LA Clippers backup guard Austin Rivers feeds off your hate. It drives him, he says, and it wouldn’t feel right if opposing fans weren’t constantly showering him with cat-calls and putdowns.
The former Dukie, long used to fan hostility, has been a surprising contributor during the postseason.
He’s forcing haters to come up with more creative insults—ones that don’t have anything to do with him being Doc Rivers’ son.
Per The Daily Breeze:
“It would be weird,” Rivers said, “if people weren’t cheering against you. It would be boring. You want them to say crazy, bad things. That’s the way it’s always been, but it’s not personal. On the street, they always say, ‘Hey, man, I was just messing with you.’”
Rivers messed with San Antonio in Game 4 of the Clippers’ first-round series. He burst for 16 points in 17 minutes, and L.A. tied a series 2-2 that it would win 4-3. […] Then Rivers went Vesuvian in Game 3 against Houston. He basically went one-against-the-world in a 15-point third quarter, and wound up with 25 points in 23 minutes, and suddenly Chris Paul didn’t have to push his hamstring into the red zone.
Austin was such a celebrity in high school that a mixtape producer named Ryan Curry followed him around his senior season. But he resented the easy conclusion that he was riding his dad’s coattails. […] “I was always Little Doc,” said Austin, who is named after Austin Carr, the Notre Dame and NBA star. “And in the sixth grade I was the worst player on the team. People said I was only on the team because of my name. That (ticked) me off, lit a fire under me. I’d sneak out and work on my game at midnight. The neighbors would call and say, turn the lights off. I went from the worst player to the first guy off the bench to the best player on my ninth-grade team, and then it took off. But after a while I said, ‘You know what? I’m proud of what my dad did.’ That’s what I tell (the youngest brother) Spencer. Accept it, be proud, do something so your kids will be proud of you.”