Jerry West Dies, And NBA Fans Are Shattered
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Jerry West Dies, And NBA Fans Are Shattered

Former professional NBA superstar and high-ranking executive, Jerry West, has died. The Los Angeles Clippers posted a confirmation across their social media accounts. "Jerry West, the personification of basketball excellence and a friend to all who knew him, passed away peacefully this morning at the age of 86. His wife, Karen, was by his side."

Jerry West, appropriately, was an absolute basketball phenom when he was playing. He was a #2 draft pick in 1960, and he'd go on to show why he should've been #1. We're talking about a man who, for every single one of the 14 seasons he played, was in the All-Star game. A man who took the Los Angeles Lakers to the NBA Finals nine times. Again, not just the playoffs, but the Finals.

...Unfortunately, out of those nine efforts, only one was successful and earned him and his team the big one. But he was honored with a 1969 Finals MVP nod despite losing — a feat in itself! Also, you know, Bill Russell was the king of the playground at the time. There's no shame in not being able to strike down Zeus.

Jerry West Died But His Legacy Will Survive Forever

West may very well have held a chip on his shoulder from all those NBA titles he likely felt should've been his. How do we know that? Well, he'd go on to become the head coach for the Lakers after retiring from on-court competition. Led the team to historic runs and toward the big NBA Finals win wedding, but they were, regrettably, always the proverbial bridesmaids.

Until West became a general manager for the team, that is. During his GM run? Five NBA championships. Oh, did I say five? I meant six. Before formally retiring in 2000, he snuck in one more championship after assembling, oh, just Kobe Bryant, Shaq, and legendary head coach, Phil Jackson. Nobody important, really.

He's the inspiration for the NBA logo itself! West left a dynasty in his wake. As great as some of the NBA's greatest have been in the history of the sport, none have ever had the impact and staying power of Jerry West.