Is Trump National LA the LA Clippers secret NBA playoff weapon?
The Los Angeles Clippers - Jay Leno’s longtime running punchline - are in the second round of the NBA playoffs for the first time in 30 years. You could chalk this up to the Clips hoodwinking the Bulls out of Elton Brand several years ago. You could point to Sam Cassell’s capacity for winning while annoying. You could credit Mike Dunleavy for being a much better coach than his son is a player.
And you’d be wrong.
It’s the golf. Has to be the golf.
When I went out to Los Angeles in the heart of the NBA regular season, I heard about the Clippers golf strategy while at Trump National LA. It turns out that the Clippers organization is very generous in helping visiting teams set up tee times.
If you think the concierge at the Four Seasons is good, you haven’t seen nothing until you’ve seen the Clips suits when a bunch of 6-7 guys want to play golf. They spring into action faster than John Daly at the $5,000 slots.
They made sure the New Jersey Nets were good to go at Trump National LA during a West Coast Swing. Jason Kidd - a golf nut - and a number of his teammates enjoyed a long day at Trump’s waterfall-heavy place, by report of Trump general manager Mike van der Goes. The Nets later lost by 13 to the Clippers on the trip. A game Vince Carter left with a stiff back.
Couldn’t have been a golfer’s back of course though.
Now, I’m not saying that the real reason Denver Nuggest forward Kenyon Martin - an ex-Net by the way - was suspended by George Karl was that he’d been out there hitting a white ball on the ocean cliffs. That’s not the truth at all.
But this golf helpfulness does seem to be working over the long run.
Clippers owner Donald Sterling probably wishes Trump reopened the course last season. Might have spared him a lot of grief.
Golf as an NBA homecourt advantage boost? You’d better believe it.
But it sure makes the NBA playoffs a lot more interesting.
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