El legendario Jerry West demanded this Tuesday a rectification and an apology to HBO for his portrait in ‘Winning Time’the series that recreates from fiction the spectacular Los Angeles Lakers of the ‘Showtime’ in the 1980s. ESPN revealed Tuesday that West’s lawyers have sent a letter to HBO already Adam McKaydirector and producer on the series.
“The portrayal of NBA and Lakers icon Jerry West in ‘Winning Time’ is a fiction meant to be factual, a deliberately false characterization that has caused Jerry and his family great anguish”says the letter. Contrary to the baseless portrayal of the HBO series, Jerry had nothing but love and harmony with the Lakers and, in particular, with its owner, Jerry Bussduring a time when he put together one of the best teams in NBA history,” he adds.
The letter criticizes “Winning Time” for portraying West as “out of control” and as a “rage-aholic” (something like “rage addict”), an image that, in his opinion, “holds no value.” resemblance to the real person. “Jerry West was an integral part of the success of the Lakers and the NBA,” says the text, describing what HBO has done with his figure as a “farce” and lamenting that the series deviated from the book on which it was based. (“Showtime” by Jeff Pearlman).
In addition, the letter includes statements from other legendary players such as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and former directors such as Mitch Kupchak supporting that West did not behave as the series says. “Instead of exploring his problems with compassion for him as a way to better understand the man, they make him the cartoon Coyote to laugh at,” says Abdul-Jabbar.
“He never broke golf clubs, he never threw his trophy out the window. Of course, those actions create dramatic moments, but they reek of superficial exploitation of man rather than character exploration,” adds the six-time NBA champion and top player. scorer in the history of the League.
West, legend on and off the track
West played 14 seasons (1960-1974) for the Lakers. and became an absolute emblem of the purple and gold franchise. He only won one NBA ring (1972) as he ran into the almighty Boston Celtics de Bill Russell. But even so, he became one of the most remembered players in the League, so much so that his silhouette shaped the NBA logo (one of West’s nicknames is “The Logo”).
west was chosen 14 times for the All-Staraveraged 27 points throughout his career and is the Only player in NBA history who has been chosen MVP of the Finals (1969) without taking the ring that year. Still, his legacy as a player on the Lakers is almost as important as his footprint as an executive.
west was one of the great managers of the legendary Lakers of the 80sa brilliant period of the team known as ‘Showtime’ for the spectacular and explosive basketball they played with players like ‘Magic’ Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and who ended up taking the rings of 1980, 1982, 1985, 1987 and 1988.
He was in the offices of the Lakers until the year 2000, so he also built the framework for the three championships in a row (2000, 2001 and 2002) that the team led by Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant won.