This should probably be a “National Day of Mourning”: The NBA has lost its LOGO with Lakers’ guard Jerry West gone at age 86(He averaged 27.0 points, 6.7 assists and 5.8 rebounds per game across 932 NBA regular-season contests)

NBA legend Jerry West passes away at 86
from Hoops Rumors, with Luke Adams, and from

NBA Hall of Famer Jerry West has died at age 86, the Clippers announced Wednesday. According to the team, he passed away “peacefully” on Wednesday morning with his wife Karen at his side.
(With the LA Lakers Jerry West was there with Elgin Baylor, Wilt Chamberlain, Happy Hairston, Gail Goodrich, Jim McMillan and many other greats….You had to see it to believe, but that backcourt of Jerry West and Gail Goodrich in Lakers primetime, could not be matched for its scoring ability.)

Few individuals have had a greater impact on the NBA than West, who played 14 seasons for the Lakers from 1960-1974, earning All-Star honors in all 14 years.

West also made 12 All-NBA teams and five All-Defensive squads, winning a championship, an NBA Finals MVP Award and an All-Star MVP Award while leading the league in points per game in one season and assists per game in another.

He averaged 27.0 points, 6.7 assists and 5.8 rebounds per game across 932 regular-season contests and was part of the NBA’s 50th and 75th-anniversary teams.

West’s contributions as a player were enough to earn him a spot in the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, but his legacy extends far beyond that. His silhouette serves as the basis for the NBA’s logo. After a brief stint as the Lakers head coach from 1976-1979, he enjoyed a long and successful career as a front-office executive for multiple organizations.

West, who transitioned into a scouting role with the Lakers in 1979, was named L.A.’s general manager in 1982 and served as the architect of a team that made it to the NBA Finals eight times and won four titles during his tenure from 1982-2000.

Los Angeles had a 972-472 (.673) record in the regular season and a 140-90 (.609) mark in the playoffs under West’s stewardship. It also won championships in each of the two years following his departure.

Following his long run with the Lakers, West became the Grizzlies general manager in 2002, a year after the team had made the move from Vancouver to Memphis. Before West’s arrival, the Grizzlies had never won more than 23 games in a season. But he helped turn the franchise around, leading Memphis to its first three playoff appearances from 2004-06 and claiming his second Executive of the Year Award in 2004.

West retired as a lead basketball decision-maker in 2007. He later served as a consultant with the Warriors, winning two more titles in 2015 and 2017, and with the Clippers beginning in 2017.

In addition to being inducted into the Hall of Fame as a player, West was enshrined as a member of the 1960 U.S. Olympic team that won gold in Rome and was elected to the Hall of Fame a third time in 2024 for his work as an executive. That enshrinement ceremony will take place later this year.

Condolences go out to West’s family and friends, as well as all those in the basketball world affected by this tremendous loss to the sport.

**********He was a two-time All-American at West Virginia, where he averaged 24.8 points per game and helped the Mountaineers to the 1959 NCAA championship game, being named Final Four Most Outstanding Player despite a loss in the final to Cal. West also teamed with Oscar Robertson to lead the U.S. to a gold medal at the 1960 Rome Olympics.**********

More on Jerry West from Wikipedia:
West was born into a poor household in Chelyan, West Virginia, on May 28, 1938. He was the fifth of six children of Cecil Sue West, a housewife, and Howard Stewart West, a coal mine electrician. West’s father physically abused him, and West has stated that for a time he slept with a loaded shotgun under his bed out of fear that he might have to kill his father in self-defense.

West was an outgoing and aggressive child in his youth. However, in 1951 his older brother, David, was killed in action in the Korean War, and the trauma turned West into a shy and introverted boy. He was so small, frail, and weak that he needed many vitamin injections from his doctor and was kept apart from children’s sports, to prevent him from getting seriously injured. Growing up, West spent his days hunting and fishing, but his main activity was shooting at a basketball hoop that a neighbor had nailed to his storage shed. West spent days shooting baskets from every possible angle, ignoring mud and snow in the backyard, as well as his mother’s whippings when he came home hours late for dinner.

West attended East Bank High School in East Bank, West Virginia from 1952 to 1956. During his first year, he was benched by his coach Duke Shaver due to his lack of height. Shaver emphasized the importance of conditioning and defense, which were lessons that the teenager appreciated. West soon became the captain of the freshman team, and during the summer of 1953 he grew to 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m). West eventually became the team’s starting small forward, and he quickly established himself as one of the finest West Virginia high school players of his generation. He was named All-State from 1953 to 1956, then All-American in 1956 when he was West Virginia Player of the Year, becoming the state’s first high-school player to score more than 900 points in a season, with an average of 32.2 points per game. West’s mid-range jump shot became his trademark and he often used it to score while under pressure from opposing defenses. West led East Bank to a state championship on March 24 that year, prompting East Bank High School to change its name to “West Bank High School” every year on March 24 in honor of their basketball prodigy. This practice remained in effect until the school closed in 1999.