Los Angeles

LA Clippers Head Coach Doc Rivers Vows to Change Culture Regarding Technical Fouls, Implements New Team Policy

Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers addressed the team's technical foul troubles on Wednesday night and implemented a new team policy to change the culture of the NBA's most complaining team.

New year, new culture in the Los Angeles Clippers locker room. 

The Clippers are currently third in the NBA with 32 technical fouls this season and are consistently among the leaders in the league when it comes to techs, year after year.

The teams' players are among the league leaders in technical fouls as DeAndre Jordan and Austin Rivers are fifth and sixth in the NBA with 8 and 7 respectively.

In fact, that number could be a lot higher if Blake Griffin and Chris Paul hadn't gotten hurt, perennial leaders in technical fouls year after year.

The lack of discipline all starts at the top as their head coach, Doc Rivers, has been ejected three times already this season, and has more technical fouls than any player on the team.

On Wednesday, before the team's game against the Memphis Grizzlies, Rivers finally put his foot down and announced a new team policy with the hopes of limiting technical fouls.

"I had a long talk with the team today," Rivers began. "I told them after a day and a half off and watching literally every tech that the team has gotten this year, including me, I told them that that doesn't represent us and I made a pledge to them.

"Number one, I've been thrown out of three games this year. I told them that is not me and that is not going to happen again and that I have to be the leader of this team. My actions have to go first.

"One of my things that I start his year, was that I told them that I would do the fighting and they would do the playing, and after wathcing that, that doesn't work because they are still doing the fighting and I'm going the fighting.

"So, we are reversing it now. Now, I am holding everyone accountable, including me, if anyone gets a technical foul."

Rivers announced that he's partnering with the Violence Intervention Program (VIP) in the Los Angeles area as a new way to encourage the team to stop complaining to the refs.

"I told them from now on, every technical foul that I get, that's where my money will go, and it's retroactive. So, all of the money that I have been fined is going to them now and any technical foul after that is going to them. Any technical foul the players get, I want them to find their group and give it to an organization."

The message seemed to resonate with his team as the Clippers did not pick up a technical foul in the game, a 115-106, victory over the Grizzlies, as the team improved to 2-0 in 2017.

"It's extremely tough," Clippers' center DeAndre Jordan said about holding back his emotions during the heat of the moment in the game. "We have to do a better job. From myself, to Chris [Paul], to Blake [Griffin], Doc [Rivers], all of us. We have to let stuff go and just play."

"I didn't get no techs before I came here," interjected Austin Rivers. "I didn't even know I had that many techs. For the rest of the year, I'm not going to get anymore. We cleared that up. I'm done."

The VIP's mission is to protect and treat all victims of family violence and sexual assault. They offer care and service to both children and adults who have been physically or sexually abused and focus mainly on the mental health aspect of recovery.

"We are better than that," finished Doc. "We have to do a better job."

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