NBA icon Jerry West dies aged 86 as tributes flood in for Los Angeles Lakers legend

Jerry West has died at the age of 86

Jerry West has died at the age of 86

GETTY
Stuart Ballard

By Stuart Ballard


Published: 12/06/2024

- 15:06

Updated: 12/06/2024

- 15:34

Jerry West was the inspiration behind the logo of the NBA.

NBA legend Jerry West has died at the age of 86, the Los Angeles Clippers announced in a statement.

West is heralded as one of the most important figures in NBA history and was the inspiration behind the league's logo.


He played 14 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers and reached the NBA Finals nine times in his career.

West won the NBA title as a player in 1972, playing alongside the likes of Elgin Baylor and Wilt Chamberlain.

Jerry West has died at the age of 86

Jerry West has died at the age of 86

GETTY

The Lakers icon finished his career having scored more than 25,000 points and was an All-Star every year he played in the league.

A few years before West retired in 1969, the NBA created its logo that still exists today based off an image of the former point guard during his playing days.

West's influence on the league continued after his playing career ended though as he stepped into an executive role with the Lakers for 21 years.

He was seen as instrumental in the Lakers dynasty of the 1980s as they clinched five championship rings.

West helped rebuild the Lakers in the 1990s and one of his best moves as general manager came in 1996 when he traded to secure the draft rights for Kobe Bryant.

He left the Lakers in 2000 before a five-year stint with the Memphis Grizzlies before taking up an executive position with the Golden State Warriors.

West helped oversee the Warriors' first championship title in 40 years in 2015 and he won his eighth as a team executive two years later.

He left to join the Clippers as an advisor in 2017 and was part of the core group who helped recruit Kawhi Leonard and Paul George.

Jerry West was in the inspiration behind the NBA logo

Jerry West was in the inspiration behind the NBA logo

GETTY

Tributes soon began to flood social media following news of West's passing.

West Virginia University Basketball posted: "West Virginia University mourns the passing of the legendary Jerry West, an iconic figure in basketball history. Forever a Mountaineer."

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Jerry West worked in the Lakers' office for 21 years

Jerry West worked in the Lakers' office for 21 years

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The Clippers' message read: "Jerry West, the personification of basketball excellence and a friend to all who knew him, passed away peacefully this morning at the age of 86. His wife, Karen, was by his side."

The LA Dodgers wrote: "The Dodgers mourn the passing of NBA Hall of Famer and Lakers legend Jerry West, an indelible figure on the Los Angeles sports landscape for more than 60 years. We send our most sincere condolences to his family and friends."

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