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Lakers Sign Jerry West

September 21, 2010 |  6:43 am

Sept. 21, 1960, Jerry West

Sept. 21, 1960: The Lakers signed rookie Jerry West to a two-year contract.

West played 14 seasons for the Lakers, winning one championship in a remarkable career that helped make basketball a marquee sport in L.A. He might have had a better career after retiring as a player. He had a short stay as the Lakers' coach but made a lasting mark as the team's general manager. West stole Kobe Bryant in a draft-day trade and signed Shaquille O'Neal as a free agent.

The Times speculated that West signed for about $12,000 a year.

Meanwhile, tickets were going fast for the Lakers' preseason appearance the following month against the Boston Celtics in Orange County. But this was long before the Pond was built so the game was scheduled for Anaheim High School.

The Times ran a short story announcing that more than half of the reserved seats had already been sold. Wonder how long it would take the teams to sell out a high school gym today.

--Keith Thursby

 Sept. 21, 1960, Jerry West