The last game of the day has been the most action packed, but even it can’t live up to the fevered pitch of one particular Clippers fan.
"Clipper Darrell" made the trip north from Southern California and sported what is apparently his trademark look. It is a red and blue suit with a Clippers logo on the back. It is complete right down to the custom-made Clippers shoes.
The superfan, who has a Web site (clipperdarrell.com, naturally), has not missed a home game since he could first afford to buy Clippers season tickets. His streak now stands at 303 consecutive games.
He had the suit made by purchasing a plain red and plain blue suit. He went to a tailor and had him pull half from each suit to make one flamboyant symbol of his love for Los Angeles’ other NBA franchise. But the real appeal is in the story of how he became a fan of the team.
"About 15 years ago, I got fired from a job. The boss told me I would never amount to anything," he said. "I went home and turned on the game, and the announcer said the exact same thing about the Clippers. I’ve been a fan ever since."
Clipper Darrell was by far the most vocal and enthusiastic fan of the Summer League’s first day and his team has rewarded his support with a 45-28 halftime lead over the Dallas Mavericks. Eric Gordon has 11 points and Eric Gordon and Mike Taylor eight each as the Clippers have pulled away.
James Singleton has nine points for the Mavs and Gerald Green has four, but no other player has more than three. Dallas made only 9 of 27 field-goal attempts in the half.
This late in the day, most of the scouts and NBA executives have cleared out. So too, now, have about half of a crowd that was near capacity at its peak.