Found February 18, 2013 on Laker Nation:

Photo Credit: Gettu Images Lakers owner Jerry Buss passed away this morning at the age of 80. Buss had been hospitalized for cancer for much of the past 18 months, according to the Lakers. His assistant, Bob Steiner, told the Associated Press that Dr. Buss ultimately died of kidney failure at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Jerry Buss completed his Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Southern California at the age of 24. He also taught at USC in the chemistry department. His first investment was $1,000 in a West L.A. apartment building in order to provide income so that he could continue to teach. Dr. Buss’s success in real estate had him commit to it full-time. In 1979, Dr. Buss purchased the Lakers, the L.A. Kings, and the Forum from Jack Kent Cooke for $67.5 million. The Lakers drafted Magic Johnson the same year. They won 60 games in the 1979-80 NBA season and went on to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers in the NBA Finals. The Showtime era was born. The Lakers new style of play fit perfectly with Dr. Buss’s efforts for the team to go hand in hand with the city they played in. “One of the first things I tried to do when I bought the team was to make it an identification for this city, like Motown in Detroit,” Dr. Buss told the Los Angeles Times in 2008. “I try to keep that identification alive. I’m a real Angeleno. I want us to be part of the community.” His first move to improve showmanship in the NBA was the formation of the Laker Girls in 1979. “I thought the game itself was fantastic, but the ambiance was really kind of dead. It was quiet and boring, and so I thought what I’d like to do is spice it up with having some dancers,” he said. He also brought in a live band to play during games. Much like the Staples Center today, the Forum would be filled with stars the likes of Jack Nicholson. But Dr. Buss made sure his team was also full of stars on the court. He signed Magic Johnson to a 25-year $25 million contract in 1981. The Lakers drafted James Worthy and Mychal Thomson with the first overall picks in 1982 and 1987, respectively. The Showtime Lakers brought five championships to L.A. Photo Credit: Associated Press The Lakers signed Shaquille O’neal to a seven-year $121 million contract in 1996. The same year, Dr. Buss took a chance on a 17-year-old kid out of high school, trading his starting center to acquire Kobe Bryant from the Charlotte Hornets. “He’s meant everything to me in my career in terms of taking a risk on a 17-year-old kid coming out of high school and then believing in me my entire career,” Bryant told reporters during All-Star weekend. In 1999, the Lakers also brought on Phil Jackson to coach the team. The duo of Bryant and O’Neal won a championship in Jackson’s first year, followed by two more. After O’Neal’s departure in 2004, the Lakers missed the playoffs in 2005 and were eliminated in the first round the following two years. But the Lakers traded for Pau Gasol in 2008 and made their way back to the NBA Finals three straight years, winning two. During Dr. Buss’s reign as owner of one of the winningest franchises in sports, the Lakers made the Finals 16 times in 33 seasons, winning 10 championships. He never shied away from spending money if it meant his team would win. According to J.A. Adande, in 2002, before the Lakers beat the Nets in the Finals, Buss wanted to cut payroll to avoid paying the luxury tax. “Then they beat the Nets in the Finals, and at a victory party afterward a giddy Buss came up to me and said, ‘I’ve got a secret for you: We’re going way over the tax! I love winning!’” writes Adande. The Lakers all-star lineup this year places them as the second most valuable team in the NBA at $1 billion, according to Forbes magazine. Dr. Buss was inducted to the NBA Hall of Fame in 2010. “These men put their hands together, their souls together, and brought me with them. And I thank each and every one of them from the bottom of my heart,” Buss said about his players during a speech. The Buss family released the following statement: “We not only have lost our cherished father, but a beloved man of our community and a person respected by the world basketball community […] It was our father’s often stated desire and expectation that the Lakers remain in the Buss family. The Lakers have been our lives as well and we will honor his wish and do everything in our power to continue his unparalleled legacy.” The post Jerry Buss Leaves Behind Lasting Legacy appeared first on Laker Nation.


