HoopsHype Jerry Buss rumors

February 21, 2013 Updates

"He made me the man I am today," Johnson said Tuesday night, a day after Buss died. "Forget just the basketball player, but the man that I am. I owe a lot to Dr. Buss. "I think the reason I own the Dodgers today is because of Dr. Buss and his expertise of giving me sound business advice and making sure I took care of my money and things of that nature." NBA.com

February 20, 2013 Updates

Here's a rundown of all the speakers/performers expected at Dr. Jerry Buss' memorial service on Thursday ... CBS2′s Jim Hill will be the emcee. The other expected speakers are: Timothy Leiweke - President and CEO of Anschutz Entertainment Group; Johnny Buss - Buss' oldest son; Frank Mariani - Dr. Buss’ long-time business partner); David Stern - NBA commissioner; Jerry West - former Lakers executive; Kareem Abdul-Jabbar - former Lakers center; Phil Jackson - former Lakers coach; Shaquille O’Neal - former Lakers center; Pau Gasol - Lakers forward; Pat Riley - former Lakers coach; Kobe Bryant - Lakers guard; Magic Johnson - former Lakers guard. Sulia

There was a time that you demanded a trade, what changed when you met with Dr. Buss during that time? Kobe Bryant: “Well we got on the same page. The thing that was important to me at the time is I was facing a tremendous amount of pressure to win a championship post-Shaq. I didn” want to be one of the players that went down in history as a player that didn’t win. During that transition period it was my impression that we were going to spend whatever it took to bring a team here that’s a championship level. We were actually doing the opposite so when he and I sat down ad talked I told him how I was feeling and he told me what his plan was. ‘This is how I plan to rebuild, this is the year that I believe it’s going to take us to get to that level, this is what’s best for the organization financially and then once I heard that I said, ‘I’m cool, let’s do this thing.’ I didn’t know what the heck was going on. It just seemed like they were just cutting cost and letting me run up and down, scoring all the points. After that meeting, we just were on the same page and it was history from there.” Sports Radio Interviews

On Buss increasing ticket prices and that leading to a stronger economic structure for the league: “It contributed to making it possible to change the economic model of the league. Because in 1987 or thereabouts, our entire arena infrastructure began to be rebuilt, starting I guess with the Palace at Auburn Hills. And then, in the last 30 years or so, every team has played in either a new, a rebuilt, or another new one. … And it would all be made possible by a change to the economics of the league. And really, the buildings became entertainment centers. They became entertainment palaces — video boards, enhanced lighting, restaurants and the like, suites. And the Forum of course was the precursor of most of that, and then Staples Center has taken it to the next level.” Sports Radio Interviews

The Lakers will wear "JB" patches on their jersey for the rest of the season in honor of Buss dying Monday from an unspecified form of cancer that affected his kidneys. Bryant remains appreciative of Buss' presence for reasons beyond bringing the Lakers 10 of their 16 championships since purchasing the team in 1979. Long Beach Press-Telegram

Q: On Dr. Buss having an influence in him staying with the Lakers: Bryant: Of course. I think in 2007 was really the big one. I had to make a choice and believing in him, which wasn’t very hard to do once I took a step back and see everything that he accomplished. I had a chance to sit down with him and we talked about what his vision was and his vision for rebuilding this team and rebuilding this team quickly. It was easy for me because I was a Lakers fan growing up, so I saw how many championships he’d been able to win and see how many times he was able to rebuild. It was a pretty easy call for me. Q: On his talk with Dr. Buss about rebuilding the team: Bryant: He went into a little bit of the salary cap, free agents and all this other stuff, which, his memory was pretty remarkable in terms of what he was able to remember, the space he had available, who was available and how he was going to put it all together. When somebody has that kind of detail, it’s pretty easy to roll with. Lakers.com

Q: On what he learned most from Dr. Buss: Bryant: To be patient, to be patient and not rush decisions. When you believe in something, you act despite what public opinion may be or what others and when public pressure sometimes can persuade people into making choices that might not be necessarily the best in the long run. He never did that. He always stuck to his guns and made his decisions what he felt was best for the organization, and that’s what I take from him. Lakers.com

Q: On if he has a particular memory or two of Dr. Buss: Gasol: We would always see him for the team picture. He was always a very joyful guy. The most time I spent with him alone was the time I went and visited him at the hospital. That was probably the most meaningful time I spent with him. We had great times when we won championships. Those magical moments were brief and are overwhelming and there are a lot of people around you. But I always appreciate those one-on-one times, even though it was under those circumstances. It’s a moment I’ll always have with me. Lakers.com

A memorial service for Los Angeles Lakers owner Jerry Buss will be held Thursday across from Staples Center. The team says the service at Nokia Theatre is for invited guests only and isn't open to the public. NBA.com

February 19, 2013 Updates

The Lakers will honor the memory of Dr. Jerry Buss by wearing a commemorative patch for the remainder of the 2012-13 season. In Lakers Purple and Gold, the patch will be two inches tall, and be placed on the right side of the player's jerseys above the Lakers logo. NBA.com

Before Tuesday's practice in El Segundo, Kobe Bryant addressed the media to discuss the passing of Dr. Jerry Buss. As one would expect from Kobe, his thoughts were interesting, introspective and smart. In particular, I found compelling the response when I asked what Bryant learned most from Buss after spending half his life around him. "To be patient. To not rush decisions. When you believe in something, you act, despite what public opinion may be. For others, public pressure sometimes can persuade people to making choices that aren't necessarily the best ones. He never did that. He always stuck to his guns and made decisions that he felt were best for the organization. Sulia

Any rumor missing? E-mail us at   hoopshype@hoopshype.com.