The Los Angeles Lakers have no shortage of famous fans from movie stars to high-profile athletes and musicians frequently being seen courtside on a nightly basis.
The Great Western Forum in Inglewood was a hub for celebrities during the ’80s and ’90s. After the team moved to Downtown Los Angeles in 1999, all the celebrities started showing up at the Staples Center keeping the tradition going.
One of the most famous and dedicated Lakers fans is none other than Jack Nicholson. Not only does Jack frequent the games in Los Angeles, but he’s started getting his famous friends involved like rocker Tom Petty.
According to Petty, Nicholson is the main reason for The Heartbreakers’ frontman being a die-hard fan of the purple and gold via Contact Music:
Tom Petty has become a die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan – thanks to Jack Nicholson.
The movie star, who is one of the basketball team’s most avid celebrity fans, started giving Petty his courtside seats to games whenever he couldn’t make tip-off, and the rocker, who had never been interested in sports, suddenly found himself in love with the game.
With the Lakers coming off the worst season in franchise history, finishing the year with a 27-55 record, the fandom of famous supporters like Petty and Nicholson will be tested during the 2014-15 NBA season.
Last season, Nicholson was seen at a Los Angeles Clippers playoff game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. It was probably the first time Jack has ever had to actually look at his ticket to go to a game at Staples.
Lakers fans were livid that Nicholson showed up to watch the rival Clippers, but there’s no doubting his dedication to the purple and gold moving forward. Nicholson has stuck by the team through good times and bad. Petty might be the next famous die-hard fan to follow in Jack’s footsteps.