The Los Angeles Lakers have owned the city of Los Angeles since moving there in 1960. The franchise has won 11 championships and housed some of the biggest stars the NBA has ever seen like Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant.
In recent years the Lakers have struggled through their worst four-season stretch in franchise history. At the same time the team they share the Staples Center with, the Los Angeles Clippers, have made the playoffs each season.
Furthermore, the Clippers have owned the Lakers in head-to-head matchups, winning 18 of their last 20 matchups since the start of the 2012-13 season.
The two teams are set to begin the 2017-18 season against each other, and it should be a good game. The Clippers seemingly took a bit of a step back this offseason, losing All-Star point guard Chris Paul, and the Lakers took steps forward, drafting Lonzo Ball and adding Brook Lopez and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope to their young roster.
In a recent interview with Mike Bresnahan of Spectrum SportsNet, Ball commented on the rivalry with the Clippers and he is looking forward to that first game:
“Gotta see who’s going to win L.A.,” Ball said. “Over the years the Clippers definitely stepped it up and now it’s even.”
Ball will have a tough challenge in his first career NBA game as Paul’s replacement at point guard for the Clippers in Patrick Beverly, one of the best defenders in the entire league.
While the Clippers are still projected to win more games than the Lakers this season, the addition of Ball and cap space to sign two max free agents next summer has the Lakers trending upward and it may be just A matter of time before they regain supremacy in the city of Los Angeles.