With Clips’ sponsors fleeing, Staples Center ads get covered up

Ads at Staples Center were covered up prior to Game 5 between the Golden State Warriors and Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday.

Kelvin Kuo/Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

On Saturday, TMZ released an audio tape allegedly of Clippers owner Donald Sterling making insensitive racial comments. On Tuesday, NBA commissioner Adam Silver banned Sterling from the team and league for life after an internal investigation confirmed what many already believed.

In the 72 hours or so in between, there was a whole lot of reaction, including the Clippers losing sponsorships left and right.

Virgin America, Mercedes, Chumash Casino Resorts and CarMax all dropped their relationships with the team. Kia, Sprint, Lumber Liquidators, Yokohama Tires, Red Bull, Corona and AquaHydrate all put their relationships on hold. (Kia and State Farm said they would still use Blake Griffin and Chris Paul in their respective advertisements, according to reports.)


The dropped sponsorships created a logistical issue for Staples Center, the Clippers’ home court, which was previously — of course — adorned with the logos of its many sponsors. Once reporters were let in the building for Tuesday night’s Game 6, the images started rolling in.

Here’s a look at the scene:

It was not yet clear how the fleeing sponsors would respond to Tuesday’s ban of Sterling.

(h/t: For the Win)