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MOBY      BLUE 

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The Resurrected LA Clippers

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JARRETTE FELLOWS, JR.

The Los Angeles Clippers have always had a maritime image of tall Clipper ships skimming the ocean waves on sunny 70 degree clear sky afternoons exhibiting seafaring matches between skilled sea mariners. 

While that may be apropos for the waves, it hardly constitutes team championship moxie on the courts of the National Basketball Association. A serious attitude adjustment is needed here. If we're going to maintain the maritime motif, a vastly different one is needed — something akin to sea fury — naval warships like dreadnoughts and destroyers; storms like cyclones, typhoons, tempests, gales; sea monsters like killer whales, sharks, giant squid, leopard seals, even ... Moby Dick.

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Any of these as a nickname would certainly displace the Clipper ship as something of wimpy maritime characterization. A tall ship, nonetheless, but unbefitting of strategic combat.​
 

We have come to favor the latter designation, "Moby," due to its fictional historical reference. A classic story by American novelist Herman Melville about the sailor Ishmael's narrative of the maniacal quest of Capt. Ahab of the whaling ship Pequod, for vengeance against Moby Dick, the giant white sperm whale that bit off his leg on a previous voyage.

The classic story follows two determined foes — an obstinate seaman, and an evil whale dead set on one another's destruction. The protagonist and antagonist depend upon which cantankerous character you dislike the least

 

Moby Dick is a whale.

 

But Moby Blue© is a contingent of basketball pros fictionally infused with a new-found resolve to win

their first NBA title by approaching the game with new grit, entering each contest and court of play empowered by a tempest fueling 48 minutes of competitive fury.

Welcome to the alternate universe of the LA Moby Blue, the resurrected LA Clippers, led by multi-billionaire owner Clive Chalmers, head coach Lou Tyrone, and the starting five themselves — Shai Lennard, Raimes "The Beard" Hardy, Russo Waterbrook, Zuvica Ibac, Barrick Cones, and Nick Bates.  

The fade-to-black Clippers fared well in the 2023-24 season, finishing fourth in the Western Conference, and first in the Pacific Division with a record of 51-31 for a .622 percentage, but couldn't bring it home for the whole shebang, although they sparkled against some pretty good teams in the Pacific Division in the Lakers, Golden State Warriors, Phoenix Suns, and Sacramento Kings.

Now, opening up in an alternate universe for 2024-25 in their own home arena — the Intuitive Dome, with a renewed attitude and "win-ability," the Moby Blue endeavor to win the whole kit and caboodle this time around.

IT'S A NEW DAY IN LA!

Moby Blue© is a registered copyright, all rights reserved by the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. 20540.​

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MOBY BLUE

Alternate Season 1 

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MOBY

BLUE 

MOBY BLUE

After losing the perennial All-Star Jorge Paul, the LA Moby Blue truly began season 2024-25 in an alternate universe in their quest to remain a contender in the Western Conference. The team has been linked to a plethora of reported new signings this offseason, but none of them have been made official, until now.​ 

 

The organization released a press release and announced on social media the signing

of backup 7-foot center Moe Bambam.

 

"Bambam, 26, appeared in 57 games for the Philadelphia 66ers last season,

averaging 4.4 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.1 blocked shots while shooting 39.1 percent from beyond the arc. The center has appeared in 332 career games with the Orlando Magi, LA Rapids and 66ers, averaging 7.0 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.3 blocked shots. Originally selected with the sixth overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft out of the

University of Texas, Bambam was named to the All-Big 12 Second Team, Big 12

All-Defensive Team and Big 12 All-Freshman Team in his lone season with the Longhorns. A native of Harlem, N.Y., Bambam was named a

McDonald’s All-American in 2017."

 

Bambam is set to be the backup center for the Moby Blue, in the absence of both

Macey Plumline and Danny Theus. The team needs a player who can both play defense and stretch the floor as a three-point shooter. Bambam brings a completely different game than Zuvica Ibac, the meteoric-rising Serbian wunderkind.

The other recently acquired Moby Blue star Raimes Hardy says he’s thankful to

just hoop right now: “I’ve been through so much these last few years to where it’s like

a sigh of relief to just go out there and just hoop and have fun doing it… I’m having fun hooping. I’m home having fun hooping… I’m in my safe space.”

As for Russo Waterbrook  "These Are the Many Voyages of Russo Waterbrook."

