Jerry West’s Cause of Death: Know More Here

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After his time as a player, he spent three seasons as the Lakers’ coach, starting in 1976, before turning into a scout and joining the team’s front office.

During his tenure as the Lakers’ leader, West assisted in two team rebuilding efforts: the first took place in the mid-1990s with Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant, and the second took place during the franchise’s “Showtime” heyday in the 1980s with Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and James Worthy, among others.

Later on, he assumed managerial positions with the Clippers, Golden State Warriors, and Memphis Grizzlies. Then-President Donald Trump gave him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019.

“I am so deeply saddened at the news of Jerry’s passing,” Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan said, via his representative. “He was truly a friend and a mentor. Like an older brother to me.

“I valued his friendship and knowledge. I always wished I could’ve played against him as a competitor, but the more I came to know him, I wish I had been his teammate.

“I admired his basketball insights, and he and I shared many similarities in how we approached the game. He will be forever missed. My condolences to his wife Karen and his sons. Rest in peace, Logo.”

Johnson, who played for the Lakers for 13 seasonsposted to X Wednesday afternoon, “Today is a sad day for basketball fans.”

“Jerry West was more than a general manager, he was a great friend and confidante. He was there in my highest moments, winning five NBA Championships, and in my lowest moment when I announced my HIV diagnosis and we cried together for hours in his office,” Johnson wrote.

“Beyond his basketball accolades as a basketball player and NBA executive, Jerry West was a great man, a leader of men, fiercely loved his family and friends, and despite holding jobs with other franchises, he was a Lakers fan for life,” he added. “Laker Nation, the only reason we have 17 NBA championships is because of Jerry West and his expertise drafting players, trading for players, and hiring the right coaches.”

Pat Riley, West’s former coworker and teammate, also sent his condolences:

“I loved Jerry West! We loved being Lakers together; it was sacred ground. We grew in life with each other and shared the best and worst of times,” Riley said in a statement Wednesday. “We can only hope there is someone we meet during a crucial time in our lives that will change you in ways you could dream about. Jerry was that person for me.”

“Jerry kicked down that coaching door for me and said, you can do this, but it has to be now. He knew, and then he let me coach. I thank him forever and always for giving me that opportunity,” he continued, calling West “smart, committed, opinionated, fearless, generous, ultra-competitive, (and) stubborn, but with great grace.”

‘The Logo’

One of the most well-known players in NBA history, West’s silhouette during a Lakers game is renowned for serving as the model for the NBA’s logo, earning him the moniker “The Logo.”

Alan Siegel, the renowned designer who oversaw Major League Baseball’s logo design, was commissioned by the NBA in 1969 to create a new emblem for the league.

As a West fan, Siegel was inspired by a picture of the Lakers guard’s flawless dribbling form. Siegel told CNN Sport, “This is the easiest job I’ve ever had.”

While Siegel has no trouble acknowledging that West served as the inspiration for the NBA logo, the NBA as an organization is a quite different story. The league did not reply to calls for information and has never openly confirmed that West is included in the logo.

In defence of the NBA, however, Siegel acknowledges that he never disclosed to any NBA employee that the design was based on West and that it was never his intention for it to be associated with the 1972 NBA champion.

West’s influence on basketball for a long period was far-reaching, with broadcaster Stephen A. Smith saying: “He was relevant to the game of basketball literally from the ’60s until he passed away in his sleep last night.”

Clippers owner Steve Ballmer called West a “confidant, an advisor and a friend.”

“Connie, my wife, called him my ‘basketball dad.’ He was my basketball sage: wise, loyal and so much fun,” Ballmer said in a statement.

“If you were in his presence, you felt his competitiveness and his drive. He cared about everything and everyone. From the first day I met Jerry seven years ago, he inspired me with his intellect, honesty and enthusiasm. He never stopped. I spent a lot of time with him, some of the best times of my life. He always lent an ear, and he always had a quip. He always left me laughing. I will miss him.”

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