The Clippers may have seen more success in the NBA in recent years, but the great city of Los Angeles remains firm in their support of the Lakers. Young Clippers guard Austin Rivers was selected to throw out the first pitch for the Los Angeles Dodgers game against the San Francisco Giants on Monday night, and he was promptly booed by the pro-Lakers crowd, even though it was “Clippers Night” at Dodger Stadium.
The Dodger holding Clippers Night, and once again a Clipper is booed at Dodger Stadium, Austin Rivers, no wonder most Clips don't show up..
— Bill Plaschke (@BillPlaschke) September 20, 2016
Interestingly, Rivers claimed that it was his first time ever throwing a baseball, according to Rowan Kavner of Clippers.com:
Austin Rivers said this is his first baseball game and first time throwing a baseball. Just happens to be tossing out the first pitch! pic.twitter.com/WtePNwRXsb
— Rowan Kavner (@RowanKavner) September 20, 2016
Of course, booing Clippers players has become something of a time-honored tradition at Dodgers games. Chris Paul regularly gets jeered at whenever he shows his face at Dodger Stadium, feeling the wrath of Lakers fans who still aren’t pleased with the 2011 trade that was vetoed for basketball reasons. Native son (and former Boston Celtic) Paul Pierce was booed mercilessly after bouncing the first pitch off home plate. In 2015, the entire stadium erupted in cheers after it was announced that the Clippers had been eliminated from the playoffs.
While a crowd reaction at Dodger Stadium may not be an official poll, it’s still a solid indicator that, despite the Clippers string of playoffs runs coinciding with some lean times for the Lakers, the heart of Los Angeles still pumps purple and gold blood.
The Lakers love doesn’t stop at booing Clippers, though. Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James made an appearance at the Coliseum to watch the Rams return to Los Angeles, and was promptly greeted with a “Kobe” chant.
The Lakers have a long way to go in the rebuilding process, but it’s good to know that Los Angeles still has their backs. Oh, and fortunately having a Clipper throw out the first pitch didn’t jinx the Dodgers; they won 2-1 on a walk-off double in the bottom of the ninth.