March 3, 2013
By Trevor Wong | @trevor_wong
Twenty-two girls are spaced perfectly apart in three rows at center court inside STAPLES Center. Pitbull's "Don't Stop The Party" starts blaring from the speakers, and in unison, each person rhythmically dances to the beat of the sound.
These are the Laker girls.Jenny, a first-year member on the squad, gave us a look inside the life of her daily schedule. Along with balancing duties on the squad, she also manages to do work as a full-time real estate agent. Despite the hectic lifestyle, Jenny wouldn't have it any other way. "Being a Laker girl is such a priority and incredible opportunity for me. It's such a great job and I can't believe I get to call this my job."
8:30 a.m. After waking up, Jenny says she usually likes to eat a good breakfast - typically oatmeal and a cup of coffee - that will hold her over until after practice. Jenny admits she would love to sleep in and get more rest, but on game days, she mentally prepares herself for a full 24-hour day.
9:00 a.m. Jenny prefers to do a light workout for a half-hour to an hour, whether that is Pilates, yoga or even some cardio.
NOTE: In her spare time, which could be few and far between, Jenny says she likes to stay active with outdoors activities (i.e. hiking).
10:00 a.m. Jenny takes care of real estate work during normal workweek office hours via the computer.
NOTE: Jenny studied at the University of California, Irvine, and graduated with a degree in anthropology.
1:00 p.m. Jenny likes to get a head start in case of L.A. traffic. She usually triple or quadruple checks her suitcase for outfits, and maintains to this day, she has been lucky to not leave anything behind at home.
NOTE: She is originally from Taiwan and first moved here with her parents, where they settled in the Diamond Bar area. She currently lives in Los Angeles.
3:00 p.m. Once at STAPLES Center, Jenny acknowledges it's time to put her game face on and completely focus on what she needs to do to be ready for the evening.
3:30 p.m. The Laker girls go through every dance routine, then go over game operations, such as the screen drop for the pregame video, as well as in-game contests.
Jenny: "There are lines on the court - really, really faint lines on the court. We set our routine and every count to a T. These lines are what we practice and mark off of to make sure our routine is perfect even from the top in the 300 sections. When they look down - just because they're not courtside - they can see how perfect our formation is. That's what we strive for - a perfect show for those courtside and even those on top."
5:00 p.m. Time to relax, eat dinner and get ready. This includes applying makeup and dressing into the first outfits for the game.
NOTE: On non-game days, the Laker girls usually practice on Tuesday's and Thursday's at the team's practice facility in El Segundo for three to four hours.
7:15 p.m. Head out onto the court and prepare for then national anthem.
7:30 p.m. It's finally tip-off.
NOTE: During the games, the Laker girls will change into three or four outfits during timeout breaks and/or quarter breaks. There's a TV in the back - a live feed - so they can hear and see what's happening on the court. When the Laker girls hear the whistle, they'll run back out.
10:00 - 10:30 p.m. After the game ends, it's time to go home, relax and go to bed. Jenny hopes the team wins, so she can dance to "I Love L.A.," which is her favorite part. Her friends joke that she's an "old grandma" because she sleeps so early. "I always strive to be perfect. I want to do a perfect job. After every game, I know there's always something I can work on, but I want to come off the court knowing I did my best."
While the team is on the road, and along with practicing twice a week at the practice facility, Jenny and the rest of the Laker girls spend a lot time in the community, whether that be visiting local hospitals or participating in various charity functions. The squad also appears at Los Angeles D-Fenders' (Lakers D-League affiliate squad) games. "Our schedule is full whether they play at STAPLES or not," she said.
A full, jam-packed schedule, yes, but this is what Jenny loves and appreciates.
Being a Laker girl.