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  • Tanya Hubbard

Why The Clippers Leaving LA Made The Most Sense

As I've said once and I'll say it again 🗣 building a Clippers compound in Inglewood, CA will NOT help the Clippers gain support of the city nor fans in the LA area. LA has always had the reputation of being too big and plagued with too many distractions to ever establish itself as a “good” sports city. I always thought that was bullshit but for the Clippers' franchise nothing has been truer.

In the Late 1990's Staples Center was created with the intention to bring fans together to watch some of LA’s top teams compete. But in my opinion, it did the complete opposite. Tension between Lakers and Clippers fans have actually separated the fans instead of uniting them under one roof. With the overwhelming majority of #NBA hoops fans In LA rooting for the Lakers. So what's left for the Clippers ?

The better decision by Clippers owner Steve Ballmer would have been to move the Clippers out of Los Angeles all together, but why didn't he? The answer is: MONEYYYYYY. (The answer is usually money when it comes to these things)

Ballmer has stated on several occasions that the valuation of the franchise probably would be cut in half if it was moved out of Los Angeles. That’s importanttttt because relocating any franchise in the NBA isn’t just up to the owner. You would need approval from at least 16 of the leagues' 30 owners to make the jump. Basically you need to prove that the franchise wont survive in it's current city and that the new city would not just benefit the Clippers but the NBA as a whole. It's hard to make that case, when anyone can basically survive in a number two market in the country. You just have the population density on your side. With that being said what other cities that would have made the most sense for the Clippers?

The two biggest cities to keep in mind would have had to be Seattle and Las Vegas. Seattle had the Supersonics before the franchise abruptly moved to Oklahoma City and which we now know as the Thunder, while Las Vegas has never had a professional basketball team EVERRRR.

Professional sports are just starting to scratch the surface in Vegas with the addition of the NHL expansion team, the Golden Knights, the WNBA following suit by moving the Aces into the city followed by the more recent addition of the the Las Vegas Raiders.

Vegas honestly is an amazing option and the one I think the Clippers would have benefited the most from. Not only would they have gotten the natural home-field advantage of playing in Sin City, it would serve as a brand new market for NBA free agents to consider and that alone would be a draw. Lets not forget the Clippers would have the advantage that the Orlando Magic have (and don’t utilize AT ALL LIKE THEY SHOULD) — no state income tax babbyyyyyy. NBA players flock to Vegas every summer for the NBA Summer League. I can promise you, tampering would be at an all time high 😉.

That leaves Seattle, and honestly, they too would have been a really amazing move for the Clippers to make. The Seattle fans are dyingggggg for another basketball team so the Clippers would naturally get the support of a driven fan base we all but begged the Clippers to make the jump but Ballmers' stated again and again:

"I'd love for Seattle to have a basketball team again," Ballmer said. "It isn't going to be the Clippers. Clippers are the LA Clippers, they will stay the LA clippers. I love having the LA Clippers. We're building a new arena, you can call it a new $2 billion home for the Clippers in Los Angeles. I gotta say owning a team or having a team in LA is a competitive advantage. All things being equal, guys love being in LA. It's a great place to be." 🤮

Well it's all wishful thinking at this point because the Los Angeles Clippers are here to stay. I guess the one advantage, as any die hard Laker fan who is consistently priced out of game tickets by the wealthy who are trying to be "seen at games", knows, we can always catch a Clipper game they usually have the MUCH cheaper ticket option to see the other NBA teams play live. 😌


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