You all know that I have a soft spot for Larry Bird, as a Celtics fan, however when it comes to sentimental value - Jerry West is my man. When Cherry first started out, Grayson and I busted our first box of Bowman and we hit an amazing Jerry West Patch auto (see below) and the love affair began. I love collecting his cards, and I'm happy to say that he's the ONLY Laker I like, and the ONLY Laker you'll ever see me collect!

Jerry "The Logo" West was born May 28, 1938 acquiring many other nicknames along the way, including 'Mr Clutch' and 'Zeke from Cabin Creek', synonymous with his "country" upbringing. It's hard to believe that many thought that this 'loner' kid from West Virginia would never make anything of himself, as a short recluse kid he used to just shoot hoops alone in the street. He was so small and frail in fact, he needed vitamin injections from his doctor at an early age. Clearly this worked, growing to a height of 6 ft 0 in, he then began to really shine on the court.

Following high school achievements of West Virginia Player of the Year and becoming the state's first high-school player to score more than 900 points in a season, he continued college basketball locally. West was drafted in the 1960 NBA Draft by the Minneapolis Lakers, shortly before the team was relocated to La La Land, playing with the likes of Elgin Baylor, Jim Krebs and Ray Felix.

In the years to come he was notable for his cool and calm delivery to the basket, the rivalry against the Celtics and being the only player from the losing team awarded with the NBA Finals MVP (1969). Jerry had to wait until 1972 for that elusive Championship ring beating the New York Knicks in Game 5.

West later went on to coach the LA Lakers and will forever be inscribed in the NBA history as the his silhouette serves as the current NBA logo.

 

 

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