The city of Inglewood and its Mayor, James Butts, recently held a press conference to respond to a lawsuit filed by Madison Square Garden over an allegedly secret land deal with the Clippers to build a new arena 1.5 miles south of the Forum (MSG owns the forum). MSG’s lawyers claim Butts tricked MSG into giving up the arena’s lease of the city-owned land and then tried to cover his tracks by negotiating with a personal email address and private cell phone.
Butts responded, “the reality is the Staples Center is 20 minutes away and still the Forum is the #1 concert venue in the state of California. So, it’s ludicrous to believe that this is going to change the dynamic of their competitiveness. This basketball arena was going to be built somewhere and somewhere local. The reality is that after we get pass this nonsense everyone is going to cooperate and were going to have the synergy that’s going to be developed by the sports and entertainment district, and it’s going to be unparalleled in this country.”
The Mayor and counsel, Skip Miller Barondess, LPP released the following points:
The proposed Clippers project will include an 18,000 seat arena, corporate headquarters for the Clippers, practice facilities and open space that’s going to include basketball courts that are going to be available to the public.
The city of Inglewood entered into an Exclusive Negotiating Agreement with the Clippers in 2017. Negotiations started in June according to Butts and were unanimously voted for by the Inglewood City Council.