Sunday, June 15, 2008

What a father passes on to his son

If you didn't catch the article last week in the Boston Globe about Doc Rivers and the influence his late father, Grady Rivers, a former police officer, has had on his coaching style, please check it out when you have a chance. It provides some terrific insight into the profound impact a father can have on his son.

Said Rivers:

"Most of what my dad taught me is what got me through last year. I couldn't have done it otherwise."

The article also tells of how Mike Fratello, for whom Doc played for with the Hawks in the '80s, was one of the few people to call Coach Rivers last season when the Celtics were really struggling just "to offer brief words of encouragement."

It's interesting to look back at what critics said about Coach Rivers last season when the Celtics went 24-58 and lost 18 in a row at one point. As the article describes it:

"The criticisms varied. Doc didn't know defense. He was too much of a player's coach. He couldn't develop young talent. He was too congenial. He was too much of a "feel" coach, and not enough of an X's-and-O's guy."

A year later, Doc and the Celtics are a game away from an NBA title. His father would be proud.