Lakers News: James Worthy Appreciative Of Impact Jerry West Had On Him
James Worthy, Lakers, Jerry West
Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry West was one of the greatest and most influential people not only for the Los Angeles Lakers franchise, but the NBA as a whole. His impact was felt for decades and many Lakers legends have come out to reflect on everything that he meant to them on a personal level.

As the Lakers general manager, one of the most important moves he made was drafting James Worthy with the first overall pick in the 1982 NBA Draft. Worthy recently appeared on Spectrum SportsNet and reflected on everything West meant to him both on and off the court:

“Jerry was a good friend of mine. I’m sitting out here on the golf course playing some Grateful Dead music thinking about Bill Walton and then I get this news. So instrumental in my life away from the court. Did so much for me on the court. But I remember 1982 when I came out here for a physical, Jerry West picked me up in a 944 Porsche at LAX and we hung out for like three hours and he was just a delight to get to know.

“If you knew Jerry away from the court, you got to know who he really was. He was a sweetheart of a man and really cared about people and he’ll be missed. The commitment and what he gave to the game is second to none. The best GM I’ve ever known at picking talent. Yeah, he’ll be missed.”

Worthy would continue on, noting West’s amazing ability to not just identify talent but also see how they would fit with the team, while once again adding just how great of a person he was off the court:

“He was so good at picking talent. Picking guys like me in the first round over other players like Dominique [Wilkins] and Terry Cummings, he just knew how the roles would set up for guys. Picking guys like A.C. Green who we really needed, Mychal Thompson in ’87. One of the only GMs that said, ‘I’m not waiting for Kobe, I’m gonna take him now.’ So he had vision and he had a lot of foresight.

“He did so much for the game as far as making guys aware of who they are and what their talents really were. He was just an amazing GM and amazing coach, great insight and if you got to know him away from the game you really got to know him. He just cared about people. He did so much that we will never know about. He shared his money and his time. He was just that kind of guy. He was The Logo and I think he’ll be there permanently.”

There are just certain people who change the lives of so many whom they come across and there is no doubt that West was one of those people. He is truly one of the great Lakers of all-time, but he was an even better person who will be missed by everyone who knew him.

Former Lakers coach Phil Jackson speaks to Jerry West’s impact

Jerry West’s impact went beyond the scope of just the Lakers and was truly felt throughout the NBA. Legendary Lakers coach Phil Jackson recently spoke on this calling West a promoter of the NBA.

Jackson lauded West’s abilities as a player, coach and general manager while calling him a ‘vibrant, dynamic force in the league.’ Jackson added that the NBA suffered a ‘big loss’ with West’s passing.

Have you subscribed to our YouTube channel? It’s the best way to watch player interviews, exclusive coverage from events, participate in live shows, and more!

You May Also Like

Lakers News: Xavier Henry Will Require Postseason Surgery On Wrist

[new_royalslider id=”132″] In the 117-107 loss to the Washington Wizards on Friday…

Pau Gasol Talks About Rookie Robert Sacre…Next to Robert Sacre

In one of the more amusing interview videos to surface in the…

D’Angelo Russell Voted 4th Most Likely To Have Breakout Season By NBA GMs

With an up-and-down rookie season behind him, as well as a new head coach, offensive system, and supporting cast, the pieces for Los Angeles Lakers guard D’Angelo Russell to make a huge leap this season are all there…

Lakers News: Section Of Figueroa Street Re-Named Kobe Bryant Blvd.

Los Angeles Lakers fans around the world continue to mourn the tragic loss of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna…