Former Indiana Pacers star Reggie Miller offered a brutally honest take on Paul George and the Los Angeles Clippers this past week.
Specifically, Miller didn’t like how George and Co. threw former head coach, Doc Rivers, under the bus for last year’s woes.
“I think it was a little unfair for the blame to be put on Doc Rivers for that collapse,” Miller told Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated.
“I thought it was unfair for Paul George to come out and talk about not making in-game adjustments, solely putting it on Doc Rivers. I thought it was a little bit selfish for none of the other Clipper teammates to come out and say, ‘No, that wasn’t the case. We messed up.’ When Paul George said that, some other Clippers should have come out and said, ‘It was all of us.’”
A few weeks back, George appeared on the ‘All The Smoke’ podcast with Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson. During the interview, he laid blame for the Clippers’ playoff failures in 2020 squarely at the doorstep of Rivers.
“During that whole process, we never worked on adjustments,” he said.
“We never worked on what to do differently. We just literally had the same sh*t happen over and over again.
“It started to play a trick on you like, ‘Man, like what’s going on? We talking amongst each other, the conversation is like, ‘We gonna be alright. The conversation should’ve been like, ‘Nah, we need to change .. we need to switch this up.’
“At the end of the day, I don’t think we deserved it. We wasn’t prepared enough going into it.”
Bronny pulls up from beyond the arc. https://t.co/cusTr4DlQP
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 25, 2020
George specifically also didn’t like how he was utilized.
“The way I was being used, I felt Doc was trying to play me as like a Ray Allen or like a JJ Redick, all pin-downs. I can do it, but that ain’t my game,” he said.
“I need some flow, I need some mixes of pick-and-rolls, I need some post-ups, just different touches, you know what I mean? That last season was just hard overall.”
Rivers, for his part, took the criticism in stride.
Gordon Hayward kept it real with LaMelo after that embarrassing debut. https://t.co/uq2eQOO08s
— Game 7 (@game7__) December 24, 2020
“Hey, listen, I enjoyed coaching him,” he said of George.
“So not a lot to say there. Ty Lue was sitting right next to me. So he better hope it’s not adjustments. It ain’t going to be much different.
“Listen, we lost the game, and I think everybody needs to take ownership. [Me] obviously. We can always do better. Players can play better. So as far as I’m concerned, I’ll leave it there.”
Will George fare better without Rivers holding him back this coming year? Time will tell – but he better hope so. If he doesn’t, then he won’t be able to blame his former head coach for his shortcomings for much longer.