Doc Rivers: Lakers fans can blame Boston for their covered banners

Banners of Clippers players block the view of the Lakers' championship banners at Staples Center.
(Eric Pincus / Los Angeles Times)

Lakers fans have yet another reason to groan at the thought of Boston.

A Boston guy came up with the idea of covering the Lakers’ championship banners and retired jerseys at Staples Center during Clippers games, according to Clippers Coach Doc Rivers.

Here’s how it went down.

“Last year when the Clippers were blowing us out, obviously I was sitting there with Eddie Lacerte, our trainer in Boston, and he taps me on the leg and says, ‘Look at that,’ ” Rivers said before Wednesday’s preseason game against the Utah Jazz.


“I didn’t want to look at anything at that point, we were down by 30 points, and I look up and you see all the banners. He said, ‘Man, I would never have that.’ This is what Eddie said. And I thought ‘Well, he’s right.’ Again, the Lakers can blame a Boston guy.”

Rivers said that since the Clippers announced the move, he’s received mostly positive feedback.

“The other day I was in a drug store and a Laker fan said, ‘I can’t believe you covered up our banners, but I was always wondering why you hadn’t done it in the past,’ ” Rivers said.

“It’s the Clipper court and that’s the way we feel. Again, it’s not a disrespectful thing at all, it’s not intended that way at all, it’s more that when we play our game it should be about us and only us.”

The Lakers have 12 championship banners — five titles won in Minneapolis are represented on one banner — and 10 retired jerseys, including one for announcer Chick Hearn. The Clippers have yet to win a championship.

TNT NBA analyst Reggie Miller weighed in on the saga during a conference call with reporters Tuesday, supporting the coach’s decision.

“I love it! It’s about time,” Miller said. “You cannot tell me that any Clippers coaches before have not thought about that and gone to management and actually said something. It took Doc Rivers to come in here. You play in the same building, how could you not cover them up? I think it’s a brilliant move. You are telling your team: ‘We’re taking over L.A., and we respect the banners … but this is our time.”


Steve Blake seeks identity with Lakers

J.J. Redick returns in Clippers’ win over Utah Jazz, 103-99

Jeremy Lin might have reduced role with Houston Rockets this season