Longtime college basketball coach Rick Majerus was remembered by many people Saturday night when news broke of the coach’s death.
But few were as somber as Celtics coach Doc Rivers, who actually became Doc Rivers the day he met Majerus.
“That’s a tough one for me,” Rivers said when addressing reporters before the Celtics’ loss to the Bucks in Milwaukee on Saturday.
Rivers and Majerus had a special connection that dated back to when Rivers first arrived at a Marquette summer camp years ago. Rivers, whose real first name is Glenn, arrived wearing a “Dr. J” T-shirt honoring Julius Erving. Majerus, who was known throughout his life for his camaraderie with players and his tendency to give memorable quotes, called the kid “Doc.”
“I mean, he’s the one who gave me my name,” Rivers said Saturday night as he fought back tears, according to ESPN.
Majerus died of heart failure after dealing with several health complications in recent months. He was 64.