Steve Ballmer bothered by sharing town with Lakers
The Clippers have managed to surpass the Lakers in terms of success over the past few years, but they still remain the secondary team in Los Angeles behind the ever-popular Purple and Gold. Team owner Steve Ballmer, who bought the franchise three years ago, recently acknowledged that competing with the Lakers in LA is annoying.
“When I walk around and people say, ‘Go Lakers!’, does that bother me? Of course it bugs me,” Ballmer told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski during a conversation that aired Saturday. “I’m not used to that. I’ve never been in a city where you actually had two hometown teams. So it’s an unusual thing for me. But we have 29 other teams that we need to beat.
“Now, do our fans get a little extra when we beat the Lakers? Yeah, they do. As I do too at this stage. I also know there’s only one way really to have this become as much a Clipper town as a Laker town, and that is to win an NBA championship.”
Ballmer has done everything possible since taking over the team to help give the Clippers their own identity. He’s changed the teams logos and uniforms, kept them competitive in the Western Conference, and he’s searched for a new home arena where they won’t be secondary to the Lakers. But Ballmer is from Detroit and lived much of his adult life in Washington, so he’s used to towns where there is only one home team to support. So being in LA where there’s two MLB teams, two NBA teams, two NHL teams, and now two NFL teams definitely has to be an adjustment.