Los Angeles is a divided town now. Wait, no they’re not. L.A .will always be a Lakers town now, and until the end of time. However, this will be a great basketball rivalry. Buss vs Balmer. Jerry West vs Rob Pelinka. Doc Rivers vs Frank Vogel. LeBron & AD vs Kawhi & PG. If Rondo comes back, Rondo vs Beverley. Here’s the thing about that. The Clippers have the advantage in every single matchup. The Clippers have the better owner, front office, star tandem, and role players.
I want to hold off any Lakers fans immediately. I would take PG and Kawhi over LeBron and AD any day. That team is probably better now. However, for the future, PG and Kawhi will own LA in 3 or 4 years. Also Kawhi and PG are in a better position to win than the Lakers. The Lakers have 0 assets to trade now, (except for Kuzma, but he won’t get traded) , and the Clippers are in a position where they could trade their role players, and potentially upgrade.
The Lakers may be the flashy, shiny new LA superteam, but a grit and grind feel is coming from the Clippers. Patrick Beverley, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, Lou WIlliams, Montrezl Harrell, Zubac, Shamet, and McGruder. That’s a real title contender. The Lakers only have a two-year window. Let’s be honest, LeBron’s body will start breaking down, and his production on the court will begin to fall as well.
One of the funniest parts of this new rivalry is the Jerry West component. He was leading the front office of the Lakers for many years, and won 5 championships. Also, when he left the Warriors in 2017, it was reported that even though he joined the Clippers, he actually wanted to join the Lakers . Apparently, “He wanted it more than anything”. Now, he’s across town building a better constructed, younger super-team. The Lakers could’ve easily had him, instead they chose Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka.
Let’s compare the two trades that had to be made to complete this:
Honestly, the Clippers probably gave up more. Consequently, I would do the Clippers trade over the Anthony Davis trade anyway. Also, the reason I would do it is because they essentially traded for Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. Furthermore, early reporting indicated that Kawhi would’ve chosen elsewhere had the Clippers not acquired Paul George. Not only would Kawhi not have come, but maybe he would’ve signed with the Lakers, and that threat pushed the Clippers to go all in.
In conclusion, this will be a fun, inner-city rivalry. It will be one of the best rivalries in sports history. The Lakers have the glitz, glamor, and two stars. Meanwhile, the Clippers have the grit and grind attitude with two stars. The NBA is now saved, and this rivalry will only make things even better.