According to The Athletic’s Jovan Buha, the Clippers viewed their first round series as having about the same weight as the Nuggets series while sacking Doc Rivers.
The Clippers took 6 games to finish off their first round opponents. This was despite the Mavs missing Kristaps Porzingis from Game 3 onwards and getting ejected in Game 1.
Even Luka Doncic was hobbled, playing on one good ankle during the last 3 games of the series. They still conceded a 43 point, 13 rebound, 17 assist game to the Slovenian First Team All-NBAer in a Game 4 loss to his buzzer-beater.
The Clippers front office viewed the Mavericks and Nuggets series as coaching failures
Doc Rivers gave far too many minutes to Montrezl Harrell against two deadly pick-and-roll combos in Doncic-Porzingis and Murray-Jokic.
Especially against Jokic, the big man was getting absolutely cooked in the post due to his smaller height and wingspan. The Lakers would have had a field day against such rotations even if the Clippers had made it to the Conference Finals.
According to the report by Jovan Buha of the Athletic, the Clippers going to 6 Games vs Mavericks, who had an unhealthy Kristaps Porzingis on the bench and a hobbling Luka Doncic on court, was a bigger factor in pointing out Doc River’ coaching flaws.
IYCMI: An inside look at the Clippers and Doc Rivers’ decision to part ways after another collapse
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— Jovan Buha (@jovanbuha) September 30, 2020
The decision not to play the taller JaMychal Green (who has 3-point range as well) or Ivica Zubac heavier minutes cost the Clippers.
They became a leaky team on the defensive end far too long for comfort. Barring Game 5 against the Mavs, they never really looked comfortable in defense.
Their offense was stagnant as well, with too many iso plays by Leonard, George and Williams. There was little communication with their rolling bigs, and the likes of Landry Shamet were played far too many consequential minutes.