Bill Plaschke

Tuesday’s news of the change of corporate sponsorship for the Los Angeles Lakers/Clippers/Kings/Sparks arena from “Staples Center” to “ Arena” (effective beginning December 25) drew plenty of jokes, and it also drew a “It’s the same location, but it’s kind of like stripping the history here by calling it something else…It’ll be weird for sure” from the Clippers’ Paul GeorgeLos Angeles Times sports columnist Bill Plaschke went even more over the top than George in a Twitter thread Wednesday:

That is definitely an interesting reaction to an arena changing from one corporate sponsor to another.  How in the world are the “settings for so many memories” impacted by the building carrying a different corporate sponsor? Also, people don’t have to refer to buildings by their corporate sponsorship name; no one’s stopping Plaschke from calling it “Staples” for all eternity in conversation, and he could probably do so in print too, although might offer some pushback to that. But no, the building’s “identity” and the memories there are all “gone” now that it carries a different sponsor.

And it’s notable that all the “unchanging names” Plaschke references at the end are that way because…those venues haven’t sold their naming rights to a corporate sponsor. Plaschke’s argument here would make much more sense if he was talking about a name change for one of those venues, or for anything that didn’t currently have a corporate sponsor and was adding one. Instead, we just get the impression that he really cares about the chain of office supply stores that had their name on this building. Won’t someone please think of the Easy Buttons?

[Bill Plaschke on Twitter; Plaschke photo from The Los Angeles Times]

About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.