Chick Hearn Rumors
To celebrate the unveiling of a bronze statue of legendary Los Angeles Lakers and NBA Hall of Fame player Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal in Star Plaza at STAPLES Center, the Lakers and AEG will host Shaqtown, a street festival on March 24 to take place on Chick Hearn Court and Microsoft Square at L.A. LIVE. The festival will include a variety of interactive games including Fireball Alley, Block-A-Shaq and Plinko, a Hall of Fame Exhibit, specialty photo opportunities, a Ferris wheel, a mini Lakers basketball court and live deejay.
“(Dr. Buss) kind of opened up his entire business playbook to Magic, kind of took him in and was a son,” Worthy said. “My memories of Magic were of him always coming down from the front office before practice, having talked to (then Lakers executive) Bill Sharman, having talked to (longtime general manager) Jerry West, sometimes (play-by-play man) Chick Hearn. So he’s always been engaged, and he’s been a natural leader. He knows a lot of agents, knows a lot of players. Players will be interested in his business empire. There’s a lot of things that he brings to the table. He’s a very powerful asset in the room.”
I think the first two nights that the Lakers played in Los Angeles, we played against the Knicks both nights. We had crowds of around 4,000 the first night and 3,400 the second night, and everyone was a Knicks fan. I was saying to myself, “What do we have to do here to upstage the Dodgers and the Rams?” who were a big part of the sports culture in Los Angeles. The stories with Chick? I can’t even repeat them. They were so funny. He was a character and I loved his passion. He was as good as it gets, but he was like a player. He had a game-day routine. Chick would get to the Forum at 3:30 in the afternoon to get ready for that night’s game. It just showed you what a great professional he was.
But there, just behind the opponents’ bench, a stone’s throw from some weirdo in a cowboy suit, sits the regal Marge Hearn, widow of the late, great Chick. She’s almost 94 now, and as far as anyone can tell, just entering her prime. That’s right, amid this zaniness, we still have Marge, who kept her husband grounded during his record stint as the best announcer in basketball history, who got him to the airport, packed his bags and smiled gamely as he needled her on the air. “Marge could’ve made that shot” or “Marge couldn’t go to her left either.” “He was such a comic,” she says now. “He would rib me on the air, and people would say, ‘Why do you let him do that?’ I told them because I thought it was funny.” “I would challenge anybody on how many games they saw,” she says. “Because I saw them all.”