Balloons, banners & the battle for LA hoops bragging rights

First it was the banners. Now it’s balloons. And a lot of hot air.

The Los Angeles Clippers are in the playoffs (and they made that known with a beat down of the Warriors on Monday). The Los Angeles Lakers are not. The two rivals share a building that has lots of banners, and that has led to a season-long battle for bragging rights.

The most recent slight came when Clippers team colors showed up on balloons tied to a statue of Magic Johnson outside Staples Center. Check it out:

Now, as expected Lakers fans weren’t too thrilled with their icon being defiled. They, of course, took to Twitter to voice their displeasure. Here’s a small sampling:

At the time, Clippers coach Doc Rivers said: "Listen, I think this is our arena when we play. So I just thought it would be good that we show our guys (in banners). No disrespect to them. But when we play, it’s the Clippers’ arena as far as I know."

The Lakers aren’t in the playoffs after a franchise-worst season, but we’ve got to think Kobe Bryant is keeping mental notes for 2014-15.

(H/t to FTW)