Clipper Town?

When will Los Angeles fully embrace the Clippers?


(Total votes: 1,264)


Can't duplicate Lakers drama

Shelburne By Ramona Shelburne

There was a moment last season, maybe even a month or two, when the Clippers -- not the Lakers -- were the talk of the town. It was the month after the Clippers one-upped the Lakers -- albeit with an assist from NBA commissioner David Stern -- and brought Chris Paul to town. They hadn't won a championship or even that many games just yet. But they were the story in the NBA and Los Angeles.

Fans flocked to Lob City in droves. "SportsCenter" led with Clippers highlights every night. The Lakers? They were that old, slow team trying to play really good defense and adjust to life under Mike Brown. And yes, they were the No. 2 team in town.

I say all this to remind us of one point: Los Angeles will always be a Lakers town because the Lakers are almost always the best story. Even if the Lakers wanted to, they couldn't be boring.

Yes, those 16 NBA titles are what define them and what has endeared them to the city as a whole. But without the drama the franchise can't help but step into, they are the San Antonio Spurs. Or, in this case, the Clippers, who are somewhat politely shredding their competition this season without offending anyone. Heck, people don't even mention Blake Griffin's death stares after thunderous dunks anymore.

No, the Clippers have somehow become the most boring exciting team in the league.

When will Los Angeles embrace them? I think that has far less to do with championships won and far more to do with everything else. Because right now the Clippers are a great team, but maybe not a great story.

Prolonged success is key

Markazi By Arash Markazi

Sports teams don't win over cities overnight. It is a long process that takes years and even generations to accomplish.

Unfortunately for the Clippers, they will play second fiddle to the Lakers for the foreseeable future. It's not because they aren't the best team in L.A. (they clearly are at the moment), but the Lakers have been L.A.'s team since 1960.

The Clippers moved to L.A. from San Diego in 1984, during the height of the Lakers' "Showtime" era, and went eight years before even making the playoffs and went 22 years before winning a playoff series.

As well as the Clippers are playing this season, it will take years, and most likely decades, of continued success for L.A. to ever be considered a Clippers town.

That's the reality of playing in the same city and the same arena as a team that has won 16 championships and is one of the most storied sports franchises on the planet. From 1948 to 2011, the Lakers franchise missed the playoffs five times. From 1970 to 2011, the Clippers franchise made the playoffs seven times, and won only two playoff series. Some like to compare it to the Yankees and Mets or the Jets and Giants, but all of those teams have won championships. The Clippers have not.

It looks like the franchise has finally turned a corner with Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, but it will take more than a few years and a few championships to fully change their perception in L.A.