While the Lakers were off in China, the Clippers made some changes to the Staples Center scenery. During their home games, the Clippers now will place banners of their starters and key reserves in front of the Lakers’ championship banners, and retired jerseys, blocking them from view.
The goal, new coach Doc Rivers says, is to promote The Clippers’ own players, and give the building a Clipper feeling.
Rivers has a history of making modifications to Staples Center to give his team a psychological edge. While he coached the Celtics, Doc hid money in the visitor’s locker room, telling his players they could have it once they played the Lakers again – in the finals. Keeping that money stashed in the Lakers’ home helped bond the Celtics, and give them confidence against the Purple and Gold.
The Clippers, like most of the league, are certainly enjoying kicking the Lakers while they are down.
But if those banners and jerseys lurking behind the likes of Jared Dudley and J.J. Redick are any indication, the Lakers won’t be down for long.