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Battle of L.A.: Ranking the Lakers, Clippers and Kings' 2012 Postseason Success

Steven SlivkaCorrespondent IIIMay 14, 2012

Battle of L.A.: Ranking the Lakers, Clippers and Kings' 2012 Postseason Success

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    In a city that has been defined by "Laker Gold" and "Dodger Blue," other notable Los Angeles teams like the Clippers and the Kings are giving L.A. the title of "postseason monster."

    The Lakers, Clippers, Kings and Dodgers are all enjoying success in 2012.

    But in a city that has 11 NBA championships and four World Series titles, it's difficult to define who exactly is the "Best in L.A."

    For now, let's take a look at the three teams in L.A. playing in the postseason and see where they rank in terms of success in 2012.

3. Los Angeles Clippers

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    The Clippers are enjoying one of their most successful seasons since moving to Los Angeles in 1984.

    After a turn of events that ended with the Lakers being denied access to Chris Paul, the Clippers landed one of the league's top point guards.

    Led by Paul and superstar "dunk extraordinaire" Blake Griffin, the Clippers finished the lockout-induced season 40-26, one game behind their inner-city foe, the Los Angeles Lakers.

    The Clippers finished the regular season 24-9 at home and took out the fourth-seeded Memphis Grizzlies in the opening round of the NBA playoffs.

    Despite their success this season, the Clippers are the third-best postseason team in L.A.

    Sharing an arena with the "big brother" Lakers isn't an easy task and makes it that much harder to compete.

    However, getting into the second round is always exciting for a team that has only made the postseason five times since moving to L.A.

    They are a young, exciting team to watch and have been a great story this season. But as long as the Lakers are right there with them, the Clippers will always be second fiddle.

2. Los Angeles Lakers

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    The Lakers are in the postseason once again. No surprise there.

    But this is not the same Lakers team that used to dominate in the playoffs and expect championship or bust. After being taken to seven games in the first round of the playoffs, the Lakers have shown they are not as dominant as they used to be.

    However, don't ever count out the Lakers as long as Kobe Bryant is on the team.

    Bryant is always known for taking an excessive amount of shots and trying to do too much for the team. But with your power forward being irrelevant and your successful, young center having the maturity of a high schooler, it's nearly impossible to rely on anybody else.

    The Lakers will have their hands full with the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder have had a week to rest while the Lakers have only had a day.

    As long as Kobe is on the court, the Lakers will always have a chance.

1. Los Angeles Kings

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    For the love of Luc Robitaille can anybody slow down the Kings?

    Los Angeles is enjoying its best season since 1993 and have become the hottest team in the NHL.

    The Kings are a solid 9-1 in the playoffs this year and are undefeated on the road.

    Led by sensational goaltender Jonathan Quick and gritty captain Dustin Brown, the Kings are three wins away from returning to the Stanley Cup Finals for the first time in 20 years.

    In a city where the Lakers and the Dodgers are all the rage, the Kings are letting the City of Angels know that they are here too and aren't planning on going anywhere.

    The fact that they were an eighth-seed coming into the playoffs and have dominated the way they have taking out the top two teams in the Western Conference is nothing short of amazing.

    Everybody is excited about the Kings right now, unless you're a Coyotes fan.

    Quick is a Vezina Trophy finalist and has put himself in position to win the Conn Smythe trophy as well.

    With the Clippers and Lakers both struggling in the first round of their respective playoff series, the Kings have made it look easy needing only nine games to advance to the Western Conference Finals.

    Could this be the year Tinsel Town finally tastes Stanley Cup greatness?

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