Clippers are growing playoff beards (Video)

The Clippers are joining the storied tradition of growing playoff beards to build team unity for the postseason. Chris Paul says the players were discussing ideas for what they should do and they thought about growing their hair out. They ran into some trouble there because of the bald players like Chauncey Billups, so they settled on beards.

Here are some of the quirky highlights from the video:

    - Blake Griffin says he can’t grow a mustache
    – Chris Paul said he can’t grow a full beard
    – DeAndre Jordan only grows hair on one side of his face

Griffin said players aren’t allowed to take down their beards, but they can touch up the edges to keep it shapely. I dunno about that, a real playoff beard goes untouched.

H/T I am a GM

Clippers apparently celebrated Chris Paul for winning an award that doesn’t exist

That is so Clippers. We’re guessing they meant to say Chris Paul won “NBA Player of the Week” for games played through April 1 last week (Paul Pierce won the award in the Eastern Conference). Or maybe Dave McMenamin is mistaken, and the Clippers were honoring Chris Paul for most offensive play of the week — the one where he was stripped by Metta World Peace late in the game on Wednesday night.

Clippers say there is no rivalry between them and the Lakers

Prior to this season, there wasn’t much of a rivalry between the Lakers and Clippers. Both teams are from Los Angeles and play in the same arena, but the Clippers were always horrible. The Lakers owned the Staples Center, and I don’t think anyone outside of Clipper Darrel or Donald Sterling would have disputed that. Now that the Clippers are loaded with talent and the Lakers are aging, times could be changing. If they are, the Clippers are not yet willing to show it.

“Honestly, I don’t think it is one,” DeAndre Jordan said Tuesday according to the L.A. Times. “But I’m not worried about any other team. I don’t care about them. I respect them as a team and as players. Once we step in between that line, I could care less about any accomplishments they have.”

The two teams have met twice this season and combined for 11 technical fouls and an ejection. Perhaps that was a coincidence, but it certainly felt as though there was some added incentive when the two times they got together. In all likelihood, the Clippers prefer to keep the spotlight on the Lakers for as long as they can. When you start getting into rivalries and talk about “this is our house,” pressure can build in a hurry.

“We don’t make too much of it,” Chris Paul added. “First of all, it’s been so long ago that we played them. We’re two totally different teams. I don’t even remember that last game too much. But it’s obviously a big game Wednesday.”

Paul also denied even remembering this incident between him and Pau Gasol. Blake Griffin concurred, saying that Wednesday night is “just another game” between two teams who happen to play in the same city and the same arena. However, we all know those last two things make it more than just a game. The Jets haven’t won anything since Super Bowl 3 and the Giants have won two Super Bowls in the past four seasons. Does that mean their meetings at the Meadowlands are all “just another game?” Hardly.

Photo credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE

Do Clippers have right to demand control of message, revenue cut if Darrell is profiting from being fan of team?

When people learned the Clippers had asked their most notable fan, Darrell Bailey, to drop “Clipper” from his nickname, there was a great deal of outrage. We felt the Clippers were cutting down one of their greatest supporters because now that they’re winning and successful, they feel they can speak out. The Clippers issued a statement accusing Darrell of not actually being a fan of the the team, “but a fan of what he can make off of the Clippers.” Their position was defended much better in an LA Times piece by Bill Plaschke.

Plaschke depicts Darrell as a guy trying to profit off the Clippers and says the team offered him a chance to be paid and treated like an official team cheerleader. The team wants to control what he gets paid, the appearances he makes, and what he says about the team, because they feel he is profiting off of them.

There is some merit to their argument, and they have a right to ask him to go by Darrell Bailey rather than “Clipper Darrell.” But I don’t believe they have a right to control his messages about the team and the money he makes.

Darrell has become well known because he is a great hype guy. Whether he was a fan of the Clippers, Lakers, Bucks, or Celtics is inconsequential — people love him because he makes games exciting. He acquired the “Clipper Darrell” name out of association. You need a nickname for “the guy at the Clippers games with the funny suit who’s always yelling,” so he became Clipper Darrell.

