The LA Clippers Continue to Sail Further in the Postseason

sailing
In cities with two professional sports teams, why does one team get more love than the other one does? In New York, it is the Giants over the Jets and the Yankees over the Mets. In Chicago, it is the Cubs over the White Sox. Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, the Lakers tend to get more attention than the Clippers do. While historic success in the playoffs is certainly one factor, oftentimes one team in a city is significantly younger than the other one. By the time the Clippers played their first NBA game in October of 1984, their LA counterparts, the Lakers, had already won three NBA Championships.

How did the Clippers get their name? The city held a “name the team” contest, in which locals submitted 14,000 entries. The name “Clippers” refers to Los Angeles’ function as a harbor containing Clipper ships. While Clippers are simply fast sailing ships, the name also refers to the Star of India, a famous windjammer ship docked in San Diego and which had inspired the team’s name.

The Clippers had a rough start in the NBA. They had traded three rising stars for three aging veterans, and inherited the Los Angeles Sports Arena, from the Lakers. Even replacing their coach did not jumpstart the Clippers. They finished their premiere NBA season with a 31-51 record, or .378 winning percentage.

Although the Clippers have never been NBA Division Champions or earned spots in the NBA Conference Finals or Finals, they have appeared in the playoffs four times. They first made the playoffs during the 1991-1992 season. Basketball Hall of Fame coach Larry Brown led the Clippers to a 45-37 record. Though they lost in the first round to the Utah Jazz (3-2), they had definitely set sail towards playoff success.

During the following season, the Clippers made the playoffs again, though they had earned a meager 41-41 record. Again, the Clippers lost in the first round. This time it was to the Houston Rockets. They came within striking distance in Game 5, but ultimately lost it 84-80, in Houston.

Four years later, the Clippers qualified for the playoffs again. This time, they crept into post-season play, though they had earned a record of 34-48 (.414 winning percentage). However, the Clippers faced the powerhouse Utah Jazz, losing in three consecutive games.

One decade later, the Clippers had another solid season during their 2005-2006 campaign. They earned a regular season record of 47-35. However, this time, the result in their first playoff series was more favorable. The Clippers got the job done on both offense and defense, defeating the Denver Nuggets (4-1). During the next round, the Clippers would face the run-and-gun Phoenix Suns. Though the Clippers were huge underdogs, they played the Suns closely. However, they ultimately lost the series 4-3.

Though they are a young team, the LA Clippers have begun to achieve some playoff success. They hope to go deeper into the playoffs. Cheer them on with LA Clippers Merchandise, as they continue sailing towards their first NBA Championship!

By: Rick Grantham

About the Author:

Rick Grantham is an avid sports fan. Most of Rick’s articles focus on Los Angeles clippers merchandise. Many articles are related to nba fan gear and other sports related topics. Rick is a contributing author to BooYah Village