Jerry West Rumors
Jerry West, adviser to General Manager Bob Myers, had his eye on Durant for more than a year. He was charmed then and is over the moon now. “I was watching him work the other day, and I told him I don’t think I’ve ever seen anybody more professional,” West said. “He’s absolutely a joy to be around. He’s just so efficient. He does so much more than score points. In fact, I think he should probably shoot more.”
“I hated to see Bogut go,” West said. “He was our best post defender, and he was a big factor when he was healthy. But some of our younger players are filling in. Looney is one of our smartest players. He can rebound, he can pass, and he sees the game very well. And this rookie (Patrick McCaw from UNLV) may not look very strong, but that rascal comes in and makes an impact whenever he plays.
This week during The TK Show, a podcast hosted by San Jose Mercury News sports columnist Tim Kawakami, West took that a step further and said that if free agency had been around when he played he would not be the same Laker icon. “I remember years ago, if I had an opportunity to leave the Lakers I would have left, for one reason: because I did not like an owner that was not telling me the truth. It would have made no difference what they would have offered me, I would have left. It’s easy to say after the fact, but players have earned the right to go where they want to go.”
Even NBA commissioner Adam Silver vowed to fix the system that allowed a player of Durant’s caliber to join a team that just won 73 games and nearly a second straight title. That comment from Silver was definitely something that ground West’s gears. On The TK Show, West talked about comments from owners and commissioner Silver saying it’s unfair to the people involved in this signing and teams in a position in the future who may make a signing of that stature. He even said he called Silver and voiced his displeasure with those comments. “It’s sour grapes,” West said. “We signed Shaquille O’Neal and it wasn’t as big an uproar as this. Listen, the owners make the rules. They negotiate with the players. And for them to say something like that, to me it’s wrong on their part. The commissioner said something like that and I called him about it. I told him I didn’t think the comment was fair. It’s not fair to Kevin. It’s not fair to the Warriors. It’s not fair to any team going forward who will sign a free agent of this stature. “The players bargained for this. They have a chance to go play where they want to. I only wish I had that opportunity in my career and I’m sure a lot of other people felt the same way.”
Colangelo: I called a meeting in Chicago of former Olympic coaches going back to 1960; only two were unable to make it. So we had a great array of former coaches and Olympian basketball players going way back and current, including Michael Jordan, Larry Bird, Jerry West, I could go on and on. Tooley: Michael Jordan was there, Dean Smith, John Thompson, Lenny Wilkins, Larry Bird was there as a player, [Clyde] Drexler, Chris Mullin. Ford: Jerry West spoke very emotionally about how important [USA Basketball was to him]. He said, “The only jersey that gets hung in my house is my USA jersey. I couldn’t wait to go over and play the Russians.”
Draymond Green was arrested on Sunday, July 10. He will have a pre-trial conference on July 21, according to multiple reports. On Monday morning, Jerry West weighed in on Draymond’s situation. “Obviously it’s very disappointing,” West told KNBR 680. “He’s made a great name for himself right now. And he needs to understand he has a greater responsbility. Not only to — forget the team — he needs a responsibility to himself. He needs not to put himself into these situations.”