In the City of L.A the Lakers have always been king, They are that team that your girlfriend cheers for, They are that team your coworker cheers for, They are that team that attract most people who know little to nothing about basketball. For all intensive purposes they Run the Los Angeles Sports market and are Internationally known and for many years they're Staples Center counter part The Clippers were the punch line of many jokes ala Charlotte Bobcats. For the first time in a long time the LA Sports market is there for the taking with the Clippers a 50+ win team and one of the leagues marquee teams. Players like Blake Griffin Jamal Crawford, Deandre Jordan make the Clips a Highlight reel waiting to happen but its Chris Paul who drives the bus for the Red, White& Blue who changed the Landscape of basketball in Southern California forever.
Chris Paul is one of the Premier players in the NBA and is the biggest reason for the Clippers becoming a dominant marquee team to watch in the west. Coupled with Jamal Crawford and Eric Bledsoe I think it's safe to say that the Clips have the best point guard core in the NBA. Make no mistake about it Chris Paul is the leader of the other team in L.A. If you watch the Clippers play he controls the tempo, He directs traffic and is a leader on both sides of the floor which is what they need him to be in the Playoffs this year.
This season has been a year of firsts for the Clipper organization. Like the 1st Division Championship in franchise history. This is huge for them because the neighbors in purple and gold have always had a strong hold over the town, even when they play each other. You always saw more Kobe Bryant jerseys then anything but now the stands aren't so Laker dominant, Now we see Blake Griffin and Chris Paul jerseys in Clipper red and blue that roam the Staples Center. For the first time things are even in L.A and thats great for the NBA.
The Winston-Salem native was once gain an All-Star and averaged 16 Points per game along with 9.7 Assists. Paul's impact goes beyond the line up though, he is a leader. Throughout the Course of these playoffs Paul will need to play an even bigger role for the Clippers and play his best basketball against a tough Memphis Grizzlies team. The 1st round will provide a very physical challenge in which the Clippers passed last year in 7 games vs the same Memphis squad but these Grizzlies are bigger and tougher then last year after the trade of All-Star Rudy gay. They beat you up inside and harass you on the perimeter, Paul will need to be composed and play elite basketball in the first round. Shall he past the 1st round test the question of "How far can the Clippers go"? Will arise. Shall he and the Clipper defense disrupt the tempo and force turnovers then the Clippers will become "Lob City" and challenge anyone who stands in their way in the Western Conference.
Paul is an Elite player but Can he be the Driving force towards a Non-Laker Championship banner hanging at the Staples Center?
The Playoffs begin April 20th with Chris Paul and the Clippers taking on Zach Randolph and the Memphis Grizzlies.