Austin Rivers
Austin Rivers
27-Year-Old GuardG
Houston Rockets
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Rivers was traded to Houston from Washington last season and played 47 games for the Rockets. Between the two teams, he averaged 8.7 points, 2.3 assists and 1.9 rebounds in 26.1 minutes per contest. He upped those numbers to 11.5 points, 4.0 assists and 3.0 rebounds in 15 starts. Rivers is occasionally good for a big scoring effort, but his production in other categories leaves much to be desired. He's a streaky shooter and not a particularly adept defender, limiting his overall fantasy value to deep leagues. He becomes even less valuable when considering the ultra-talented backcourt options available to the Rockets in James Harden, Russell Westbrook and Eric Gordon. Barring injury to those ahead of him on the depth chart, Rivers isn't worth a look in standard leagues. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year contract with the Rockets in July of 2019. Contract includes player option for 2020-21.
Personal Bio

Austin Rivers was born in Santa Monica, California, to Doc and Kristen Rivers. His father was an NBA basketball player and has coached multiple NBA teams, including the Celtics and the Clippers. He has two brothers, Jeremiah and Spencer, both of whom played college basketball. He also has a sister, Callie, who played volleyball for the University of Florida and is married to Rivers' former Duke teammate and current NBA player, Seth Curry. Austin attended Winter Park High School in Winter Park, Florida. In 2010, he led his team to its first state title as a junior. Winter Park repeated as champions during Rivers' senior season, and Rivers was named the 2011 Naismith Prep Player of the Year as well as a McDonald's All-American and All-State honoree. He was also chosen as Florida's Mr. Basketball in 2011. Rivers then played in the 2011 Nike Hoop Summit for Team USA. He won a gold medal with Team USA at the 2010 FIBA America U18 Championship. Learn more about Rivers by following him on Twitter (@AustinRivers25) and on Instagram (@austinjrivers).

College/International Summary

As the son of coach Doc Rivers, Austin Rivers grew up around basketball. The 6-foot-4 guard had his choice of colleges and opted for Duke to play for coach Mike Krzyzewski. Rivers and Seth Curry formed a strong scoring backcourt and the freshman scored at least 15 points in five of his first six games. The highlight of his season was a buzzer-beating three-pointer in a win over North Carolina, one in which the Blue Devils were down by 10 points with two minutes to play. He finished the game with a season-high 29 points, including six treys. On the season, Rivers averaged 15.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists. Despite scoring 19 points in the first round of the NCAA Tournament, the Blue Devils were ousted by Lehigh and C.J. McCollum. Rivers announced he would put his name in for the 2012 NBA Draft 10 days after the season ended. Rivers was drafted with the 10th pick in the NBA Draft by the New Orleans Hornets.

Rooted in bench role
GHouston Rockets
March 23, 2020
Rivers averaged 8.3 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.9 assists across 22.1 minutes in 10 games after the All-Star break before the NBA suspended play.
ANALYSIS
Rivers remains firmly in a bench role behind Russell Westbrook, though he's consistently seeing around 20 minutes a night. Since the break, he's finished in double digits three times -- most notably a 23-point performance on Feb. 26. Since that game, though, he's cracked double digits just once.
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Past Season Summaries
2018

The 2018-19 season was a turbulent one for Austin Rivers. He was traded from the Clippers to the Wizards over the summer of 2018. The Duke product played 29 games for Washington, including two starts, and averaged 7.2 points, 2.0 assists and 1.1 made three-pointers per contest. Then, in December, he was traded to -- and subsequently waived by -- the Phoenix Suns. He quickly found a new home in Houston, where he appeared in 47 games, mostly as a reserve. In just three games, Rivers proved to be a valuable bench player for Houston. Then an injury to Eric Gordon led to Rivers starting games through most of January, averaging 11.6 points, 3.8 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 13 starts. During that run, on Jan. 13, Rivers exploded for a season-high 25 points during a road loss to the Magic. Despite his regular-season success, Rivers saw his role diminish in the playoffs, playing 22 minutes per game in 10 appearances. Rivers' Rockets defeated the Jazz in the first round of the playoffs but lost in six games to Golden State in the second round.

