Although the Los Angeles Lakers fell short of expectations with their early exit from the playoffs last year, fans of the Purple and Gold took solace in the fact that the L.A. Clippers also came up short with their defeat in the Western Conference Finals.
It was another reminder of the rivalry that exists between the fan bases in L.A. Of course, things were kicked up a notch after both teams managed to secure a superstar duo to get them to the promised land.
While the tandem of LeBron James and Anthony Davis managed to finish the job during an unprecedented 2020 campaign, the Clippers are still trying to find a winning recipe behind Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. However, the state of both teams heading into the 2021-22 NBA season has superfan Clipper Darrell reconsidering his fandom.
Clipper Darrell even went so far as to suggest retirement if the Lakers win another title before his team does, via Landon Buford:
Brendan Haywood on @clipperdarrell’s retirement comments:
— Landon Buford (@LandonBuford) September 3, 2021
The reaction to Darrell’s declaration is indicative of how many in and around the NBA feel about both team’s chances this season. If that is the case, he may want to get the red and blue suit prepped for retirement.
The Lakers made headlines this offseason with the blockbuster acquisition of Russell Westbrook. They have since revamped the roster with veteran experience and young talent behind their new trio of superstars.
Meanwhile, the Clippers’ offseason was plagued by uncertainty regarding Leonard’s future until he ultimately signed a four-year extension. They also parted ways with two key members of their backcourt in Patrick Beverley and Rajon Rondo, who has since re-signed with the Purple and Gold.
Both teams have been destined to meet ever since the war of words both on and off the court was initiated upon the arrival of their new superstars. But, unfortunately, it still has yet to come to fruition after the Clippers came up short against the Denver Nuggets in the bubble and the Lakers getting knocked out by the Phoenix Suns in the opening round last year.
Of course, it is a long season, and only time will tell whether or not Clipper Darrell will actually have to follow through on retirement.
Lakers serious contender to sign DeAndre Jordan
With the return of Rondo, the Lakers still have one more spot left on the roster, and reports of DeAndre Jordan coming back to L.A. are starting to heat up.
The Brooklyn Nets traded Jordan to the Detroit Pistons, who are reportedly planning to negotiate a buyout to make him a free agent. Should that happen, L.A. is considered a ‘serious contender’ to land his services.
The prospect of a former Clipper in Jordan winning a title at Staples Center with the Lakers could be the straw that breaks Clipper Darrell’s back.