If people want him to attend their wedding, Bar Mitzvah, or game, it’s because he makes events exciting. He became known through the Clippers, but not because of them.

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Did Clippers make Blake Griffin, DeAndre Jordan delete tweets supporting Clipper Darrell?

When news first came out that the Clippers wanted Clipper Darrell to drop “Clipper” from his nickname, many people were outraged. Even Clippers star players Blake Griffin, Chris Paul, and DeAndre Jordan expressed support for Clipper Darrell via Twitter. But it looks like the Clippers may have gotten to them.

Jimmy Traina pointed out on Twitter Thursday morning that both Griffin and Jordan deleted their tweets of support for Clipper Darrell, suggesting that the team asked them to remove the tweets. Chris Paul’s tweet of support remains, so either he refused to delete the tweet, or he hasn’t had a chance to. Here is a screenshot of all three tweets via SB Nation LA:

If you’re doubting that management would have asked the players to delete tweets that makes the team look bad, just remember this is the same organization that had a problem with the way one of its most ardent fans was supporting the franchise.

‘Clipper Darrell’ forced to drop moniker by Clippers, who say he’s not a fan of team

Before Blake Griffin, before Chris Paul, before “Lob City,” there was “Clipper Darrell.” But now, the team is making its most recognizable fan drop his nickname.

Clipper Darrell, aka Darrell Bailey, was having a profile done on him by a sports site, but when the website was denied media credentials, Bailey called the team to find out why. Carl Lahr, the team’s senior vice president of marketing and sales returned his call.

“We got to talking and I said the way I feel, you don’t want Clipper Darrell no more,” Darrell said in an interview with FishbowlLA. “You want Darrell Bailey back. They said, ‘You would do that?’

“That’s when everything went haywire and they said I was trying to make money off sponsorships. If people are going to pay me to do some things, why not do it? I don’t see any harm in it as long as I’m not hurting the brand itself. I’m going to high schools, charity events, I do it all. They told me at the end of the conversation that, ‘We would like you not to be Clipper Darrell anymore and would like you to go back to Darrell Bailey.’”

Seen in his custom-made red-and-blue suit, Darrell has been a fixture at Clippers home games for some time, performing kooky dance moves during breaks in action and also leading chants. On his blog, Darrell says he’s been fan of the Clippers for 15 years and estimates he’s been to over 400 games. That’s a lot of losing, and yet Darrell stood by his team.

Close followers of the team might remember the parade he led in an effort to recruit LeBron James to join the Clips in 2010 or when he threatened to sleep outside Staples Center last year in protest of the lockout.

Rather than his trademark suit, Darrell wore black to the the Clips’ 109-97 loss Tuesday night to the Timberwolves at Staples Center. On Twitter, several Clippers players including Paul, Griffin and DeAndre Jordan have expressed their support of him.

On Wednesday the Clippers released a statement defending their decision:

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Clippers players charge room service to each other’s rooms on the road

If you ask me, the Clippers have come together quicker than expected. Once they acquired Chris Paul, you knew people were going to start paying attention to that other team in Los Angeles. The Clippers have as much talent as any team in the NBA, and they have been able to turn that talent into wins despite playing only 30 games together. What’s the secret? They’re having fun.

“We’ll go to each other’s room and just order a ton of room service,” Randy Foye said when discussing life on the road, according to the L.A. Times. “We’ll order from someone else’s room and say bring it here and we’ll put the bill on someone else’s room. The guys always do that.”

Foye said DeAndre Jordan seems to get the shaft most often since he’s “got a big contract” now. The Clippers have also been known to post pictures on Twitter of their teammates sleeping on the plane, along with capturing other embarrassing moments.

Chemistry off the court can be overrated at times, but with such a young team like L.A. it shouldn’t be overlooked. In order to succeed and keep pace with some of the better, more experienced teams in the West, the Clippers have to keep it loose. If sticking each other with room service bills helps them do that, I’m sure Vinny Del Negro will encourage them to keep it up.