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The Battle Of Los Angeles

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LA Lakers vs LA ClippersStaples Center in Los Angeles, California is the scene of an intense, ongoing battle between LA’s two resident basketball teams.  The Clippers came to Los Angeles from San Diego in 1984 to challenge the long standing local favorite Lakers on the basketball court.  The Lakers have been playing basketball at a high level for the past 52 years in LA but have undergone both personnel and coaching changes this year.

The Lakers are legends in the NBA and have won the NBA Championship many times over including 5 times in the ‘80’s featuring such hall of famers as Kareen Abdl-Jabbar and Magic Johnson.  The Lakers legacy also includes such NBA greats as Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West and Gail Goodrich.

In 1997 the Lakers acquired 17 year old Kobe Bryant right out of high school along with free agent Shaquille O’Neal…..and the rest is basketball history.   The Lakers won the NBA title in 2000, 2001 & 2002 and then again in 2009 & 2010.  Since 1999, no other NBA has been so dominate on the playoff scene as the Lakers.

The Clippers, on the other hand, did not made much of an impression on the NBA until 2009 when then acquired a first round draft pick by virtue of finishing 19-63 the previous year and had the good fortune to choose  Blake Griffin from the University of Oklahoma and then in 2010 they hired Head Coach Vinny Del Negro.

Then things started getting better for the Clippers and their fan base began to grow larger and larger until in 2012 they challenged the Lakers attendance records. The acquisition of former Hornet Chris Paul has further boosted the Clippers prospects and they are now among the leading teams in the NBA 30 games into the season. They had a phenomenal streak of 17 wins in a row and went undefeated in the month of December.

On January 4th the two Los Angeles teams met to do battle once again at the Staples Center. Chris Paul had 30 points with 13 assists and Blake Griffin scored 24 leading the Clippers to a 107-102 victory over their famous cross town rivals before a sellout crowd of 20,179 roaring fans.

The Lakers now stand at 15-17 while the Clippers are on a roll with 26 wins and only 7 losses.  The two teams meet again on Valentines’ Day.  How Sweet!

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