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The history of the Los Angeles Clippers from Wikipedia. 94129
The Los Angeles Clippers are a professional basketball team in the National Basketball Association, located in Los Angeles, California, United States of America. They play in the Pacific Division of the NBA. The club's home games are played at the Staples Center, an arena shared with the Los Angeles Lakers of the NBA, the Los Angeles Sparks of the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA), and the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League (NHL).
In the team's first season in San Diego, it posted a record of 43–39 under new head coach Gene Shue, leaving them two wins shy of the final playoff spot. It would be the Clippers' last winning season for 13 years. It was also in that first season in Southern California that long-time announcer Ralph Lawler began his association with the club. World B. Free, who was acquired in the offseason from the Philadelphia 76ers, finished second overall in NBA scoring average, with 28.9 per game, while George Gervin of the San Antonio Spurs had a 29.6 average.
The 1979–80 season saw the Clippers begin to struggle despite adding center Bill Walton, a San Diego native who was two years removed from an NBA Championship with the Trail Blazers. Walton missed 68 games due to foot injuries (which he also suffered in his final years in Portland). San Diego finished 35–47 as key players missed games due to injuries. Free again finishing second in league scoring, with 30.2 PPG. Paul Silas replaced Shue the following season, and the Clippers finished 36–46, again missing the postseason. Walton missed the entire season again due to foot injuries. Free was traded to the Golden State Warriors in exchange for guard Phil Smith.
The 1981–82 season brought changes to the franchise as Irv Levin sold the team to Los Angeles-area real estate developer and attorney Donald Sterling for US$12.5 million. The Clippers' poor play in the final years in San Diego resulted in averaging only 4,500 fans a game. Sterling lobbied the NBA to relocate the team to his native Los Angeles.
In 1984, the Clippers moved north to Los Angeles, playing at the Los Angeles Memorial Sports Arena. They finished 31–51 under head coach Jim Lynam.
They were hapless for the next seven seasons, including a 12–70 record in the 1986–87 season that was the second-worst single-season record in NBA history at that time, and is now the third-worst winning percentage in NBA history behind the 1973 76ers and the 2012 Charlotte Bobcats. Marques Johnson and Norm Nixon were both injured. That same season also saw Hall of Famer Elgin Baylor join the team as the General Manager and Vice President of basketball operations.
In the 1989–90 season, Baylor made a trade with the Cavaliers that brought Ron Harper in exchange for Danny Ferry and Reggie Williams. That move, along with the 1987 NBA Draft of Ken Norman, the 1988 draftings of Danny Manning and Charles Smith (Smith was acquired from Philadelphia in exchange for the draft rights to Hersey Hawkins), and the 1990 NBA Draft of Loy Vaught, formed a nucleus that made the franchise a playoff contender.