2017

In his sixth NBA campaign, Austin Rivers really broke out with the Los Angeles Clippers. He started 59 of the 61 games in which he appeared and may have posted even better numbers if not for a heel injury that cost him nearly 20 contests. Rivers set new career highs with 15.1 points, 4.0 assists, 2.4 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game. He also shot 42.4 percent and a career-best 37.8 percent on three-point attempts. The Duke product recorded three 30-point performances on the season, all in December. He had back-to-back 30-point games just days before Christmas. In those two contests, he totaled 74 points, nine assists and 11 made three-pointers. For the month of December, he averaged 19.2 points and shot over 43 percent from beyond the arc. After returning from his heel injury Feb. 9, Rivers scored double-digit points in 22 of his next 23 games. The Clippers posted an impressive 14-9 record during that run.

2016

Rivers enjoyed a breakout season in his fifth NBA campaign. He played in 74 games for the Clippers, averaging a career-high 27.8 minutes. Rivers started 29 games during the season, the most in his career. Accordingly, he posted the best numbers of his NBA career, averaging 12.0 points, 2.2 rebounds and 2.8 assists. Rivers also had his best campaign as a shooter, making 44.2 percent of his field-goals and 69.1 percent of his free-throws. He blossomed from deep, making a career-high 1.5 three-pointers per game on a career-best 37.1-percent mark from beyond the arc. The Duke University product scored a season-high 28 points in a win over Memphis on Jan. 4, adding four rebounds and seven assists. He dished a career-best 10 assists against the Knicks on Feb. 8 while scoring seven points. Rivers missed the last six games of the regular season and the beginning of the NBA playoffs due to a strained hamstring. He returned for Game 5 of the Clippers' opening-round series against Utah and played in the final three contests. For the post-season, Rivers made two starts and averaged 8.0 points, 2.7 boards and 1.3 three-pointers over 30.1 minutes per playoff game.

2015

In his first full season with the Clippers, Austin Rivers played in 67 games and averaged 21.9 minutes per contest. He logged time at both the point guard and shooting guard positions, mostly in a reserve role. Overall, Rivers averaged a career-high 8.9 points per game. He posted career highs with a 43.8 field goal percentage and 68.1 free throw percentage. The Duke University product also averaged 1.9 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 0.7 steals per game. He made a career-high 62 three-pointers during the season and shot 33.5 percent from beyond the arc. On March 31, he scored a career-high 32 points against Oklahoma City, drilling a career-high seven three-pointers on nine attempts. He scored 26 points against Philadelphia on Jan. 2, making 11-of-16 shots from the field. In the postseason, Rivers played in each of the Clippers' six first-round contests against Portland. He averaged 10.3 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists in the series. Filling in for the injured Chris Paul, Rivers scored a combined 34 points and dished 11 assists as a starter in the final two games of the matchup.

2014

Austin Rivers began his third NBA season as the Pelicans' backup point guard. He played in 35 games with New Orleans, getting a slight boost in minutes to 22.1 per game. In those contests, Rivers averaged 6.8 points, 1.9 rebounds and 2.5 assists. He scored 21 points against Portland on Dec. 20, making a career-high 11 free-throws on 12 attempts. On Jan. 12, Rivers was traded to the Boston Celtics. He didn't play any games with Boston, as they in turn traded him to the Los Angeles Clippers three days later. By joining the Clippers, Rivers became the first player in history to be coached by his father in an NBA game. Rivers averaged fewer minutes (19.3) with Los Angeles, but his numbers mostly improved. In 41 contests, he posted per-game averages of 7.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists. He raised his field-goal percentage from 38.7 percent with New Orleans to 42.7 percent with the Clippers. On Feb. 21, he scored a career-high 28 points against Sacramento. Rivers played in each of the Clippers' 14 postseason games, averaging 8.4 points, 1.7 boards and 1.1 dimes per contest.

2013

In Rivers' second season in the Association, he played in 69 contests for New Orleans, making four starts. His playing time dropped to 19.4 minutes per game, but he improved upon his numbers from his rookie campaign. Rivers averaged 7.7 points on the season and raised his field-goal percentage to 40.5 percent. He also increased his percentage from beyond the arc to 36.4 percent. The 6-foot-4 guard improved upon his per-game stats in rebounds (1.9) and assists (2.3) as well. He scored a season-high 20 points against Houston on Apr. 12, adding 10 rebounds and six assists. That performance was the first double-double of his career. Rivers dished nine assists twice during the season. In one of those contests, he scored 14 points and collected two steals against Memphis on Mar. 12. In a win over the Lakers on Mar. 4, Rivers set a career high with four steals while scoring 12 points, going 5-of-8 from the field.

