Thursday, 01 October, 2020

Steve Ballmer Purchases Former Lakers Arena for L.A. Clippers

The Forum in Inglewood former home to the Lakers and Kings The Forum in Inglewood former home to the Lakers and Kings
Cary Erickson | 25 March, 2020, 21:26

Clippers owner Steve Ballmer has agreed in principle to purchase the Forum in Inglewood, California, which is a necessary step for the franchise to build a new arena in the area, as Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN.com writes.

MSG purchased The Forum for $23.5 million in 2012.

"This is an unprecedented time, but we believe in our collective future", Ballmer said.

The deal allows Ballmer, the former Microsoft CEO who paid $2 billion to buy the Clippers in 2014, to move forward with plans to build a new arena for the National Basketball Association franchise. The purchase by Ballmer appears to be the latest effort to allow the Clippers to establish their own identity in the city of Los Angeles.

The MSG Group, on the other hand, has taken extreme measures to make sure the Forum is the only arena in Inglewood.

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The deal will also resolve litigation brought by MSG, whose executive chairman is New York Knicks owner James Dolan, to block the Clippers' proposed privately funded, billion-dollar arena along West Century Boulevard.

Chris Meany, a principal in the development company overseeing the Clippers' new arena project, acknowledged the importance of traffic management in the deal.

The Fabulous Forum was home for the Lakers from 1967 through 1999, when the team moved to the newly-built Staples Center in downtown Los Angeles.

The Lakers, who continue to dominate Los Angeles from a popularity standpoint, won six of their 16 championships at the Forum before the move to Staples.

MSG spent a reported $50 million on renovations to the arena and re-opened it as a well-regarded venue primarily used for major concerts and combat sports.