Doc Rivers Dishes On What Really Happened During The DeAndre Jordan Free Agency Saga
July 17 / Jake O'Donnell / SportsGrid
Earlier this month, Doc Rivers got a call from DeAndre Jordan's agent, Dan Fegan, who notified the Clippers' coach that the unrestricted free agent center would not be coming back. A week later, DeAndre Jordan picked up the phone and called Rivers to let him know he was having second thoughts about playing for the Dallas Mavericks -- a team he had verbally agreed to sign with.
"He had never been recruited in his life and all that stuff sounds great," Rivers said about the Mavericks' pitch to Jordan. "The smoke and the mirrors and what they're gonna do and how they're gonna play you and all that stuff, and when he looked at our team he started thinking, 'Man, I'm in a great place -- why would I ever give that up?'"
Rivers said he felt confident DeAndre Jordan would re-sign with the Clippers after voicing his reluctance to make the move to Dallas. Sure enough, he got a call that D.J. formally wanted to have a team pow-wow at his home in Houston to hash out the issues that motivated his wanderlust in the first place. So Rivers, Paul Pierce and Blake Griffin hopped on Steve Ballmer's private jet -- which had just arrived in Los Angeles as luck would have it -- and headed down to Texas to meet up with the rest of the team for a therapy session with the conflicted big man.
Chris Paul even cut his Caribbean banana boating excursion short. How sweet?
"J.J. Reddick drives up from Austin -- J.J. lives in Austin, Texas -- so everyone met up, we met at a hotel and drove over, so it was easy."
Rivers also noted that it isn't especially weird that DeAndre Jordan didn't call Mark Cuban while he was in the throes of his infamous change of heart.
"That's the only thing that I kinda scratch my head at later after the whole thing was over when you heard Mark [Cuban] complaining that he was upset that D.J. didn't call him," Rivers said. "I think you've been in this business long enough to know that usually doesn't happen."
"I was with D.J. for two years and he didn't call me."
You think that makes Mark Cuban feel a lot better about how this whole thing played out? Ya, us neither.
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