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"The Crip Arena?": Russell Westbrook Was Confused When Asked About Staples Center Changing Its Name To Crypto.com Arena

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Russell Westbrook On His Altercation With The Ref: “He Screamed At Me. I Told Him Don't Scream At Me... I'm Not Your Child, I've Got Kids Of My Own.”

It was recently announced that the Staples Center, the arena that both the Los Angeles Lakers and the Los Angeles Clippers will be renamed the Crypto.com Arena due to a new naming deal.

Crypto.com will reportedly pay $700 million for a 20-year naming deal for the stadium. Despite the fact that Staples bought a "lifetime naming deal", the rights were bought back by AEG in 2019, and it seems as though they have agreed to a new deal with Crypto.com.

"Staples bought lifetime naming rights for the Staples Center in 2009. It was thought that as long as the arena was standing, it would be called the Staples Center. It was the first lifetime naming rights deal for a major market arena. It will always be the Staples Center to fans."

"AEG 'quietly bought back the naming rights from Staples, owned by 2019 by private equity firm Sycamore Partners... Staples originally paid $120 million for a 20-year naming rights deal in 1999.' Crypto-com will pay $700 million for a 20-year deal for Crypto-com Arena."

Los Angeles Lakers star Russell Westbrook was recently asked about the name change from Staples Center to Crypto.com arena. Westbrook misheard the reporter and asked "The Crip Arena?", which was met with much amusement from the people present. (1:30)

What'd you say, The Crip Arena? I didn't know what you said... Honestly, the business side of basketball and how deals go down, obviousl as players we don't know exactly what happens, how it goes down. We kind of just see it like everybody else... Staple Center's got so many great many memories, just for me as a kid, growing up in LA. So many great things has happened in that building. Regardless of the name, the building is still the building. That's what's most important.

Russell Westbrook's confusion at first was funny, but he made a great point about how what is "most important" is that the Lakers will still be in the same building, regardless of the name.

There is no doubt that a lot of people have already criticized the name switch. At the end of the day though, the name change shouldn't affect the quality of basketball being played and there will likely be many more memories made inside the arena.