NBA: LA Lakers receive Championship rings — and then lose their season opener

The LA staff had selected to hold out right up until they could return prior to hoisting their 17th championship banner. Ring ceremonies are ordinarily raucous affairs, but Tuesday’s celebration was a tamer one because of to the absence of supporters.

President of the Lakers Jeanie Buss told the lovers absolutely everyone was sensation their absence: “We miss out on you. … But someday shortly we will be jointly.”

Irrespective of it getting an all-but-vacant Staples Centre, gamers ended up offered with their rings by family members on the videoboard. James, in addition to his family, noticed to his delight small children from his I Guarantee University congratulating him. Lakers superfan and rapper Snoop Dogg also requested LeBron James if the Lakers will gain their 18th title in his 18th year in the league.

The layout of the rings paid tribute to the one of a kind 12 months the Lakers have had. Not only has the coronavirus pandemic played havoc with ideal laid designs, the death of Lakers good Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna in January manufactured this year’s championship victory a lot more poignant.

In tribute, each and every ring was adorned with a Black Mamba snake encircling every player’s uniform amount, and the ring has a removable top that reveals the retired jersey quantities at the Lakers, highlighting exclusively Bryant’s 8 and 24 quantities.

Some other numbers also retired by the Lakers involve Magic Johnson’s 32, Wilt Chamberlain’s 13, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar’s 33 and Shaquille O’Neil’s 34.

Kawhi Leonard dunks the ball against the Lakers.
Prolonged-time Lakers announcer Chick Hearn, who broadcast the team’s game titles for the much better part of four a long time, is also commemorated in the rafters of Staples Centre, with an icon of a commentator’s microphone put amongst Bryant’s 8 and 24 jerseys.

The phrase “Leave A Legacy” — the Lakers’ playoff slogan — is also emblazoned in gold in James’ handwriting on every ring.

Even so, right after all that emotion and celebration, it was the Lakers’ Los Angeles rivals, who had the previous word on Tuesday as this shortened, 72-video game season got underway.

The Lakers entered the 2020-21 season as crystal clear favorites to repeat powering James and Anthony Davies. Even so, on Tuesday night time, the Clippers led by as several as 22, ultimately going on to gain 116-109.

Dennis Schroder drives to the basket against the LA Clippers.

Paul George experienced 33 points, 26 of which came in the next half even though two-time Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard had 26 factors. 35-calendar year-previous James had 22 to lead the Lakers but inspite of a spirited comeback, it wasn’t meant to be for the reigning champions.

“I have applied the get the job done that I put in this offseason,” George stated right after the get. “It really is not gonna be really each individual evening. Tonight I bought it likely and was in a position to exhibit up huge time for my workforce.”

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