Los Angeles Clippers: Dunk of the Year
March, 11, 2013
By Arash Markazi | ESPNLosAngeles.com
LOS ANGELES -- There was a time not too long ago when the Los Angeles Clippers didn’t like their "Lob City" nickname.
Sure, Blake Griffin coined the phrase when he was caught on camera uttering the nickname for the first time and side-bumping DeAndre Jordan after finding out the Clippers had just traded for Chris Paul.
He later said he regretted it, and he and the Clippers, especially Paul, tried to spend much of last season trying to downplay the nickname.
"It's unfortunate," Griffin said last season. "It's one of those things where we understand it, but that's not what we're about. Before the game we're not going out thinking, 'All right, it's Lob City tonight.' We're just trying to win games and trying to get better."
Paul agreed at the time: "It's something we can't control. We are a complete team, and we want to continue to be a complete team. That's the only way we're going to win games. It doesn't matter if you get 10 lobs and lose the game. It's all about winning at the end of the day."
There was never a point when the team began embracing the name and stopped rolling their eyes whenever a reporter uttered it. It was more of a slow progression. One day Tyga’s “Lob City” remix began playing in the locker room. Then players started to wear a line of “Lob City” hats and shirts from a local clothing line. And then the team started to sell its own shirts and hats at the team store.
Like most good nicknames, it eventually took on a life of its own, and the Clippers are living up to it on a nightly basis, with lob dunks so spectacular they instantly become trending topics on Twitter.
Last week it was Jamal Crawford's between-the-legs lob to Griffin for a windmill jam and on Sunday Jordan finished Paul’s lob over Detroit Pistons guard Brandon Knight.