Clippers bring Doc Rivers, other new faces together for first time

Clippers united
New Coach Doc Rivers stands front and center with Clippers players who have been either re-signed or acquired during the off-season: Matt Barnes, from left, Darren Collison, Jared Dudley, Ryan Hollins, Chris Paul and J.J. Redick.
(Reed Saxon / Associated Press)

The Clippers loaded up the news conference stage Wednesday afternoon, showcasing new head coach and senior vice president Doc Rivers -- flanked by a pair of front-office executives -- and all six of the players who have either been brought in from elsewhere or re-signed with the team this summer.

That crowded stage? All part of the plan.

“I thought it was important that we did this together,” Rivers said. “We have to try to learn how to win together. This is not boxing, this is basketball.”

Chris Paul, Matt Barnes, and Ryan Hollins -- the re-signed -- took up three chairs. Darren Collison, Jared Dudley and J.J. Redick -- the acquired -- occupied the other three. Chemistry appears to be a key point of emphasis heading into a season that will feature so many fresh faces.


“Being able to gel before playing together is so huge,” said Barnes, who re-upped with the Clippers for three years last week and said he and Paul were talking about leading a retreat for the players before the season begins to hopefully do just that.

The players sang the praises of Rivers, who carries a reputation around the league for being outstanding in the areas of motivation and chemistry.

“Doc’s thing is about winning, about putting the team first,” Redick said. “That’s what I’m all about.”



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ryan.eshoff@latimes.comTwitter: @RyanEshoff

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