He can't seem to catch a hitch with a team that will keep him more than a few spins around the globe. Cantankerous personality some say. He's more than likely off again before the Moby Blue crash the courts.

As for Moby Blue chief fire-starter Shai Lennard, not one comment, reflex or

reaction (except on the court). Moby Blue fans hope 2024-25 is the season the

reserved Lennard will play one complete season without injury and help the team

erect an NBA championship banner inside the Intuitive Dome.  

That's the kind of water under the bridge we seek. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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MOBY BLUE

The Fire This Time 

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There's fire coming to Moby Blue court play this season at least from

LA Moby Blue center Zuvica Ibac, if the Paris Olympic Games or the after

hours bar scene is any indication.

Croatian NBA players Ibac and Daro Sarik appeared to be involved in a bar fight 

in the early hours of Monday morning, in Alimos, Greece.

According to TMZ, an altercation that took place at Bolivar Beach Bar, with

Ibac and Sarik both being held back by security. Los Angeles Moby Blue center

Ibac was allegedly seen getting physical with a group of guys before his

international teammate Saric came over.

Sarik, who is currently on the Denver Gold Dust, appeared to try and cool

the situation but appeared to be in a headlock towards the end of the altercation.

Neither Ibac, Sarik, the Moby Blue, the Gold Dust nor the Croatian basketball

team has issued a statement on the alleged encounter.

Croatia had just been eliminated from Olympics qualifying by Greece, as

two-time NBA MVP Giant Antocoumbo celebrated qualification for the very first

time in his career. Ibac and Sarik, who had just been eliminated with Croatia,

were allegedly involved in the bar brawl at 5:30 a.m. local time, hours after

the game had finished.

Stay tuned.

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MOBY BLUE

What's Clive Chalmers' Plan 

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The Moby Blue didn’t have to lose Jorge Paul. Financially, they could

have made it work, as re-signing Paul to a Shai Lennard-like $50 million per

year wouldn’t have violated any CBA rules.

 

After all, isn't Clive Chalmers the "$134 Billion Doller Man?" With the new

Intuitive Dome soon to open, he had all the motivation to keep the

competitive core together.

At 51-31 (36-17 at the All-Star break), the resurrected Clippers aka Moby Blue

finished fourth in the Western Conference, ultimately sinking in six games

in the Western Conference Playoffs first round against the Texas Mavericks.

Now, in an alternate universe, the Moby Blue are poised to win it all 

with a reconstituted core and a new spirit.

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'Capt. Nemo' Will Return

In an official statement from Moby Blue President of Basketball Operations Frank Larry, Raimes Hardy has re-signed with the team.

"Raimes was everything we hoped he would be when we acquired him

from the Philadelphia 66ers last season: a proven scorer, gifted passer

and natural facilitator who protects the ball and makes the game easier for

others. Raimes cares about his craft and works tirelessly at it. We were

better for his presence last year and we will be again."

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After losing Jorge Paul to the 66ers, the Moby Blue will try a two-star

model next season with Hardy and Shai Lennard, with the addition of a

re-tooled cast around them. The Moby Blue are hopeful they can still be

a high-level team next season in a Western Conference that's getting

more competitive each year.

In a written statement, management announced, "In his first season

with the "faded-to-black" Clippers, Hardy (aka 'The Beard" and "Capt. Nemo") appeared in 72 games, holding averages of 16.6 points, 8.5

assists, 5.1 rebounds and 1.1 steals. The 6-foot-5 guard had the

most triple-doubles in a single season for the team since the

2000-01 campaign and became the first player in franchise

history to reach the 25,000-point milestone."

Looking to build off this success, Hardy will be back with the

Moby Blue next season as they open the Intuitive Dome.

Ahoy there!

 

It promises to be a spectacular season with the normally

"shy" but luminous Shai Lennard, and a mix of "Moby Dick,"

"Capt. Nemo," and "The Beard" all rolled into one in Raimes Hardy

— and the rest of the cast christening the Intuitive Dome.

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The Intuitive Dome

That Clive Chalmers Built

In an alternate reality, the brand spanking new Clive Chalmers

Intuitive Dome is on track for a 2024 grand opening for the

Los Angeles Moby Blue

A topping-out ceremony in March highlighted the progress on

the construction and the move toward the completion of the

new 18,000-capacity venue.

