I'm deeply saddened over da loss of the great Dr. Jerry Buss. He was a dear friend, mentor,and brilliant business mind thank u 4 8 gr8 yrs
Earvin Magic Johnson ‏@MagicJohnson
My thoughts and prayers are with the family & friends of Dr. Jerry Buss. He was a great man and an incredible friend.
Kareem Rush ‏@KareemRush
RIP DR BUSS
Farewell to Dr. Jerry Buss
Posted by Mark Madsen on 18/02/2013
I was sitting here in the Stanford Mens basketball office preparing for a coaches meeting when our Video Coordinator shared with me the news: Dr. Jerry Buss had just died of cancer in Los Angeles.
I had the great privilege of playing for Dr. Buss’ Lakers team from 2001-2003 and cannot say enough about the first class nature of the organization or of the loyalty of Dr. Buss. I will never forget after I had a major wrist surgery after my first year in Los Angeles Jerry Buss called me the next day on the phone. Jerry had a great way with people. He called to wish me a speedy recovery and then said, “At first I thought you had the surgery in June so you could get out of playing in the summer league.” We both laughed. I could barely catch or pass the ball with my left hand that first season. And in the triangle offense Phil Jackson literally had us practice left handed passes throughout the year in order to run the offense properly. But Dr. Buss’ comment did two things. It made me laugh (which I needed the day after surgery) and it made me also realize that he did care very much about role players competing in the summer league at Long Beach State. (Which I did the next year). He built his teams around superstars, but he cared about every single person on the team all the way down to the last man.
Another memory of Dr. Buss happened during the playoffs of my first year in LA. Rick Fox always planned a dinner together with the team at a happening location in the greater Los Angeles area which nearly almost had perfect attendance of the team. One time Rick planned a get together and an evening out in the Hollywood Area. I think I arrived at about 9pm and walked in and one of the first people I saw was Dr. Buss. He was there with a group of his friends enjoying the evening and I felt nervous because typically the dinners/evening were more of a players only event. I didn’t really know what to say to our owner. He just broke the ice and called me over, introduced me to his friends and made me feel 100% comfortable despite him being the owner of the World championship team.
The thing that sticks out to me most is the loyalty of Dr. Buss. Of all the organizations I’ve ever been part of whether a professional team, or any other entity, I have never seen more loyalty than with the Lakers. While Dr. Buss was owner, there were countless people who had been with the team for 25 years or more. From Bill Bertka (longtime coach), to Gary Vitti (Head Trainer), to our equipment manager Rudy Garciduenas, Jerry Buss had the philosophy, “If someone is doing a good job I am going to stick with them.” In an era when consultants (often rightfully so), need to come in and “clean house,” Jerry Buss showed us that there are other ways to do business that can also yield amazing results.
I just read the LA Times article talking about how Jerry Buss built the Lakers, his family life, and his career. I am grateful for the opportunity that he gave me and for the 3 great years with the Lakers. I wish all the best to the entire Buss Family during this difficult time.
Pat Riley on Jerry Buss: “A True Giant”
Pat Riley released a statement through the Heat.
“Today, in the world of sports, we have lost a true giant. Jerry Buss was more than just an owner. He was one of the great innovators that any sport has ever encountered. He was a true visionary and it was obvious with the Lakers in the 80’s that ‘Showtime’ was more than just Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. It was really the vision of a man who saw something that connected with a community. I was privileged to be part of that for 10 years and even more grateful for the friendship that has lasted all these many years. I have always come to realize that if it weren’t for Dr. Buss, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I owe my start in professional coaching to him, and I will always hold him and his memory in the highest of regards. Chris and I truly love Jerry Buss. He was a great friend and will be missed.”
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar @kaj33
My condolences to the Buss family for their loss. Visit https://www.facebook.com/kaj for my full thoughts @Lakers @LakersNation #Lakers
Today the world lost a visionary and one of the most successful sports figures of all time. But today I lost a friend and mentor.
He forever changed my life. May he rest in peace and my prayers are with his family that he loved so much. #RIPDrBuss
Sasha Vujacic @SashaVujacic
Today we lost a very special man the legendary, Dr. Jerry Buss. I am thankful to have had the chance to meet him and will always remember him as the best owner any team could ask for. I am saddened to learn the news of his passing-he left us much too soon. My prayers go out to his family and I pray that he may rest in peace. He will live on forever in my heart.
Joe Smith @JoeBeast95
Growing up a @Lakers fan & knowing the talent they had every year, 2 being drafted & seeing the business side. #DrBussAWinner #Yessiirr...
Edited by LALakersFan4Life, February 18, 2013 - 05:51 PM.