NBA Countdown crew discussing Jerry West following his death Photo Credit: ABC

The sports world was struck with some unfortunate news regarding the passing of “The Logo” Jerry West at the age of 86. Ahead of Game 3 of the NBA Finals on Wednesday night, ESPN’s NBA Countdown crew offered their thoughts on the late NBA star.

It’s hard to overlook the impact West made on the current landscape of basketball over the course of his life. For over 60 years, West had his imprint all over some extremely successful NBA teams, first as a player and later as a front-office executive.

Naturally, that means that West made countless relationships with many different people in the basketball landscape throughout his life.

Two people who had a close relationship with West, former Golden State Warriors general manager Bob Myers and Los Angeles Clippers star Paul George, offered tributes for West on the NBA Countdown pregame show.

“The best thing that I can say was he was a friend,” said Myers. “He was my friend. And that’s what hurts me the most. When I was a young agent and a nobody, I told him I was going to come to Memphis to see one of my clients. He said ‘what time are you going to land Bob?’ I said, I don’t know, 2 or 3 at the Weston or something. He said no, you are going to stay at my house. He said he would pick me up from the airport. Nobody picks anybody up from the airport anymore.”

Myers later of course served as the general manager of the Warriors, working alongside West who was an executive board member of the organization. He went on to discuss how be grew to become great friends with West.

“You can’t imagine something more scary than being a young GM with Jerry West as your mentor. But the decency and the kindness and the grace of who he was, I will never forget. Give me the people who care too much in life. And Jerry embodied that.”

West also mentored Paul Goerge as a board member of the Clippers. So naturally, George offered his own thoughts about the former NBA Champion’s passing.

“Jerry was an amazing figure,” said George. “I looked at him as an NBA father. He welcomed me with open arms when I first came to the Clippers. Kind of laid the landscape of what it means to be here in L.A. and be a star here. Me being the biggest Kobe Bryant fan, he had a ton of stories for me to listen to. I love Jerry, I became very close with him. I’m grateful for his presence, he will be missed. A basketball staple. Condolences to his family.”

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver also made an appearance on NBA Countdown later in the show, discussing West’s impact on the game of basketball and calling him a “basketball genius”.

“I was listening to all of you earlier tell your stories about Jerry,” said Silver. “And I have similar stories. Everyone knows what a fierce competitor he was. I called him a basketball genius earlier. I think what gets lost sometimes is what a caring person he was. I think all of us have these stories of when we first got involved in the business. And there is the logo, Jerry West, and he learns your name right away and talks basketball with you like you’re an equal. He felt like a founding father of the league. It’s an enormous for all sports, not just basketball. I’ll miss him as a dear friend.”

Prior to the tip-off of Game 3, a moment of silence was also held in light of West’s passing.

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About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.