Clippers now 2-0 on road trip after routing host Miami Heat 110-93

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Chris Paul

Chris Paul scored 26 points and had 12 assists on Thursday in Miami/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers, NBA.com

 

The Clippers on Thursday night put on their best performance of the season by defeating the host Miami Heat 110-93 at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Los Angeles shot 55.8 percent from the field, 41.9 percent (13 of 31) from 3-point range. Miami shot 44.8 percent, just 23.1 percent (6 of 26) from beyond the arc.

The Clippers (7-4), who led 39-15 after one quarter, also out-rebounded the Heat (6-6) by a 35-30 count. Los Angeles had 31 assists, Miami just 11.

The Heat were missing guard Dwyane Wade (hamstring), but it’s unlikely his presence would have made much difference, the way the Clippers played.

Blake Griffin and Chris Paul scored 26 points apiece to lead the Clippers, J.J. Redick scored 14 points and DeAndre Jordan had 12 points and 11 rebounds.

Miami’s Chris Bosh led everyone with 28 points.

The Clippers are now 2-0 on this seven-game road trip. Up next are the Memphis Grizzlies (10-2) on Sunday at 3 p.m. (on Prime Ticket).

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Blake Griffin likes that owner Steve Ballmer will be into the games

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Blake Griffin

Blake Griffin/Photo courtesy of Los Angeles Clippers

 

New Clippers owner Steve Ballmer figures to be at a lot of games this season. With his rather wild and crazy enthusiasm, it makes sense that the television cameras will pan to him as much as possible during breaks in the action or directly after a big play.

As much as Blake Griffin has already said he loves Ballmer’s enthusiasm, he said he doesn’t expect to look in Ballmer’s direction that much. But  he’ll still appreciate him.

“Honestly, I probably won’t pay a whole lot of attention to it,” Griffin said Friday ahead of practice. “But it’s great if you do look over and see your owner there really into it, really supporting you. As opposed to maybe not being there, or looking like he didn’t care.”

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Season-ticket holders to be treated to private party at Universal Studios

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Steve Ballmer/Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily News

 

Clippers season-ticket holders tonight (Thursday) will be rewarded for their loyalty when the Clippers host a private party for them at Universal Studios from 7:30 p.m. to midnight.

New owner Steve Ballmer is expected to be on hand, as will Clippers announcer Ralph Lawler and the Clippers spirit squad.

The Clippers will return to exhibition play Sunday when they travel to Portland for a 6 p.m. game (on Prime Ticket).

Golden State defeated the Clippers in their exhibition opener Tuesday.

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Doc Rivers signs five-year contract extension

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Clippers sign Doc Rivers to contract extension

Doc Rivers (left) and Steve Ballmer/Staff photo by David Crane

 

The Clippers on Wednesday announced that Doc Rivers, head coach and president of basketball operations, has signed a five-year contract extension through the 2018-19 season.

“This is an important day for this organization,” Clippers owner Steve Ballmer said. “I am excited to work with Doc for a long time as we build a championship culture that will deliver results both on and off the court.
“Not only is Doc one of the best coaches and executives in the game, but he continually embodies the hard-core, committed and resilient character and winning culture that the Clippers represent. It was one of my top priorities to ensure that he was firmly in place as the long-term leader of this team.”

Rivers, who in 2013-14 led the Clippers to a franchise-record 57 victories in his first season at the helm, has been impressed with the energy brought by Ballmer, who recently purchased the team from Shelly Sterling after her husband Donald lost control of the team following his highly publicized racist comments.

“Steve has shown a clear and determined desire to make the Clippers one of the most elite, first-class and championship organizations in all of professional sports,” Rivers said. “We know we have work to do to get there, but I am motivated by the challenge and thankful for the opportunity to stand together with Steve as we continue to move toward our goal of winning an NBA title.”

Rivers is entering his 16th season as a head coach, having previously held that position with the Orlando Magic and Boston Celtics. Rivers, 52, is one of three active coaches – Gregg Popovich (Spurs) and Flip Saunders (Timberwolves) with at least 600 victories. Rivers has 644.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

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Steve Ballmer admits he was ‘nervous’ at Monday’s fan festival

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Steve Ballmer/Photo by David Crane, Los Angeles Daily News

One would never know that new Clippers owner Steve Ballmer gets nervous, what with the powerful yet zany way he goes about addressing large groups of people.

