- Divisional rivals Clippers and Lakers will meet four times next season
- All-NBA talents on Los Angeles teams include LeBron, AD, Kawhi and Paul George
- Will the Association make this the marquee matchup on Christmas Day?
To quote Ron Burgundy, that escalated quickly.
It took the largest haul of assets in NBA history, but the Los Angeles Clippers put up their 2019-20 “Open for Business” sign on with the brightest neon lights they could this weekend, signing 2019 Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard and trading for 2019 MVP Finalist Paul George from the OKC Thunder.
— Foot Locker (@footlocker) July 6, 2019
The center of the basketball world is currently the Staples Center. Leonard and George have vaulted the Clips to the top of the 2020 NBA Championship Odds, though their Staples co-tenants, the Los Angeles Lakers, have also reloaded, kicking off the summer acquiring all-world Anthony Davis to go along with LeBron James.
Who’s going to run this town?
Clippers vs Lakers Season Series Odds
|Who Wins Season Series: Clippers or Lakers?||Odds at BetOnline|
|Los Angeles Clippers||+150|
|Los Angeles Lakers||+225|
*Odds taken 06/07/19
Analysis: These are now supercharged versions of their previous selves, and it’s likely going to be the first time both LA squads qualify for the playoffs in the same season since 2006. The upper hand has to go to the Clippers here.
According to @EliasSports, the #Clippers have become the 2nd team in NBA History to add multiple 25-point per game scorers in one offseason in Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. pic.twitter.com/kG26uwDBJj
— Tomer Azarly (@TomerAzarly) July 6, 2019
Much like the situation Kawhi stepped into in Toronto, this team has been on the assembly line, waiting for the superstar engine to drive it. There’s cohesion and a system in place under Doc Rivers, a stellar supporting cast including reigning Sixth Man of the Year Lou Williams, budding stars like Landry Shamet and Montrezl Harrell, and potential surprises like big man Ivica Zubac and Jerome Robinson.
Jerry West Executive Resume:
• Acquired Kobe from the Hornets
• Signed Shaq to the Lakers
• Drafted Klay and Draymond
• Helping hand in KD to Golden St.
• Traded for Paul George
• Signed Kawhi Leonard to the Clippers
Might be the best executive ever.
— Jordan Reid (@JReidNFL) July 6, 2019
Leonard and George make that lineup freaky scary. And the front office, led by all-time home run hitter Jerry West, still has moves to make to beef up that lineup.
I’m a huge Bron fan, but Lakers fans deluding themselves into thinking they are as good or better than the Clippers right now is funny.
— Nate Jones (@JonesOnTheNBA) July 6, 2019
The Lakers are a mashup of characters from the island of Dr. Moreau. They’ve gone all different ways, picking up last season retreads like JaVale McGee, Rajon Rondo, Alex Caruso and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, unknown commodities like Quinn Cook, one-time mega stars like DeMarcus Cousins and veteran marksmen Danny Green and Jared Dudley.
Keep talking……. NO RIVALRY
L.A. LAKERS ?? pic.twitter.com/tm0v62eDCi
— Adrian/ Lakers??? ??? (@adrik24) July 7, 2019
Mix them with James, Anthony and Kyle Kuzma, and they’re a work in progress.
The Clips should handle them pretty easily in the regular season, though I’d suggest that final game, if it was closer to the end of the year, will be one where the Lakers flex.
The Pick: Clippers (+150)
Clippers vs Lakers Christmas Day Odds
|Will the Lakers Play the Clippers on Christmas Day?||Odds at BetOnline|
Analysis: With the injuries to Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant and Golden State’s Klay Thompson, the NBA schedule makers really only have one true marquee matchup, and it’s in Hollywood.
And it’s no wonder that it will be LeBron James again treating us in primetime. Perhaps no one brings more cheer on December 25 than James, who will undoubtedly be making his 14th appearance in 17 seasons on the Christmas slate, including a staggering 12 straight years.
Needs to happen Christmas Day https://t.co/Oy7cpDWJVX
— J.T. ?? (@JTSOUNDSOFF) July 6, 2019
Surprisingly, Davis and Leonard were both spectators at last season’s game. Kawhi hasn’t played in a Christmas game since 2016 when the Spurs played Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade and the Bulls (things done changed!). Davis hasn’t played on December 25 since 2015, when the Pelicans lost to the Heat.
If we’re on the topic, I figure Portland to host the final game of the night against the Rockets, while the Celtics vs Nets kicks things off, followed by the 76ers vs Bucks. The middle game? Welcome to the world of Zion, as the Pelicans host Steph Curry and the Warriors. Once again, the Toronto Raptors get dissed, and finally, finally! The Knicks are taken off the docket.
The Pick: Yes (-250)
Let's have fun and keep it civil.