2012

Austin Rivers was selected with the 10th pick in the 2012 NBA Draft by the New Orleans Hornets. He played in 61 contests as a rookie, making 26 starts and averaging 23.2 minutes per game. Rivers averaged 6.2 points, 1.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists. He shot 37.2 percent from the field, including 32.6 percent from three-point range. Rivers went off for a season-high 27 points against Minnesota on Dec. 14, making 5-of-6 attempts from beyond the arc. He grabbed a season-high seven rebounds against Indiana on Dec. 22, scoring seven points in a losing effort. The Hornets finished the season at 27-55 and missed the post-season.

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Transaction History
  • June 28, 2012
    Drafted by the New Orleans Hornets in the 1st round (10th pick) of the 2012 NBA Draft.
  • July 1, 2012
    Signed a two-year rookie contract with the New Orleans Hornets.
  • January 12, 2015
    As part of a three-team trade, traded by the New Orleans Pelicans to the Boston Celtics; the Memphis Grizzlies traded Quincy Pondexter and a 2015 2nd-round draft pick to the New Orleans Pelicans.
  • January 15, 2015
    As part of a three-team trade, traded by the Boston Celtics to the Los Angeles Clippers in exchange for Chris Douglas-Roberts and a 2017 2nd-round draft pick.
  • July 13, 2015
    Signed a two-year contract with the Los Angeles Clippers.
  • July 8, 2016
    Signed a three-year contract with the Los Angeles Clippers.
  • June 26, 2018
    Traded by the Los Angeles Clippers to the Washington Wizards for Marcin Gortat.
  • December 17, 2018
    Traded by the Washington Wizards with Kelly Oubre Jr. to the Phoenix Suns for Trevor Ariza.
  • December 18, 2018
    Waived by the Phoenix Suns.
  • December 24, 2018
    Signed a one-year contract with the Houston Rockets.
  • July 16, 2019
    Signed a two-year contract with the Houston Rockets.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2018
2017
2015
2014
2013
2012
Rivers struggled to stay healthy for portions of the 2017-18 season, most notably due to an Achilles injury that kept him out for 18 straight contests. However, when Rivers was on the court, he easily put together his most impressive effort since being drafted 10th overall in 2012. Rivers set career-highs in points (15.1), rebounds (2.4), assists (4.0), steals (1.2), three-pointers made (2.2) and minutes (33.7). Adding on to that, his efficiency didn't take much of a hit and Rivers still knocked down 42.4 percent of his field goal attempts and 37.8 percent of his three-pointers despite the added workload. A career 64.9 percent free-throw shooter, Rivers didn't show much improvement there with a 64.2 percent clip, but his advances elsewhere in his game made him a fairly attractive Fantasy option for much of the year. That said, the Clippers drafted a pair of guards in the first round of the 2018 NBA Draft and that created a logjam in the backcourt, resulting in Rivers being dealt to Washington this offseason. While the 26-year-old will join a playoff team, his path to playing time becomes much more difficult. The Wizards have All-Stars John Wall and Bradley Beal in the backcourt, so Rivers will have to return to a reserve role. That means his playing time is set to decrease fairly significantly, which in turn hurts his overall value. Look for Rivers to provide a scoring specialist off the bench, but his drop in minutes may take him off the radar for most standard leagues.
Rivers garnered a career-high 27.8 minutes per game last season, resulting in him setting career highs in nearly every statistical category. However, it was really a tale of two roles for him during the 2016-17 campaign – that of a reserve and that of a starter. When the Clippers were healthy, he took a reserve role to the likes of Chris Paul and J.J. Redick, posting 9.4 points and 2.1 assists across 23.4 minutes per game with a 51.8 true shooting percentage. But, as the Clippers dealt with a myriad of backcourt injuries, Rivers ended up drawing 29 starts, boosting his production up to 16.1 points and 3.8 assists across 34.5 minutes per game with a 57.2 true shooting percentage. Now, however, Chris Paul and J.J Redick are out of the picture and have been replaced by Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams and Milos Teodosic – a much weaker backcourt. As a result, Rivers could hover near the 27.8 minutes per game he saw last season, but would see it on a consistent game-to-game basis rather than it being an average of two separate roles. If that’s ultimately the case, Rivers’ Fantasy value should see a slight bump heading into the 2017-18 campaign.
