Jerry West Said A Finals Matchup Between Lakers and Clippers Would Be The 'Ultimate Competition'

Melissa Rohlin

In an interview on The Dan Patrick Show, Jerry West was asked what he'd think of the Lakers and Clippers meeting in The Finals.

As the NBA discusses possible ways of resuming the season during the COVID-19 pandemic, one possibility that's being thrown around is a tournament-style postseason with the No. 1 through 16 seeds not separated by conference, which could setup a potential Finals meeting between Los Angeles' teams.  

“For me, that would be the ultimate competition," West said on The Dan Patrick Show. "I think in Los Angeles, they have so many Laker fans. My goodness. The enormous success that the Lakers have had over the years, they are a really good team now, two of the best players we’ve seen in a long time on one team. I think it would be incredible for the people in the west. I’m not sure how that would go over for the teams back east who want to see their respective teams get an opportunity to play."

West said he doubts the NBA will go that route, but he couldn't help but imagine how riveting that series would be. 

“That would be a situation where I think it would be unbelievably competitive, it would be compelling," he said. "I don’t know how many teams in the same city have competed for a championship in any sport, much less the NBA. It would make a compelling story, but, in all likelihood, I think you’re going to see things that will be a little bit more normal.”

West is currently a consultant for the Clippers. He played for the Lakers from 1960-1974 before coaching the team from 1976-1979, leading them to the playoffs three-straight seasons. He went on to work as a player-scout and then became the Lakers general manager during the 1982-83 season, leading them to six NBA championships. 

West, 82, added that if it were up to him, teams would play another nine or 10 regular season games to finish with 72 apiece, giving teams on the cusp of making the playoffs a chance to compete in the postseason

He also advocated for two bubble sites, one in Las Vegas for the Western Conference teams and another at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando for Eastern Conference teams. 

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