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  • Writer's pictureJimmy Rex

We Lost A Legend Today...




I woke up today to the news that NBA logo and legend Jerry West had passed away. One of the most important and iconic men to ever play the sport of basketball.


Just passing a little bit more to me than I ever would have thought. Last year, I had the opportunity to do a podcast with him while I was out in LA.


My podcast Director had no idea who he was, meanwhile, I was in awe just to be in his presence. That same day I boxed with Mike Tysen, did a podcast interview with Johnny Manziel and did podcast with five other Hall of Fame athletes.


Jerry West was different than all of the rest. I want to tell the story because it shows who he was. We were supposed to do the podcast around 6:00 PM. He was showing up for a black tie dinner event and charity gala. The event was starting around 6:30 so 6:30 rolled around. We started to pack up our stuff assuming it wasn’t going to happen.


Just got a call from my friend Dana that was setting it up and he told me that Jerry was ready to do the interview. We rushed back up to get everything set up five minutes later this NBA legend was standing there ready to do the podcast.


The first thing I said was, I don’t want you to be late for the event so we can make this pretty quick. He replied back, “I don’t give a shit about those people, they all just want a fucking photo anyways. Take however long the fuck you want!”


I forgot to mention that he could be quite the sailor when it came to his language. For the next 45 minutes, he proceeded to give me his full attention and we had a great podcast.


As soon as it ended I told him thanks and we began to leave the room. He asked to use the bathroom and when he came back he sat down and went on a 20 minute rant about the Clippers and the lazy ass players that he needed to get rid of. He also talked about how pathetically soft the modern players were.


Named several by name. I was in heaven. This guy was completely raw and unscripted and giving me the opportunity of a lifetime.


We finally left, showing up 45 minutes late to the black tie event, and ironically I ran into Bill Walton on my way to the bathroom. I just wanted a picture knowing we were late but he too took 10 minutes and just started telling me stories. I’ve never felt so lucky as I did in that hour with those 2 giants.


The fact that they both passed away knowing the last few weeks has me feeling even luckier. I don't know where men like that go after they die but I know it’s a beautiful place. Two men that I would have never understood earlier in my life. Bill being one of the most eccentric yet beautiful humans this planet has ever known. And Jerry acting like the pissed off neighbor 24/7 yet being so generous with his time and knowledge to a guy he’d never known.


Thank you. And wherever you are, that’s a conversation I will gladly come sit in on one day with the both of you.

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