While many consider the former lottery pick to be a disappointment after his first three NBA seasons, Rivers seems to have found a home as Chris Paul's backup in Los Angeles. After being traded last season from New Orleans to Boston and finally ending up in Los Angeles, the young point guard settled comfortably into a bench role under the guidance of his father and coach Doc Rivers. Rivers, who played in 76 games last season, rounded out the year by playing the final 41 games with the Clippers. During his stretch in LA, Rivers averaged 7.1 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.7 assists, and 0.6 steals while shooting 43 percent in 19 minutes per game. Rivers brings little to the table in terms of fantasy value, as he posted just 3.4 rebounds and 3.7 assists per 36 minutes last season, and he should continue to see limited minutes as long as Paul remains healthy. On top of his issues with low playing time and poor adjusted statistics, Rivers has struggled mightily with efficiency over the last three years, shooting just 40 percent from the field and 62 percent from the free-throw line on his career. Beyond that, Rivers could see fewer minutes following the signing of veteran point guard Pablo Prigioni, who should add depth to an already crowded Los Angeles backcourt.
Rivers enters his third season in the NBA with a "bust" tag thanks to the former lottery picks' lackluster first two professional seasons, but the negativity surrounding Rivers may be a bit overstated. Last season, Doc Rivers' son averaged 7.7 points, 1.9 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 0.7 steals in 19 minutes per game for the Pelicans. Rivers was also able to greatly improve his three-point shooting, hitting 36 three-pointers, and raising his accuracy nearly four full percentage points to 36 percent between his rookie and sophomore years. Free-throw shooting remains an issue for the combo guard, however, as he connected on just 64 percent of his attempts from the charity stripe. This may be the season that Rivers can finally make his mark on the league. Thanks to the departure of Brian Roberts to the Charlotte Hornets, there's an opening behind Jrue Holiday in the Pelicans rotation. Rookie Russ Smith and former Naismith College Player of the Year Jimmer Fredette will both make claims to that rotation spot, but Rivers holds the upper hand due to his familiarity with coach Monty Williams' playbook, not to mention his personal relationship with his head coach. Rivers isn't the best defender, but he has the ability to be the scorer off the bench that Williams lost when Roberts moved on.
Rivers had a rough season in 2012-13, averaging just 6.2 points with a PER* of 5.95. The combo guard missed the end of the season with a broken hand, but was a healthy participant for the Pelicans' summer league team. Rivers has reportedly improved this summer, but he will have stiff competition for backup guard minutes with Roberts, Morrow and Evans.
As the 10th overall pick, Rivers has known Monty Williams since he was a toddler and is primed to succeed in New Orleans. Rivers epitomizes a “combo guard.” At 6’4, 200lbs, he stands undersized to be a true shooting guard, but his score-first attitude goes against being a true point guard. While a starting point guard at Duke, Rivers averaged 15.5 ppg and 3.4 rpg but only accrued 2.1 apg. What Rivers has going for him is that he has only one point guard ahead of him on the roster.. Rivers will be a key contributor this year, though it remains to be seen where he will be used more. One thing that is for sure is that he will be able to score.
More Fantasy News
Pours in 23 points
GHouston Rockets
February 27, 2020
Rivers amassed 23 points (9-12 FG, 4-7 3Pt, 1-1 FT), four rebounds, three assists and one steal in 25 minutes during Wednesday's 140-112 victory over Memphis.
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Goes for 14 points off bench
GHouston Rockets
February 25, 2020
Rivers notched 14 points (5-8 FG, 2-3 3Pt, 2-3 FT), one rebound and one assist in 24 minutes off the bench during Monday's 123-112 win over the Knicks.
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Scores 14 off bench
GHouston Rockets
February 7, 2020
Rivers finished with 14 points (3-10 FG, 3-6 3Pt, 5-6 FT), three boards and one block in 29 minutes of a 127-91 loss to the Suns on Friday.
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Sees 29 minutes despite illness
GHouston Rockets
February 4, 2020
Rivers (illness) provided 11 points (4-8 FG, 2-6 3Pt, 1-2 FT), four rebounds, three assists and one steal in 29 minutes during Tuesday's 125-110 win over the Hornets.
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Avoids injury report
GHouston Rockets
February 4, 2020
Rivers (illness) doesn't appear on the Rockets' injury report ahead of Tuesday's game against the Hornets.
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