Los Angeles, CA — The Staples Center media room was filled with smiles and excitement as the Los Angeles Clippers kicked off their media day.
Los Angeles is a city that has been dominated by the Lakers from day one, but the Clippers — with the addition of Kawhi Leonard and Paul George — are a top contender coming into the season. With these additions, this makes the two Los Angeles teams a much anticipated match up.
Although this is a contest the world awaits, George feels that the Clippers need to focus on all of the teams in the league.
“I don’t put that pressure that, that is the team we have to compare ourselves to, there are twenty-nine other teams we have to compete against, it’s not a head to head battle of LA,” George said.
Both Leonard and George were excited to be home and eager to kick off media day. For George, sometimes being home hasn’t quite set in but there are daily reminders that he is finally home to stay.
“The fact that I am unpacking instead of packing at this time is a surreal moment. Ultimately what I wanted to get to in my career was getting back home and being close to my people.”
With the load of talent the Clippers possess, championship talks were circulating but Leonard knows that is no easy task and is very aware of what it takes to get there.
“Determination, knowledge, being out there as one unit is what drives a championship team,” Leonard said. “You just figure out the bumps in the roads on the way there.”
The Clippers are excited to get down to business and get in the gym as a unit. Many teams start building chemistry during media day and the first day of training camp, but for the Clippers, they began working on their chemistry early.
The team has already bonded with many team events such as paint balling and a fishing trip over the summer.
“We want to get as close together as we possibly can, that family environment that we had last year and see where it takes us at the end of the year,” stated head coach, Doc Rivers.
There is much fun to be had but the Clippers are all business this season. The team is looking to make a deep run and be the last team standing.
Media day was all about happy faces and although the pieces are all there, it remains to be seen if those same expressions will be showing come June.
The Clippers will open its preseason on Thursday, Oct. 3 against the Houston Rockets in Honolulu, Hawaii.