When Jerry West left the Lakers front office in 2000, it always seemed weird to me. I couldn’t grasp why someone would want to leave what was clearly the start of a dynasty. Of course later we would discover how much tension there actually was within the Lakers organization.
Jerry West has an autobiography coming out, ”West by West: My Charmed, Tormented Life”. In it he puts the issues on the table that caused him to leave Laker-dom, his problem with Phil Jackson and the distance between he and owner Jerry Buss:
”So one of the problems I had with Phil was this,” West writes. “His office was right near mine and when he would arrive in the morning, he would walk right past and never even bother to wave or duck his head in to say hello.
“Phil and I had no relationship,” West writes. “None. He didn’t want me around and had absolutely no respect for me–of that, I have no doubt.”
On the Kobe and Shaq factor, West said:
“It pained me to see how much of a struggle it was for them
me,” West writes, “how unwilling Kobe was to defer to Shaq in any way.”
West is now with his second team- The Golden State Warriors- since he left the Lakers. That team has new ownership, raw talent in Monta Ellis and Stephen Curry plus a new coach (former NBA player and ESPN commentator, Mark Jackson.) I wonder if there will be a need to add chapters from this challenge.
To read more excerpts, go HERE