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Doc Rivers fired; Top 5 candidates for next 76ers head coach

Doc Rivers fired; Top 5 candidates for next 76ers head coach
May 3, 2023; Boston, Massachusetts, USA; Philadelphia 76ers head coach Doc Rivers watches from the sideline as they take on the Boston Celtics during game two of the 2023 NBA playoffs at TD Garden. (Photo: David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports)

PHILADELPHIA – Doc Rivers was dismissed as head coach of the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday after a 154-82 (.653) record across three seasons.

The Sixers were eliminated in the Eastern Conference semifinals for the third consecutive season, losing in a Game 7 to the Boston Celtics this time around. Rivers led Philadelphia to its most wins (54) in franchise history since 2000-01 this season as the 76ers were one of just three teams in the top 10 of both offensive and defensive efficiency.

Sixers star Joel Embiid captured his first MVP while James Harden led the NBA in assists (10.7) but Rivers – who just wrapped up his 16th straight winning season as a head coach – lost his 10th Game 7, which includes five losses in a row. Sunday’s Game 7 loss to the Celtics was also the ninth consecutive time that Rivers lost with a chance to reach the conference finals, something the 76ers haven’t done since 2000-01.

With Rivers fired, Philadelphia not only has to find a replacement, but navigate the impending free agency of Harden who has a player option for next season worth $35.6 million.

Luckily for the Sixers, their search for a new head coach will include a handful of impressive candidates. With that in mind, here are the top five candidates to replace Rivers as the next 76ers head coach.