The Cincinnati Clippers. Has a decent ring to it does it not? The twitter buzz surrounding moving the Clippers to the Queen City is hot right now. Sure it is speculation but a city can dream can it not?
As you know Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling has been given a lifetime ban today by the NBA for his racial comments that were recorded and released over the weekend by TMZ. The lifetime ban almost confirms that Sterling will have to sell the Clippers franchise.
With the Clippers potentially being up for sale soon the new owner would be allowed to move the franchise should he wish and if the NBA would approve the move. Sure there is a massive push for a team to move back to Seattle after the franchise departed for Oklahoma City. While Seattle is a wonderful city, why not move an NBA franchise back to Cincinnati?
Cincinnati had an NBA team, the Cincinnati Royals who called Cincinnati home from 1957-1972. The team played at the Cincinnati Gardens, an arena that is no longer suitable for anything other than amateur arena football and junior hockey games. The team departed Cincinnati in 1972 for Kansas City and now they call Sacramento home.
It is about time Cincinnati got a third professional sports team. Whether it be an NBA, NHL or MLS team the people of Cincinnati need another team to support, especially during the winter time. A town obsessed with baseball needs something to take its mind off of offseason moves.
Moving the Clippers to Cincinnati would expose the NBA to 2.5 million new people within Greater Cincinnati. That is 2.5 million people who have never had a hometown NBA team. The excitement would be second to none. Basketball is massively popular in the region, thing of Kentucky and Indiana, two states obsessed with basketball. The amount of people needed to support the team are here. Look at Cleveland.
The move would also create an instate rivalry with the Cleveland Cavaliers, the Reds and Indians play the Battle of Ohio every year, why not the Clippers vs. Cavaliers every season? That would create a lot of publicity within the state.
The biggest problem logistically moving the Clippers to Cincinnati is the lack of a new arena in the city. US Bank Arena is old, it needs a massive update or it needs to be replaced. If the University of Cincinnati moves down to US Bank the update will happen, possibly opening up the chances of Cincinnati landing a new team.
Finding an owner that will move to Cincinnati is the other problem. Would a Cincinnati businessman step up and buy the team? Or could the city convince the new owner of the Clippers to move from sunny Southern California to Cincinnati, Ohio? We’ll see.
Granted the chances of this happening are slim to none but we can dream right?