Inglewood's City Council will vote Thursday on an exclusive negotiating agreement with a Clippers-controlled company to use city-owned land to build an arena for the team, according to a copy of the agreement. They are the No. 3 team at Staples Center in Los Angeles, behind the L.A. Lakers (NBA) and L.A. Kings (NHL). Since he took over as owner, Ballmer has tried to burnish the image of the Clippers. With Seattle approving renovations for the Key Arena in order to lure an National Basketball Association or NHL team, the Clippers would be an ideal fit if Ballmer can't get the arena built.
The arena would sit on 22 acres just south of where a $2.6 billion football stadium is being built to house the Los Angeles Rams and Los Angeles Chargers. The old Forum is right next to the Rams stadium project meaning Inglewood would have two state of the art arenas in the same city.
The Staples Center lease for the Clippers doesn't end until 2024, but Ballmer is already on the prowl for a new change of scenery.
According to LA Times' Brad Turner, the Clippers' passionate owner will be financing the stadium completely with his own coins. Ballmer okayed putting up pictures of the Clippers in front of the Lakers' championship banners and retired jerseys, but that's just a band-aid. The Clippers are effectively third in the pecking order when it comes to scheduling priority and need approval for anything they would want to do in the arena physically or cosmetically. A year ago that stairway was named the "Ralph Lawler Media and Team Member Entry", in honor of the Clippers' longtime play-by-play announcer. It is now one of the premier concert destinations in Los Angeles.