Jerome Alan West, better known as Jerry West is an American basketball executive and former player. West is currently the executive board member of the NBA team, Los Angeles Clippers. He is one of the most decorated basketball players and is considered one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA history. He spent 14 years in NBA with Los Angeles Lakers winning the NBA Championship once in 1972. He was named to NBA All-Star 14 times and All-NBA 12 times. He was the co-captain of the US basketball team that won a gold medal at the 1960 Olympics. Upon retirement, he has been honored with several accolades.
Following his playing career, he became the head coach of the Lakers in 1976 and general manager in 1982. As a Lakers general manager, he has won NBA Championships six times. He later won NBA Championships as a Golden State Warriors executive board member in 2015 and 2017.
What is Jerry West Famous For?
- Won NBA Executive of the Year in 1995 and 2004.
- Won NBA Championship as a Los Angeles Lakers point guard in 1972.
Where is Jerry West From?
Jerry West was born on 28 May 1938. His birth name is Jerome Alan West. His birth place is in Chelyan, West Virginia in the United States. He holds an American nationality. He was born to his father, Howard Stewart, and his mother, Cecil Sue West. He has five siblings.
Regarding his educational background, he attended East Bank High School from 1952 to 1956 where he played basketball. He became one of the outstanding athletes who led East Bank to a state championship. He was named All-State from 1953 to 1956, All-American in 1956, and was also named Virginia Player of the Year.
After graduating from East Bank High School in 1956, he received scholarship offers from over 60 universities. He eventually committed to West Virginia University. He led the Mountaineers to the 1959 NCAA Championship game and earned the NCAA Final Four Most Outstanding Player. He averaged 24.8 points per game and 13.3 rebounds in his collegiate career and holds 12 WVA all-time records. He was named Southern Conference Player of the Year in 1959 and 1960 and was also named Athlete of the Year.
Jerry West Career
- Jerry West was part of the US men’s basketball team that won gold at the 1959 Pan American Games.
- He was co-captain of the US men’s basketball team that won gold at the 1960 Olympics.
- After an outstanding collegiate career, he entered the 1960 NBA Draft.
- Minneapolis Lakers (shortly before the team relocated to Los Angeles) drafted West in the first round.
- West spent the entire 14 years of his professional career with the Lakers playing the guard position.
- He led the Lakers to nine NBA Finals, winning it once in 1972.
- He holds the NBA record for the highest points per game average in a playoff series with 46.3.
- He was named to NBA All-Star 14 times, All-NBA 12 times, and NBA All-Defensive 5 times.
- He was named NBA Finals MVP in 1969 and NBA All-Star Game MVP in 1972.
- He was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1979.
- He was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 1980.
- He was named to the NBA 35th Anniversary Team and NBA 75th Anniversary Team.
- He averaged 27 points, 5.8 rebounds, and 6.7 assists during his NBA playing career. He scored 25192 points, 6238 assists, and 5366 rebounds in 932 NBA games.
- He led the Lakers in scoring in seven seasons.
- Jerry West retired from his playing career in 1974.
- Following his retirement, he took over as head coach of the Lakers. He coached the Lakers for three years and led the team into the playoffs each year as well as the Western Conference Finals in 1977.
- He left his head coach position in 1979 and worked as a player scout for three years.
- He was named general manager of the Lakers before the 1982-83 season.
- Under him, the Lakers won six NBA Championships, five of which came in the 1980s, dubbed Showtime referring to the great 1980s Lakers dynasty.
- He became general manager of the Memphis Grizzlies in 2002.
- Under him, the Grizzlies won their first-ever playoff berths.
- He became an executive board member of the Golden State Warriors in 2011.
- Under him, the Warriors won their first NBA championship in 40 years in 2015. The Warriors won another NBA Championship in 2017.
- He became an executive board member of the Los Angeles Clippers in 2017.
- He was named NBA Executive of the Year in 1995 and 2004.
Who is Jerry West Wife?
