While many Laker fans and NBA analysts are quickly losing faith in the purple and gold’s front office, two Lakers legends are still as confident as ever in the hierarchy that Dr. Jerry Buss left behind.
James Worthy and Byron Scott shared their thoughts on Jeanie and Jim Buss earlier this week while on Time Warner Cable SportsNet, and both of these legends from the Showtime era expect the Lakers to crawl out of this hole and get back to contending once again very soon.
“Yes, I do [have faith in the Lakers]. I was a witness of how Dr. Buss ran his business. I know how close he was to his family,” Worthy said. “I know he had Jeanie as an apprentice, Jim and John, I know he left them the formula, the playbook on how to do this, so I believe it’s in good hands.”
Dr. Buss died in 2013, though the legendary owner had established the Lakers’ hierarchy long ago.
Jeanie has been running the business side of things for years, while Jim has been working alongside general manager Mitch Kupchak since 1998.
That’s why Worthy feels confident about the Lakers bouncing back, and soon.
“They have that formula that’s worked ever since Dr. Buss purchased this team,” said Worthy, who won three NBA championships with the Lakers during the 80s. “We’ll go through a little short period of growing pains but I think they have the formula to get it done.”
Scott feels the same way as his Showtime teammate.
“Dr. Buss left [the Lakers] in great hands. He mentored those guys to understand what it is to be a Laker and how to win and be competitive and bring championships to Los Angeles,” Scott said. “So, without a doubt, the Laker brain trust is in good hands and this team will be back.”
Scott, who has been part of a number of losing teams during his career as a head coach in the Association, made a point to let Laker fans know that hitting a rough patch every now and again is inevitable in this league.
“I think the Laker fans have to understand a couple of things. Number one, there’s not a franchise in basketball that’s been on top as long as the Lakers have, so you’re going to go through some ups and downs. Injuries have obviously plagued this team this year, and you have to give them a pass on that, but as James said, this organization and the head of this organization, they know what winning is all about and they know what it takes to win,” said Scott, who was a key contributor during the Lakers’ championship runs during the mid-eighties. “They won’t be down long. Everybody’s looking at this as a big time down year – everybody in the NBA – but the Lakers are a team that’s always been very resilient and they will be back.”
It’s nice to hear Scott compliment the Lakers, but it’s even greater to have Worthy praise the team’s front office. Sure, he’s employed by the team and works for their flagship television station, though Big Game James is never afraid to speak his mind when he wants to get a point across to the rest of the fan base.
Seeing as these two legends have been around the likes of Jeanie and Jim for years, it should be comforting for Laker fans to know that these two greats have the upmost confidence in the purple and gold’s future.