Over the past few years, things have started to change in the city of Los Angeles with the Lakers and Clippers heading in completely different directions. Chris Paul and company are finally starting to come together as a legitimate force to be reckoned with in the Western Conference while Kobe Bryant’s squad has begun a potentially extensive rebuilding process.
With the Clippers now the team to beat in Los Angeles, the rivalry between the two NBA teams at the Staples Center has started to heat up. Bringing in new head coach Byron Scott has only added more fuel to the fire in this rivalry with the three-time NBA champion clearly motivated to face the team across the hall. Scott had this to say about the Lakers-Clippers rivalry in an interview with ATVN’s Connor McGlynn:
“I have a chip on my shoulder because everyone keeps saying they’re number one in Los Angeles. It’s still a purple and gold town,” said Scott. “We’re looking to make sure in the next couple of years that this rivalry is truly what it should be, which is a rivalry of two great basketball teams here in LA.”
Heading into the 2014-15 NBA season, the Lakers will be looking to rebound from arguably the worst season in franchise history. The 16-time NBA champions won only 27 games last season resulting in the team missing the playoffs. It would be only the sixth time the Lakers have missed the postseason in the franchise’s history.
As for the Clippers, Doc Rivers’ squad will come into next season with high expectations once again. Blake Griffin and Paul will lead the way for a team that many anticipate to be one of the elite in the Western Conference and a potential title contender.
Even though the Lakers aren’t expected to be the dominant force of old, the rivalry will likely continue to be heated with neither side backing down. The two teams will face off for the first time next season on Oct. 31 with the Lakers being the home team.[divide]
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