Although the arena will remain intact, the Staples Center will be officially renamed Cryto.com Arena on Christmas Day, marking a bittersweet moment for long-time Los Angeles Lakers fans.
Staples Center served as the home for the Lakers for 22 years and in that timespan saw numerous historic and iconic NBA moments. After moving from The Forum in Inglewood to downtown Los Angeles, the Laker franchise was fortunate enough to hoist six championship banners in Staples Center and all each carry their own special place in history.
In order to commemorate their success and history with Staples Center, the Lakers paid tribute to the arena with a touching video that recapped some of the franchise’s most iconic moments, via the Lakers’ official Twitter:
Here’s to our favorite stories, and to the ones yet to be written. pic.twitter.com/mqzBfyxRLA
— Los Angeles Lakers (@Lakers) December 24, 2021
The video was played right before tip-off against the San Antonio Spurs, much to the delight of the fans in attendance:
— Daniel Starkand (@DStarkand) December 24, 2021
Aside from the video, several Lakers legends like Robert Horry, Metta World Peace, Luke Walton, Gary Payton and Byron Scott were in attendance to send off the Staples Center ahead of the name change. Even though the game resulted in a blowout loss, it was still an emotional night for many who have fond memories of the Lakers in Staples Center.
Staples Center earned its reputation as one of the most electrifying arenas in the league because of the Shaquille O’Neal-Kobe Bryant duo that led the Lakers to a three-peat. Bryant’s lob to O’Neal against the Portland Trail Blazers is one highlight that fans can instantly recall, alongside Horry’s last-second three to beat the Sacramento Kings. Bryant is responsible for his fair share of Staples Center highlights such as his historic 81-point game, or his 60-point outburst in his final game donning Purple and Gold.
Even though the Staples Center will be changing its name, the memories of the arena will remain forever and it will be exciting to see new moments happen in the Crypto.com Arena.
Shaquille O’Neal feels Staples Center belongs to him and Kobe Bryant
O’Neal and Bryant were the greatest one-two punch the NBA has ever seen, and they accomplished more than most imagined they could while playing in Staples Center. Because of their accolades together, O’Neal believes Staples Center belongs to him and Kobe Bryant.
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