The Clippers face the Warriors at Oracle Arena on Wednesday night, a showdown between teams with just one combined loss who have a history of disliking each other.
Just don’t call it a rivalry.
That’s a loaded word that implies rich history between two teams who have often battled when the stakes are at their highest. So despite the apparent animosity, Andre Iguodala is among those who don’t believe that a rivalry exists.
From Sam Amick of USA Today:
“It’s not a rivalry,” Warriors small forward Andre Iguodala said with a grin as he clocked out Tuesday afternoon at the team’s practice facility. “Neither one of these teams has done anything.”
Is Clippers-Warriors is a rivalry? Probably not in the truest sense, especially when their latest shared memory was a first-round playoff series that went the Clippers’ way in a thrilling seven games. Celtics-Lakers, this is not, as the Clippers have never won a title and the Warriors haven’t won one since Rick Barry was leading the way back in 1975.
L.A. and Golden State have had tense battles recently, both in the regular season and in the playoffs. In a contest played last Christmas, Blake Griffin was ejected, and later accused the Warriors of playing “cowardly” basketball. In the final meeting of the regular season, there was a confrontation in the hallway of Staples Center that resulted in a heated conversation. And, following L.A.’s Game 7 postseason victory, there was once again a similar exchange.
Rivalry or not, it certainly makes for some compelling basketball.