The Clippers released their new logo Thursday, handing out T-shirts at 32 locations around Southern California. I have to admit that when I first seen the new logo, I was a little disappointed. I was thinking that they could have been more creative with the Clipper ship theme, but they decided to be lazy and use CLIP-art and just threw something out there.
To rally excitement around the new look, Clippers owner Steve Ballmer gave away cupcakes at Sprinkles in downtown Los Angeles, and Coach Doc Rivers made an appearance at Pink’s Hot Dogs, personally greeting the estimated 1,000 fans there.
Ballmer acknowledged Thursday that some fans were not happy with the design, but he said that the team’s true fans will embrace it.
“Change is always hard on some people …. But the truth is people get through change. If you love the Clippers, you’ll love the new Clipper logo.”
Ballmer, who bought the team in August for $2 billion, said one of the first things he wanted to do when he took over the team was change the Clippers’ logo.
“The No. 1 feedback I got from fans was change, change. You’ve got to tell people it’s time for change,” Ballmer said. “Change the name, change the logo. Change, change, change.”
He opted against changing the team’s name, but decided to give the Clippers a fresh look.
“I decided I didn’t want to change the name because I thought the name Clippers had come to represent a team that battled, people that battled through adversity,” Ballmer said.
Here’s how Ballmer described the Clippers’ new logo:
“You get the sea of Clippers wrapping around and embracing L.A., probably really important for me as a Seattle guy to make sure people know we love L.A. and we’re here for the long run,” he said. “You get the nautical theme, the ocean, harkening back the Clippers and where we came from. You have silver around every one of the letters, the silver lining in the Clipper cloud as we look to tomorrow and the bright future that we hold. And we put black in as another color because I think most people think black is a hip, modern color.”
As the club explained in a statement on Wednesday, the primary logo retains the legacy colors of red, white and blue as a tribute to the Clippers faithful, while adding black to provide a modern edge.
The curved lines in the primary Clippers wordmark symbolize the horizon of the ocean as seen from the bridge of a Clipper ship — alluding to the team’s nautical theme roots.
Their new LAC monogram depicts a blue “C” wrapping around the “L.A.”, literally embracing the city. The stacked LA also takes the shape of a basketball court signifying “LA Basketball”. In addition, the silver lining seen in the Clippers wordmark signifies the renewed collective optimism of Clipper Nation.
After Ballmer and the organization explained the reasons behind the new logo and uniforms, it has become a little clearer and appealing. I still think Clipper ships still should have been incorporated within the design, but he paid $2 billion for this team and if he wanted to put pink mermaids in the design, who are we to argue. After what the team been through a year ago with the Donald Sterling drama, anything that can lighten the darkness of the recent past cannot be bad at all.
Congrats to Ballmer and the Los Angeles Clippers and good luck.