Stanley Cup Final: Staples Center abuzz with championship fever
The area around Staples Center was transformed into a sea of black and purple as crowds buzzed with championship fever. Vendors hawked team memorabilia while others hoped to buy tickets.
Luke Sager, 38, said he didn't get the money together in time to buy tickets for the game but was hoping to score a last-minute pair of tickets for him and son Kolya.
"He's been going to games all year," said Sager, pointing to his son on his shoulders.
As they headed to the game, season ticket-holders Mike and Claudia Pearson, 64 and 62, said they had waited a long time for the moment. The couple watched the Kings lose the Stanley Cup at The Forum in the 1993 series to the Montreal Canadiens. They've been craving for a big win ever since.
"They better win," Mike Pearson said, proudly showing off an autographed Kings jersey.
"Even if they don't win tonight, they still have three more chances," Claudia Pearson said. "[But] we don't want to see that. Take them out tonight!"
There was a massive Los Angeles Police Department presence as authorities monitored the area to prevent outbreaks of violence such as those that had marred past championship victories by the Lakers.
-- Melissa Leu at Staples Center
Photo: Luke Sager and his son Koyla hope for tickets. Credit: Melissa Leu/Los Angeles Times