Dr. Jerry Buss, owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, dies at age 80 Laker fans at USD react to the news

By Alex Bullock

On Monday Feb. 18, Dr. Jerry Buss, owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, passed away at the age of 80. Buss purchased the team in 1979, and since then the Lakers have won 10 NBA Championships, the most by any team in that time period.

The Lakers are one of the world’s most famous sports franchises and have fans all over the globe. Many of those fans are students at USD.

Junior Justin Tam called Buss one of the greatest owners in sports history.

“Dr. Jerry Buss will be remembered as the architect of arguably the most successful team in NBA history,” said Tam.

Buss was responsible for orchestrating the creation of the exciting Lakers teams of the 1980s known as the Showtime Lakers. Lead by hall-of-famers Earvin “Magic” Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and James Worthy, the Lakers won five NBA titles and made the finals all but two years in that decade.

The remaining five titles during Buss’s time as owner came in the 2000s. Lead by the likes of Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Pau Gasol and legendary coach Phil Jackson, the Lakers regained their winning ways of the 1980s.

“The passing of Dr. Buss is truly a great loss,” said junior Camden Wicker. “I’ve been fortunate enough to witness five NBA titles from my favorite team and a lot of that can be credited to him. He’ll be extremely missed by Laker players and fans alike.”

Buss leaves a legacy behind him not only for the Lakers organization but for the NBA and the Southern California area as well.

“He is the architect of today’s NBA and paired entertainment, doing business and winning in a way that has yet to be repeated,” said senior Jonathan Gillie.

“Beyond that, he was a self-made man and Lakers fans will forever be grateful for all the great years and memories.”