Alvin Gentry laughs off ex-boss Doc Rivers' criticism of Warriors' championship


METAIRIE, La. — When Clippers coach Doc Rivers suggested to Grantland’s Zach Lowe that the Warriors were an example of needing luck to survive the Western Conference, he re-ignited a long-standing rivalry between L.A. and Golden State.

Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry has watched that play out from a distance, and he has a foot in both camps. He was an assistant with Rivers and the Clippers two years ago and was an assistant with Steve Kerr and the champion Warriors last year.

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There’s no doubt which camp he is favoring on this issue, though: the Warriors.

“Contrary to what anybody says or thinks, we did win a championship last year, and we will be getting a championship ring,” Gentry told Sporting News. “For anybody that says we didn’t beat anybody to get there, last time I checked, we played all NBA teams to get there.”

It’s preseason, of course, so a little trash-talk among top teams is a welcome storyline. Rivers, it should be noted, later tried to clarify his comments. Still, it’s been frequently pointed out that the Warriors did play the Pelicans, Grizzlies, Rockets and Cavaliers, all of whom were dealing with significant injuries during their series, particularly to the starting point guards.

But Gentry just laughs at the notion that Golden State’s championship is diminished because of that.

“I’m just saying that we’re going to get rings next Thursday night no matter what anybody else thinks,” Gentry said. “To me, when they write the book on NBA history, and they get to 2015, it’s going to have the Golden State Warriors and there is not going to be one thing on there, an asterisk or anything else.”

As for those doubting the accomplishment, Gentry said, “It’s not what anybody else thinks, it’s the opinion we have of ou

rselves. They’re entitled to think anything they want, but at the end of the day, we’re still going to be NBA champs 20, 50 or 100 years from now.”