For those of you unfamiliar with Clipper Darrell, he's a super Clippers fan who has dedicated himself to Clipper Nation, even when the team was very, very bad. So you have to imagine this decision is not going to be very popular.
It is with great sadness that I must report to all those in NBA NATION that I have been told by Clipper management they no longer want me to be Clipper Darrell, a name that was given to me by the media because of my unwavering support and team spirit. I am devastated!!!!
Learn more about Clipper Darrell after the jump, and how players have rushed to his support.
Check out this interview with Clipper Darrell which shows off (among other things) his custom-made BMW showcasing his love of all things Clippers.
ClipperBlog: Clipper Darrell Interview (via Clipperblog)
Media Bistro has more on the story.
Carl Lahr, senior vice president of marketing and sales, eventually returned Bailey’s call last week and informed him that the organization didn’t need him doing stories or speaking to the media on behalf of the team.
"We got to talking and I said the way I feel, you don’t want Clipper Darrell no more," Bailey told FishbowlLA Wednesday. "You want Darrell Bailey back. They said, ‘You would do that?’"
According to Bailey, the Clippers offered him an additional free season ticket if he dropped the Clipper nickname.
"That’s when everything went haywire and they said I was trying to make money off sponsorships," Bailey added. "If people are going to pay me to do some things, why not do it? I don’t see any harm in it as long as I’m not hurting the brand itself. I’m going to high schools, charity events, I do it all. They told me at the end of the conversation that, ‘We would like you not to be Clipper Darrell anymore and would like you to go back to Darrell Bailey.’"
Of course, if Clipper Darrell is trying to make money by selling merchandise trademarking his popular name, that could cause some ire with the Clippers organization, but you have to imagine there are more creative and PR-savvy ways to fix this issue besides stripping him of his name and causing an uproar in the NBA community. It's not going to be a popular decision with fans of the team.
Worst of all, the Clippers organization underestimated the sway that Clipper Darrell holds with a lot of people. Namely, the players on their team. Now a mini-revolt could be brewing.
@clipperdarrell WE GOT YOU!!!— Chris Paul (@CP3) February 29, 2012
Bring back #ClipperDarrell— Blake Griffin (@blakegriffin) February 29, 2012
I love Clipper Darrell....#ClipperDarrell— DeAndre Jordan (@deandrejordan) February 29, 2012
Donald Sterling sure does make it hard to root for the Clippers, doesn't he? He turns his own players against him.
To discuss Clipper Darrell with Clippers fans, go to Clips Nation.