When Ballmer made his way through the fans seated inside Staples Center at Monday’s fan festival, Ballmer was his typical wild and crazy self, high-fiving fans with gusto. He got to the dais and started screaming, with fans loving every second of it. But he was jittery, or so he says.

“I was pretty nervous, I’ll admit,” Ballmer said. “I was pretty nervous before I went out. I asked (coach) Doc (Rivers), ‘What do you do?’ I thought maybe he had been to a fan rally before. I know what to do with folks in the tech industry, blah blah. Tech industry, you don’t get a lot of guys really excited about the tech. Turns out sports fans and tech guys might be different, but they still get fired up about the things they’re fired up about.”

Ballmer, 58 is the former CEO of Microsoft.

 

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Doc Rivers has no issue with Shelly Sterling the fan being courtside

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News Clippers owner Steve Ballmer passionately addresses fans at the Clippers fan festival on Monday at Staples Center. (Photo by David Crane, Staff Photographer)

 

Don’t be surprised if what was negotiated in the Steve Ballmer purchase of the Clippers isn’t met with open arms by Clippers fans in attendance at Staples Center this season. The $2 billion Ballmer spent is what it is. If that’s what he wanted to pay, we have no problem with that. But Shelly Sterling, who did broker the deal with Ballmer, also gets all this, according to the Associated Press:

- 10 tickets in Sections 101 or 111 for all Clippers games in Los Angeles.

- 2 courtside tickets for all Clippers games in Los Angeles.

- 6 parking spots in Lot C for each game

- 12 VIP passes including access to Lexus Club, Arena Club, or Chairman’s Lounge and media room or equivalent, for each Staples Game.

- 3 championship rings following any Clippers title

- Titles of “Owner Emeritus” and “Clipper’s Number 1 Fan” for the rest of her life.

Doc Rivers, coach and president of basketball operations, was asked at Monday’s post-fan festival news conference at Staples Center what he thinks of Shelly Sterling sitting courtside at home games.
“Shelly, I look at her now as, number one, what I’ve heard, this deal doesn’t get done; I think we all understand that,” he said. “You can say what you want about Shelley, but without her, this deal does not get done. I think we have to understand that. The second part is she wants to be a fan. She’s no longer the owner. But she wants to be a fan. I’m fine with that. What’s wrong with being a fan?”

Ballmer was able to agree to those perks partly because there was no one to tell him he couldn’t.

“I did this deal by myself and I’m happy I did,” he said. “I think it required a little bit of flexibility and maneuvering. Kind of a little easier to dance and move a little bit when you’re by yourself as opposed to with others.”

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Shelly Sterling announces $2 billion sale of Clippers to Steve Ballmer

Los Angeles Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling has announced the franchise’s $2 billion sale to former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

The record-setting transaction was signed by Ballmer and Sterling Thursday evening, but both parties remained mum until releasing statements late that night.

Shelly Sterling said in the release that she was acting as the sole trustee of the Sterling Family Trust, which owns the Clippers. ESPN reported that experts had recently declared co-owner Donald Sterling to be “mentally incapacitated,” transferring power over the team to Shelly under the rules of the trust.

“I am delighted that we are selling the team to Steve, who will be a terrific owner,” Shelly Sterling said. “We have worked for 33 years to build the Clippers into a premiere NBA franchise. I am confident that Steve will take the team to new levels of success.” Continue reading

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Jamal Crawford doesn’t want to speak on possible sale to Steve Ballmer until it is official

No sooner did the news hit Thursday that former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer would likely be the Clippers’ new owner pending NBA approval of his $2 billion bid to buy the team, did it become know that guard Jamal Crawford and Ballmer know each other.

We got a hold of Crawford through an exchange of direct messages on Twitter on Thursday night. He didn’t want to say much just yet, however.

“Hearing about the news, but don’t wanna speak on it until everything is official if that happens,” Crawford wrote.

Fair enough.

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L.A. Times reporting Steve Ballmer to purchase Clippers for $2 billion

The Los Angeles Times is reporting that Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has won a bidding war to purchase the Clippers for $2 billion.

The Los Angeles News Group hasn’t confirmed the report and there are many steps before any sale is final. Following the Times’ report, Donald Sterling’s attorney Max Blecher, in an email, told our reporter Jack Wang : “He is resisting and will resist any sale of the team forced by the NBA.”

Any sale still must be approved by the NBA Board of Governors.

We will update as more information becomes available.

L.A. Times story

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