanabe? Send it to him via Twitter at @BenjeeBallgame or send it here. Related articles Report: NBA Will Approve Doc Rivers Deal, but Not Future Trade Between Celtics, Clippers for Kevin Garnett (nesn.com) Report: Doc Rivers To Coach Clippers, Celtics Receive 2015 First-Round Draft Pick in Return (nesn.com) Antoine Walker Says He Wants to Coach Celtics After Doc Rivers, Clippers Appear to Reach Deal (nesn.com)
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: NFL executive questions hype around Sam Bradford

Raiders coaching staff excited about running backs

Braves reportedly aren’t keen on trading Cameron Maybin

Report: Jason Pierre-Paul has burns, possible nerve damage

Rory McIlroy suffered injury in soccer game with friends

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jason Kidd to be named general manager of Bucks

USWNT romps Japan 5-2 to win third Women's World Cup title

Report: JPP 'severely injured' hand in fireworks mishap

Blatter: European politicians helped Qatar land World Cup

Report: Cavs considering trading for Joe Johnson

Andrew Quarless found hiding in plant after firing gun

Jameis Winston visits Miami teen in hospital with condition

2015 MLB first-half all-surprise team

World Cup Final smashes ratings records

Tsunami survivor fulfills dream by signing with Sporting Lisbon

Andre Johnson reconnects with Chuck Pagano by joining Colts

Lou Williams bolsters Lakers backcourt, but trouble remains

MLB teams who will continue to disappoint in the second half

2015 All-Star starters announced, featuring four Royals

WATCH: Jake Marisnick makes fantastic running catch

WATCH: Carlos Gomez leaves gum, note for Billy Hamilton

Kansas to wear new USA jerseys after request from FIBA

What can the Saints expect from CJ Spiller in 2015?

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

2015 All-Star starters announced

JPP injured in fireworks mishap?

Odell Beckham doesn't want to be known for 'the catch'

Russell Wilson 'would definitely consider' playing for Mariners

Solo, Rapinoe among USWNT stars up for World Cup awards

LBS on Sports Jeopardy! Here's how how it went

College football's 35 most patriotic helmets

A brief history of non-star All-Stars

With Love retained, the Cavs can take care of LeBron

Grading the deal: Davis commits to Pelicans

Obama Administration: Change name if Redskins move to D.C.

Deciding what the All-Star Game means

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.