The 25 greatest Lakers from the Jerry Buss era

Dr. Jerry Buss (Jan. 27, 1933 - Feb. 18, 2013) was the greatest owner in NBA history. In fact, the chemist and card player was arguably the best...

Lakers Will Wear “JB” Patch On Jerseys To Commemorate Jerry Buss

The Lakers announced Tuesday that they will wear “JB” patches on their jerseys for the remainder of the 2012-13 season to honor legendary Lakers owner, Jerry Buss, who passed away Monday at the age of 80. According to Lakers: The Lakers will honor the memory of Dr. Jerry Buss by wearing a commemorative patch for the remainder of the 2012-13 season. In Lakers Purple and Gold,...

Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss has passed away at age 79

Sad news for Laker nation today. The Lakers majority owner, Dr. Jerry Buss has passed away at 79. Dr. Buss has been hospitalized for several months battling cancer. Buss set the standard of the NBA has we know it. Purchasing the Lakers franchise along with the Forum and the  NHL’s Kings in 1979 from Jack Kent Cooke for $67.5 million. Dr. Buss made his fortune in real estate but...

Lakers will wear jersey patch in honor of Buss

Via Yahoo Sports: When the Los Angeles Lakers take the court on Wednesday night to play their longtime rivals, the Boston Celtics, in their first game after the death of Dr. Jerry Buss, they'll do so wearing special jersey patches honoring the late legendary owner. The two-inch-tall circular patch, which the team revealed Tuesday, features Buss' initials in gold with white...

DEVELOPING: Jerry Buss Dies At 79

According to the LA Times, long-time Los Angeles Lakers owner Jerry Buss has died at the age of 79... He had been receiving treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles for an "undisclosed form of cancer" in the middle of last week. From Mike Bresnahan's article last week, he discloses Buss' recent medical problems: He underwent an undisclosed...

Ex-King Simmer remembers the late Buss

CALGARY, Canada Although Jerry Buss sold the Kings in the 1980s to focus on his ownership of the Lakers, the news of his death this week struck a chord in the hockey world. Charlie Simmer, who was a member of the Kings famed Triple Crown line and is now an analyst on Calgary Flames TV broadcasts, said he was saddened to hear of Buss passing and offered his condolences to the Buss...

Lakers owner Jerry Buss dies

Lakers owner Jerry Buss has died after a battle with cancer.

Jerry Buss Passes Away At 79

Jerry Buss had been hospitalized with an undiagnosed form of cancer.

Lakers' owner Jerry Buss dies

In the world of sports, there are two owners synonymous with success.  And both are gone now.  George Steinbrener of the New York Yankees had a win-at-all-costs mentality.  He would spend a ton and ruthlessly cut players.  Jerry Buss was a more civilized version of that, but with just as much success.  Maybe more.Yesterday, Buss died at the age of 80.  He was battling cancer...

Dennis Rodman Breaks Down Trying to Talk About Late Lakers Owner Jerry Buss (Video)

NBA Hall of Famer Dennis Rodman spent one of his 14 NBA seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers. That season was 1998-99, and he only played 23 games that year. That doesn’t mean, however, that the enigmatic superstar didn’t get close with Lakers owner Jerry Buss. So you could imagine Rodman was pretty sad when the news came that Buss had passed away Monday. Coincidentally, Rodman...

Jerry Buss, Longtime Owner of Lakers, Dies at 80 After Battle With Cancer

LOS ANGELES — Jerry Buss, the Los Angeles Lakers’ playboy owner who shepherded the NBA franchise to 10 championships from the 1980s’ Showtime dynasty to the Kobe Bryant era, died Monday, his assistant said. Buss died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, said Bob Steiner, his assistant. He was 80. He had been hospitalized for cancer, but the immediate cause of death...

Preview: Celtics vs. Lakers

It's anybody's guest why the Lakers (25-29) have yet to find that motivation to go out and lay everything on the floor to help themselves win games. The passing of the legendary Dr. Jerry Buss Monday morning could be that push they need to make a historical run in the remaining 28 games to make the playoffs. Laker fans are optimistic that their team will answer the bell now...
Lakers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.