Al Michaels tells story of how Doc Rivers was almost Lakers coach in 2004-05

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Any story that includes a chance meeting and conversation with Jerry Buss outside a men’s restroom is going to be golden.

Al Michaels had one of those in the spring on 2004 and retold the story on the Dan Patrick show Friday. And it’s gold Jerry. Gold. Remember that during the 2004 playoffs Doc Rivers agreed to go coach the Boston Celtics, but he stayed on as an ABC analyst through the playoffs. Then during the Lakers/Spurs series that year, while Phil Jackson was doing his annual waffling on whether he’d return, Jerry Buss told Michaels that if Rivers hadn’t signed in Boston he would have signed him. So Michaels told Rivers and…

It’s fun to speculate, but that was a tough few years for the Lakers after Shaquille O’Neal, Gary Payton and Karl Malone all left (remember the Rudy Tomjanovich era?) and who knows how things turn out. As it was, Doc eventually got his ring in Boston and is now a head coach of a loaded team in Los Angeles. Things tend to work out.