Lakers And Clippers Renew Rivalry Saturday Night
The new year was a blessing for both the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers, who are sticking to their new year’s resolution, and finishing out close games with a W. The two teams will face off on Saturday, January 14th, tipoff is at 12:30 p.m.
The Lakers easily handled the Clippers on Christmas night, defeating their Staples Center neighbors, 111-102. The Purple and Gold are once again headed in the right direction. December it seemed nearly vacuumed the Lakers into a Black Hole, the team lost a staggering 14 out of 15.
That’s all in the past, growing pains for a young core. Coach Walton’s optimism, to go along with Julie Randle and Jordan Clarkson’s skill, have kept the season alive.
When assessing a developing team, you need to zoom in and look for positive signs anywhere to remain hopeful. The Lakers are a good team at Staples Center, 10-12 at home is a vast improvement from the Byron Scott led Lakers. Their young stars are improving and maturing before our eyes.
Point Guard D’Angelo Russell is averaging 15 points and 7 assists a night. DTLA Weekly favorite player hands down is one Julius Randle. The Power Forward is a Beast, everything from his intensity around the rim to his smooth ball handling skills, averaging 13.7 points and 7 rebounds. He is an emerging star, who will certainly be an All-Star this time next season. Patience Lakers fans, our time will come.
As for the Clippers, they are steady at the 4th seed in the Western Conference. The team was just miserable without stars Blake Griffin and Chris Paul. Dropping 5 in a row, the Clippers were in dismay. In the off-season, the Clippers made it a top priority to beef up the bench. Well, sadly the bench isn’t doing their job.
Once Point Guard Chris Paul returned, he restored order to a chaotic team. At 26-14, the Clippers have reeled off four victories in a row. Besides a triumphant victory over reigning NBA Champs, the Cleveland Cavaliers in Cleveland, the Clippers struggle against the elite teams including the Golden State Warriors, and their latest rival, the Houston Rockets.
This has to be the year the Clippers escape the second round. Being ever so close year after year is soul crushing, almost worse than not reaching the NBA playoffs at all. Behind the great Doc Rivers, and owner Steve Ballmer, the Clippers are one of the most progressive and innovative teams in the league.
The first 4,500 children in attendance will receive a Kids Hoop and Ball set presented by Cedars-Siani. Its part of Heart of LA Day.
Chargers Are Coming To Los Angeles
A year ago at this time the Los Angeles area had no NFL football team after 20 long years of agony for fans of the sport. But with the announcement on Thursday, January 12th the San Diego Chargers Owner Dean Spanos that the organization will be moving to Los Angeles, they now have two. They will move operations immediately and will play the 2017 season at the StubHub center located in Carson.
While the Los Angeles Rams stumbled in their first season here in the southland, the Los Angeles Chargers- (get used to that)- seem closer to success than their soon to be co-tenants. In 2019, both teams will share the new state of the art complex that will be completed at that time in Inglewood. One advantage the Chargers appear to possess is the opportunity to build a solid fan base in the cozy confines of the 30,000 seat capacity Carson venue. In contrast, the 4-12 Rams often played in the half-filled Coliseum with many rooting for the visiting team therefore almost eliminating the home field advantage.
While time will tell if the move is prudent and beneficial for the Chargers, it appears that the organization is excited about the move. The media’s website quoted Spanos in saying that “Today we turn the page and begin an exciting new era as the Los Angeles Chargers”.
The Chargers played one season in Los Angeles in 1960. So it is a homecoming of sorts. Many openly wonder in the NFL hierarchy if the city can support two teams. The feeling here is that many from the San Diego area would still support the team if they had a winning record. Everybody loves a winner, and ultimately that will Decide who will win the heart and wallet of the southern California NFL football fan.