Mayor Villaraigosa just met the media under the stands at Staples Center to join LAPD Chief Charlie Beck in urging Angelenos to stay away from the arena area tomorrow night if they don't have a ticket. (Or aren't attending one of the other big events scheduled at L.A. Live tomorrow night — the opening of the Los Angeles Film Festival, E3 activities and a concert at the Conga Room.) Villaraigosa said he would attend the Lakers-Celtics game in an official capacity, but deflected questions about details — saying he had been asked them so often already. When I pressed him afterward for a hint at what his official duties in the arena might be, the mayor smiled and said we would all find out soon enough. That's the point at which reporters nearby began joking that maybe he doesn't have a gig lined up yet — or couldn't cadge a free ticket out of the usual suspects. The presser was held in the media room where the players and coaches sit uncomfortably for questions from Vic the Brick after the games.
Beck: The LAPD will be out in force and checking for tickets. Street closures will affect Figueroa, Pico and Cherry Street as early as halftime of the game.