LOS ANGELES – NBA broadcaster Ralph Lawler announced that his upcoming 40th season as the “Voice of the Clippers” will be his last. Lawler, 80, said he plans to retire at the conclusion of the 2018-19 season. He has called more than 3,100 games since joining the then-San Diego Clippers in the franchise’s first year in California in 1978. He moved with the team to Los Angeles in 1984.
“My wife Jo and I have grappled with this decision annually for 15 years,” Lawler said in a statement. “I now realize that I have spent half of my 80 years as a part of this team. The Clippers are a big part of my life’s DNA. Yet it is important that we have some ‘life after basketball.'”
Clippers supporters and fans around the NBA are familiar with Lawler’s many catchphrases, including “Bingo!” after a made 3-pointer and his signature line, “Oh, me. Oh, my.”
His broadcasting colleagues frequently reference “Lawler’s Law,” which states that the team that reaches 100 points first usually wins the game.
The Clippers will celebrate “Ralph Lawler Night” at Staples Center for the last regular-season game on April 10 against the Utah Jazz. The first 10,000 fans will receive Lawler bobbleheads.
“Ralph Lawler isn’t just the voice of the team. He has been the heart and soul of the Clippers,” said team chairman Steve Ballmer in a statement. “His will be large shoes to fill.”
–Field Level Media