For days, the room has been set up for a news conference.
There’s a green backdrop, microphones, chairs, and a table draped in green cloth with “@celtics,” the team’s Twitter handle, facing outward.
Doc Rivers would sit there, and Danny Ainge at his side. And they would shed light on Rivers’s likely departure from the Celtics to coach the Clippers after weeks of public silence, as wild speculation accumulated like snow in a blizzard.
That was and has been the plan
But that didn’t happen Monday. The room remained empty, once again, because the deal that would send Rivers to Los Angeles still hasn’t been finalized.
A league source confirmed that Rivers and the Clippers are still working out the details in his new contract, which league sources have said would be for three years and $21 million.
A league source did say the Clippers are confident that the holdup is minor and that soon the whole proposal could be sent to the league office for approval.
It’s expected the league will approve the deal, too.
One reason the deal may not be completed is that, according to multiple reports, Rivers not only will become the coach of the Clippers, but he’ll take control of at least some of the basketball operations without holding dual titles. San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich has a role similar to that.
In return for Rivers, the Clippers would send the Celtics an unprotected 2015 first-round draft pick. Celtics center Kevin Garnett was involved in previous proposed deals between the teams, but he isn’t involved in this one.
The NBA is expected to block any subsequent player transactions between the teams because they would appear to be side deals to the original deal, and thus against league rules regarding transactions.
Once the deal is official, both teams can make their announcements and hold their respective farewell/introduction news conferences, which for the Celtics might happen Tuesday.
League sources repeatedly said Brian Shaw was a potential leading candidate to replace Rivers if and when he finally does ship out to LA to coach the Clippers.
Shaw, who was selected by the Celtics in the first round of the 1988 draft, was interested in coaching the Celtics, too, his agent confirmed to the Globe.
“[He] would enjoy working for the team that he started his career with,” said Shaw’s agent, Jerome Stanley, adding that they hadn’t been contacted by the Celtics.
But you can take Shaw’s name off the list of candidates.
The longtime assistant coach has accepted the head coaching job in Denver, the Denver Post reported Monday.
Shaw, 47, who was the associate head coach for the Indiana Pacers, was also a candidate for the Clippers’ head coaching position – he interviewed multiple times – before they appeared to have agreed to terms Sunday with Rivers.Baxter Holmes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @BaxterHolmes