 

As dignitaries, team officials and Moby Blue players gathered

inside the steel structure, the form of the venue highlighted the

event. The AECOM design includes a soccer-inspired The Wall

with an intense rake of the 51-row section mimicking that

of a supporters section in soccer. 

There are many surprises, but team chairman Chalmer wants

to save them for fan delight on grand-opening day — all but one

that is, which gives him the giggles like a child on Christmas

morning the giant scoreboard.

"You can all see the scoreboard," he said at the topping-out

ceremony. "You might now know it's a scoreboard, but if you look

at these steel panels for example here on the right, that's the frame

for the scoreboard. An acre, one acre of scoreboard. About five

times any other arena in the league."

Zuck Gilliam, the Clippers' president of business operations,

says the project remains on schedule for a full 2024 opening.

 

And this isn't an arena or a center. This is a dome.

 

"I like the concept of the dome," says Chalmers. "It feels sort

of more unique, more energetic. We are trying to build a

basketball mecca here and I wanted to make a certain kind

of a statement and that is why we went dome. We are the

[Intuitive] Dome."

To increase comfort, Chalmers says he's ensured the most leg

room of any venue in the NBA and seats in the upper bowl of

the Intuitive Dome will have more legroom than the lower bowl

of Cryptom.com Arena.

Seating options include four premium clubs to make up

3,800 lower-bowl seats, 14 court-level suites and 46 suites in

a horseshoe formation on a single level above the lower bowl.

The 14 court-level options include four courtside cabanas

positioned directly behind the baseline seats where Chalmers

sits and include privacy glass lining the player

tunnel on the backside.

The 10 backstage bungalows on the sideline opposite the

benches make up the balance of floor-level suites and offer an

all-inclusive luxury option that features a private suite on the

floor level with direct access to seats in the lower bowl.

 

The 46 halo suites above the lower bowl were designed to blend

into the design to not allow sound to escape while placing suite

holders in the bowl, not remove them from it.

Outside, an 80,000-square-foot plaza will feature bars, diners,

a team store and a regulation-size basketball court complete with

large screen the Moby Blue say will get used by local youth leagues

and AAU tournaments.

 

Inside, Court B is an exact replica of the main court and can

host community and charity events.

 

The Intuit Dome's solar panels combine with on-site battery

storage to generate enough power and storage to run an

NBA Finals game off-the-grid.

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RUSSO EASTBROOK ...

Perhaps you should go "East" young man ... the "West" doesn't appear to have any love for you!

The former MVP point guard should win the "MTSP" Award

for "Most Traded Superstar Player."

Last season, Eastbrook competed for the "other reality"

Los Angeles Clippers. A year before that, LA Rivers. 

Despite his prowess on the court, Eastbrook hasn't been able

to find a permanent home after playing more than a decade

for the Oklahoma City Lightning.

Eastbrook is a nine-time NBA All-Star and earned the NBA

Most Valuable Player Award (MVP) for the 2016-17 season.

He is also a nine-time All-NBA Team member; a two-time 

NBA scoring leader, having led the league in 2014-15 and

2016-17; a three-time NBA assists leader; and a

back-to-back NBA All-Star Game MVP.

 

Eastbrook is one of two players in NBA history to average a triple-double for a season. He has achieved that feat four

times and is the all-time NBA leader in career triple-doubles. Eastbrook is known for his ability to score near the basket, his rebounding, his durability, and his intensity as a competitor.

Eastbrook played college basketball for the UCLA Brown Bears and earned third-team all-conference honors in the PAC-10. He was selected with the fourth overall pick in the 2008 NBA draft by the Seattle HyperSonics, who relocated to Oklahoma City that same week.

 

Eastbrook played for the Lightning for 11 seasons. He

appeared in the NBA Finals as a member of the Lightning in 

2012, losing to the Miami Scorch. In 2019, Eastbrook was

traded to the Houston Missiles, playing one season for the organization before being traded again to the Washington Magicians in 2020. After a season in Washington, he was

traded to the Los Angeles Rivers in 2021.

 

Following two relatively disappointing seasons with the LA Rivers, Eastbrook was traded to the Utah Boogie in 2023 and

was bought out of his contract, joining the Los Angeles Clippers later in the 2022–23 season.

A member of the NBA 75th Anniversary Team, unfortunately

the talented Russo Eastbrook will more than likely never be able to showcase his skills with the alternate reality Moby Blue, as

he is rumored to be on the trade block once again.

