La prensa

SD Gets Clippers Basketball Team Again after 40 Years

Ontario Clippers
Author: La Prensa
Created: 12 March, 2024
2 min read


By Sandra G. Leon

The Los Angeles Clippers professional basketball team has agreed to move its minor league team from Ontario, California, to Oceanside, marking the first time San Diego has had a pro basketball team since the NBA’s Clippers moved north in 1984.

The renamed San Diego Clippers will begin playing at Oceanside’s new Frontwave Arena when the 2024-2025 season begins in the Fall.

Frontwave Arena is a new 7,500 seat capacity entertainment and sporting venue that will host concerts, comedy shows, and community events, as well as soccer games for the San Diego Sockers professional indoor soccer team. The arena is named after its naming rights sponsor, Frontwave Credit Union, which has branches in San Diego, Riverside, and San Bernardino Counties.

The Ontario Clippers have played in the G-League since 2017 when they were launched as the Agua Caliente Clippers of Ontario in recognition of their title sponsor, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians who own a casino near Palm Springs.

In 2022, the team changed its name to the Ontario Clippers.

The National Basketball Association (NBA) G-League is the minor-league level professional farm system that currently has 31 teams with 29 of them affiliated or owned by one or more NBA teams. The league was previously known as the D-League for development, but changed its name to G-League to reflect its sponsorship with Gatorade sports drink.

The G-League’s minimum age is 18 years old, one year lower than the NBA’s 19 year old age limit. Players are signed by the G-League, not a particular team, and can be moved around the League. 

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The NBA’s San Diego Clippers played in San Diego from 1978 to 1984 when new team owner Donald Sterling moved the team to his native Los Angeles and renamed the team the Los Angeles Clippers. The name, Clippers, was a tribute to San Diego’s history of porting tall sailing ships.

The NBA team had moved to San Diego from Buffalo, New York, in 1978, where they played as the Buffalo Braves since being launched as an expansion team in 1970.

Before hosting the Clippers, San Diego had been home to the NBA’s San Diego Rockets from 1967 to 1971. The Rockets were a new expansion team named to honor the city’s manufacturing of Atlas rockets used in the 1960s NASA space program.

The Rockets moved to Houston, Texas, in 1971.  

The San Diego Clippers will join other professional teams in San Diego, including the Major League Baseball (MLB) San Diego Padres, the new Major League Soccer (MLS) San Diego FC, the Major Arena Soccer League (MASL) San Diego Sockers, the National Women's Soccer League (NWSL) San Diego Wave, Major Lacrosse League (MLL) San Diego Seals, and several other smaller league teams in indoor football, rugby, volleyball, and sailing.

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