The Los Angeles Lakers will welcome home two fan favorites on Sunday as Jordan Clarkson and Larry Nance Jr. return to STAPLES Center for the first time since being traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers at the trade deadline.
In their combined six years with the Lake Show, Clarkson and Nance became two of the more popular players on the team and for that reason, it wouldn’t be shocking to see them get a short tribute video at some point during Sunday’s game. However, when Clarkson was asked about the possibility of being honored by the Lakers with a video, he didn’t seem too keen on the idea.
“I’m not going to make it a big deal,” Clarkson added. “It’s just another game. But it’s going to be fun to play in. Just being here back in L.A., to be around my friends, my family is here as well, so just come in and represent and try to get a win.”
Clarkson was always known to give a good quote while he was in Los Angeles, but hearing him say he doesn’t want a tribute video is hardly surprising. While Clarkson can be an emotional guy on the court, he’s not one to show his feelings off the court.
He did take a moment to express his gratitude to the fans in Los Angeles that supported him since day one ahead of Sunday’s matchup.
“They always showed love,” Clarkson said of Lakers fans, via Marla Ridenour of the Akron Beach Journal/Ohio.com. “It’s definitely cool going back, it’s always been like a second home for me, if not home. Just excited to go back, play and try to get some wins.”
In his 11 games with the Cavs, Clarkson is averaging 13.3 points on a career-high 42.2 percent shooting from behind the arc on a career-low 22 minutes per game. His assists numbers have taken a slight dip, but that was never a huge part of his game to begin with.
Clarkson and the Cavs will try and bounce back after dropping three of their last five, including a loss to the Clippers on Friday. If the Lakers do in fact show a tribute video honoring their former players, don’t expect Clarkson’s eyes to get misty.
All stats courtesy of stats.nba.com unless otherwise noted.