Lawrence said he has had talks with Eastbrook's agent

since Jorge Pauley's departure in free agency to Philadelphia.

The Clippers often paired the two former Oklahoma City teammates and friends together on the floor.

 

But with Pauley gone, Eastbrook will likely be playing

elsewhere next season as well.

 

"[Russo] is a tremendous f---ing player," Lawrence said.

"Hall of Fame player. He's one of one for what he [has]

accomplished. Last year was a different role than he's ever

played before, backing up once we made the trade for Raines [Hardy]. Since the time he's opted in and with [JP] leaving as well, we've kind of worked with his agent to see where there's

the best fit for Russo.

"But we got great respect for Russo. He did a terrific job

while he was here, and we'll continue to work through his

agent to see what the best next steps are."

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MOBY BLUE

'Wished [they'd] given Shai more time' 

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LA Moby Blue president of basketball operations Frank Lawrence told CBS Sports, the team was "very disappointed" with USA Basketball's decision to replace Shai Lennard on the Olympic team roster last week.

 

In a statement, USA Basketball implied that Lennard wasn't

on the team in a move that was influenced by the Clippers and Team USA officials after seeing how the two-time Finals MVP was moving and playing during USA Basketball's camp in

Las Vegas last week.

Lawrence's disfavor with Lennard's replacement on the USA Basketball roster was nonsensical considering Lennard's propensity for injuries.  

 

Lawrence said Lennard did not suffer a setback with

his recently surgically repaired right knee. USA Basketball

replaced Lennard's roster spot with Boston's Derick Black.

"No, it was USAB's call and I was quite frankly very

disappointed with the decision," Lawrence said. "[Shai]

wanted to play. We wanted him to play. I was there the first

two practices he looked very good. Was a full participant in everything that they did. I wasn't there for the third practice where ultimately that was the point where they decided

to go in a different direction.

"I expressed to them I really wish that they would've

given Shai more time."

 

Lennard missed the final eight games of the regular

season with inflammation in his surgically repaired right

knee. He returned to play in Games 2 and 3 before missing

the remaining three games of the first-round

series loss to Dallas.

Lawrence said Lennard is expected to be ready when the

the Moby Blue in the alternate reality open training

camp in October.
 

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MOBY BLUE

No Alternate Reality for Russo Eastbrook 

Except that, the young man is off and traveling again and will more than likely end up "East of Los Angeles."

We thought Moby Blue management Chalmers, Lawrence, and Coach Tyrone might come to a meeting of the minds and retain Russo who is still a capable guard, to see how he'd fit in with the Moby Blue. But apparently they saw differently.

Per ESPN, Eastbrook was traded to the Utah Boogie

for a second-round pick swap and cash. Eastbrook is expected to negotiate a buyout with Utah, which is clearly not contending anytime soon, in hopes of signing with the Denver Gold Dust.

 

At NBA Summer League in Vegas, Lawrence was

open about doing what's best for Eastbrook.

 

"Russo is a tremendous f---ing player. Hall of Fame player. He's one of one for what he's accomplished.

Last year was a different role than he's ever played before," Lawrence said. "Since the time he's opted

in and with JP leaving as well, we've kind of

worked with his agent to see where there's

the best fit for Russo."

 

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MOBY BLUE

Analysts, let 'Dynamic Duos' do

what they do; just eat your popcorn 

What's all this dribble about the NBA team heretofore known as the Los Angeles Clippers rapidly slipping from relevancy in championship contention, pinning its hopes on a rapidly deflating Dynamic Duo, that may not be so dynamic anymore.

In a real and alternate universe, Dynamic Duos have fared pretty well, no matter what their detractors had to say.

The Lone Ranger and Tonto, Batman and Robin, the Green Hornet and Kato, Han Solo and Chewbacca, Thelma and Louise,

Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, Bonnie and Clyde ... .

 

Sports wise  Michael J and Scottie P, Steph and Klay, Kobe and Shaq, Magic and Kareem, Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig, Mays and McCovey, Venus and Serena ... I could go on.

So in light of that, a "certain report's" dribble about the alternate reality LA Moby Blue being suddenly reduced to a deflating dynamic duo in oft-injured Shai Lennard and Raimes Hardy with the departure of Jorge Pauley and Russo Eastbrook, is just that dribble.

Dry it up, wipe your weeping eyes, and stop bellyaching! Sit back and enjoy the alternate reality show to come.

We know. Because we got it like that!

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