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Jerry West Statue to be Unveiled at Staples Center

By Eric Richardson
Published: Wednesday, February 16, 2011, at 01:56PM
Jerry West Statue Eric Richardson

A covered-up statue of Laker great Jerry West stands outside Staples Center one day before its unveiling.

The man known as "Mr. Clutch" during his playing days will get a statue outside Staples Center on Thursday.

Jerry West, who spent 40 years in the Lakers organization as a player, coach and general manager, will be the guest of honor at a 5pm ceremony to unveil the 14-foot bronze statue. West won just one championship as a player, but presided over seven as manager in the 1980s and 1990s.

He was also responsible for acquiring Kobe Bryant, hiring coach Phil Jackson, and trading for center Shaquille O'Neal, building the nucleus for the team that would bring Staples Center a three-peat from 2000 to 2002.

West's image is famously the centerpiece of the NBA logo, but the status outside Staples Center will show a quite different pose. The Daily News' Tom Hoffarth caught a glimpse of the 1500-pound piece yesterday afternoon, which shows West driving to the basket, ball in his left hand.

The statue will be the fifth for Staples Center's Star Plaza, joining Magic Johnson, Chick Hearn, Wayne Gretzky and Oscar De La Hoya. The ceremony will get underway at 5pm, with the unveiling occurring at roughly 6pm. Fox Sports Net will broadcast the ceremony live on its website.

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