Dr. Jerry Buss, long-time owner of the Los Angeles Lakers, is currently fighting cancer at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. It has been widely reported throughout the day, specifically starting from Radaronline.com, but now multiple sources linked to the organization have come forward. The Lakers organization, and the Buss family, have not made an official statement. Kevin Ding of the OC Register revealed that the Register has had knowledge of this for some time, but did not release details out of respect for the Buss family.
Buss' cancer was learned previously by the Register but not published out of respect for the Buss family's wishes. - Kevin Ding, OC Register
In August of 2012 Jerry Buss underwent surgery in which no details were revealed. During the Lakers 2012-2013 season he has not attended a game due to health concerns. Sadly, it appears he has been battling cancer, and is currently in the intensive care unit. The L.A. Times reports that several Lakers figures have visited the good Doctor Buss since his hospitalization.
Jerry Buss revolutionized basketball with his insistence on creating a more entertaining product. In turn, he created the "Showtime" Lakers. His desire to merge Hollywood and the hardwood made the Lakers one of the most renown sports franchises in the world with the larger than life presentation at the Great Western Forum, winning tradition, and the celebrities that, to this day, the team still attracts.
His legacy will forever be a part of not only the Lakers franchise, but the National Basketball Association, and fans of the purple and gold worldwide. Dr. Buss was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame class of 2010. In his speech he claimed he was "happier than anyone" to make the hall of fame and called his purchase of the Lakers a "dream come true".
Over the 34 years Jerry Buss has owned the Lakers he has seen a plethora of talent and personalities as a part of the Lakers franchise, and to list just a few: Chick Hearn, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, James Worthy, Michael Cooper, Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O'Neal, and Pau Gasol.
The news of Jerry Buss battling cancer is unexpected to say the least. Since 1979 there was always the figure of Jerry Buss to guide the Lakers. Through thick and thin, the good and bad, the vision of basketball from Jerry Buss has always been something to place hope within. Like Chick Hearn calling a basketball game, there has been a level of comfort knowing the man who helped construct one of the most incredible sports franchises of all time was still there. A franchise that has missed the playoffs only twice since he has taken ownership.
A man who loves being larger than life, Jerry Buss has been able to be just that by bringing his taste for Hollywood, and passion for basketball, together as the steward of the Los Angeles Lakers. His impact on basketball, and the city of Los Angeles, is undeniable.
Our thoughts are with Jerry Buss and his friends and family. Please, feel free to leave your thoughts below, but we ask that you keep it respectful. Our community here is for Lakers fans, by Lakers fans, and so please keep all speculation on his current condition out of the discussion. We will keep everybody updated on the status of one of the greatest franchise owners of all time: The man who brought Showtime to life-- Jerry Buss.