Gallery: Reasons to be thankful for the Los Angeles Clippers
Jill Painter Lopez
Owner Steve Ballmer has such passion for his Clippers
Steve Ballmer saved the day by purchasing the Clippers for $2 billion. He then became the team's biggest fan, making a grand entrance at the team's fan fest with his high-fives and exuberant “Hard Core!” chants. He's since done whatever the Clippers have needed - from buying the training staff updated athletic equipment for the players – to his contagious cheering from his courtside seat. He even got excited to interview lots of candidates for president of business operations before he hired Gillian Zucker. It's clear Ballmer loves basketball and wants to do whatever it takes to win a title.
Getty ImagesJeff Gross
The 'Be Relentless' theme fits just right
This new theme captures the spirit of the Clippers. Fans, players and team employees embodied this during the Donald Sterling scandal. Now, the organization is focusing on this mantra in trying to win the organization's first championship. The Los Angeles Kings did it in 2012, why not the Clippers? The Clippers are having their ups and downs this season, so they've needed to rely on this theme. If the Clippers are going to get past the second round of the playoffs this year, they'll definitely "Be Relentless."
Doc Rivers is here to stay for Clippers' championship quest
A championship team needs a championship coach, and the Clippers have that in Rivers. He won a title with the Celtics, and Ballmer believed in him by signing him to a longterm extension that runs through 2019 as one of his first acts of business. Rivers got the Clippers through a tough season last year. He has a good way about him with everyone from players to fans and media. After a USC student journalist asked him about Movember, he was inspired to grow a moustache to help bring awareness to men's health.
The Clippers are doing great things in the community
In October, the Clippers spent much of an off day at the Salvation Army in South Central. Every Clippers player attended and had a role, whether it was talking to people or helping distribute food, clothing and handshake. Not only do the Clippers do a lot of charitable work, many of the players have their own foundations. Chris Paul has hosted a dinner fundraiser in which he got his teammates involved, Matt Barnes did the same with a charity football game and Rivers, who has made a commitment to helping in Los Angeles, played golf in the team's annual charity tournament. It's a win-win for the Clippers and the community.
Chris Paul is leading the Clippers on and off the court
CP3 is a leader on and off the court for the Clippers. He already has had a triple-double this season, and he's averaging 18.6 points per game and 9.9 assists (second most in the NBA). He knows when the offense should run through Blake Griffin and has played so unselfish that Doc Rivers has prodded him to be more aggressive. He's a constant, reliable presence and is also the president of the players' association, a role in which he was elected. He does charitable work in so many cities, including New Orleans, Charlotte and Los Angeles. He does it all, and does it all well.