LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – The elderly Los Angeles Lakers statesman couldn’t help but pile up after his team’s rival Clippers completed their historic crisis on Tuesday night, being knocked out of the playoffs by the Denver Nuggets.
“The Lakers will always have Los Angeles !! It will never change, “five-time NBA champion Magic tweeted.
The heavily favored Clippers, trying to shed the “little brother” label that haunted their franchise, were up 3-1 in the second round series against the Nuggets when they collapsed, losing three games in a row, despite having an advantage. double-digit late in two of them.
The @Lakers will always own Los Angeles !! It will never change 😁
– Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) September 16, 2020
Denver also recovered from a 3-1 series deficit in the first round against the Utah Jazz, becoming the first team in NBA history to recover from 3-1 twice in the same playoffs.
The Nuggets, not the Clippers, will now face the Lakers in the Western Conference Finals starting on Friday.
“The Clippers choked again,” Magic wrote. “They choked against Houston in 2015 and tonight against the Denver Nuggets.”
Magic was referring to the Clippers in the second round of the series against the Houston Rockets in 2015. The Clippers were leading 3-2 in that series, also on the verge of advancing to the Western Conference Finals, when they lost a 19-point lead in that series. second time in Game 6 at Staples Center on track to lose the series.
The Clippers, who acquired superstars Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in the offseason in hopes of finally straightening the ship, will now have to return to the drawing board. Construction will begin in the summer of 2021 on a new Inglewood arena for the team, another step in the Clippers’ efforts to establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with in LA.
However, it could be difficult for a franchise that has never made it to a Western Conference final in its 50-year history.