Jerry West first married his college sweetheart Martha Jane Kane in April 1960. They share three sons, David, Mark, and Michael. They divorced in 1976.
West married Kristine “Karen” Bua in 1978. They share two sons, Ryan and Jonnie.
Jerry West stated to take the 2022 HBO docudrama series, Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty to the Supreme Court after he is portrayed as a temperamental, foul-mouthed executive prone to angry outbursts and mood swings in the series. West demanded a retraction from the network within two weeks for the “cruel” and “deliberately false” depiction. Jason Clarke played West in the series.
What is Jerry West Height?
Jerry West stands at the height of 1.91 m i.e. 6 feet and 3 inches tall. He has a body weight of around 175 lbs i.e. 79 kg. He has an average body build. His eye color is hazel and his hair color is greyish-white.
His sexual orientation is straight.
What is Jerry West Net Worth?
Jerry West is one of the most decorated basketball players in NBA history. A holder of several NBA records, he spent the entire 14 years playing career with the Los Angeles Lakers. He won an NBA Championship as a Lakers player in 1972. After retirement, he served as the head coach of the Lakers for three years later becoming the franchise’s general manager. He won six NBA Championships as a general manager of the Lakers. He later won two more NBA Championships as an executive board member of the Golden State Warriors. He is one of the greatest basketball players in NBA history. He made his fortune out of his playing career. After retirement, he was paid a handsome salary for his service as a basketball team executive.
Summing up, he has made his fortune through his basketball career, formerly as a player and later as a basketball executive. At present, his net worth is estimated at $50 million.
Did You Know?
- His father was a coal mine electrician.
- Growing up, he suffered physical abuse from his father.
- He used to sleep with a loaded shotgun under his bed out of fear that he might have to kill his abusive father in self-defense.
- The trauma of his brother, David’s death in action in the Korean War turned him into a shy and introverted boy.
- Due to his small and weak body, he was given numerous vitamin injections growing up and was kept apart from children’s sports.
- He is the Virginia state’s first high-school player to score more than 900 points in a season where he averaged 32.2 points per game.
- Until the East Bank High School closed in 1999, the school changed its name to “West Bank High School” every year on 24 March in honor of Jerry West.
- He was a member of WVU’s freshman squad that achieved a perfect record of 17 wins without a loss over the course of the 1956-56 season.
- His shirt number 44 is retired by West Virginia University (the first basketball number retired by WVU) and Los Angeles Lakers.
- He was drafted second overall in the 1960 NBA draft.
- He is the only player in NBA history to be named Finals MVP despite being on the losing team in the 1969 NBA Finals.
- It was reported in December 2020 that West and the LA Clippers were under investigation by the NBA following a lawsuit filed by John Wilkes against the LA Clippers over the recruitment of Kawhi Leonard to the team.
- He is nicknamed “Mr. Clutch” for his ability to make a big play in a cluth situation. His famous buzzer-beating 60-foot shot tied Game 3 of the 1970 NBA Finals against the New York Knicks.
- He is nicknamed “the Logo” in reference to his silhouette being incorporated into the NBA logo.
- NBA logo itself is modeled after the West silhouette.
- He is nicknamed “Mr. Outside” in reference to his perimeter play with the Lakers.
- He is nicknamed “Zeke from Cabin Creek” for the creek near his birthplace of Chelyan, West Virginia.
- ESPN voted him the third greatest shooting guard of all time in 2008.
- The city of Morgantown, West Virginia, and West Virginia Governor Cecil Underwood dedicated the road outside of the West Virginia University Coliseum, “Jerry West Boulevard” in 2000.
- A bronze statue of West created by sculptor Jamie Lester was unveiled outside of the WVU Coliseum in 2007.
- A West statue was unveiled outside Staples Center at the Star Plaza in Los Angeles, California in 2011.
- Then-president Donald Trump presented him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019.
- His memoir titled West by West: My Charmed, Tormented Life in collaboration with Jonathan Coleman was published in 2011.
Source: Gossip Gist