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    A hardcourt legend closes out a Hall of Fame career...

    1973-74 Jerry West Game Worn Los Angeles Lakers Jersey, MEARS A10. It's difficult to know how much of Jerry West's enormous success was due to natural ability, and how much could be credited to his unbreakable will to win, since the latter was present in such tremendous supply that the natural balance was particularly skewed. Certainly West owned one of the prettiest (and most effective) jump shots in the game, but his peerless work ethic was the attribute that earned him the respect of teammates and opponents alike, and the sole distinction, in 1969, of being named the only NBA Finals MVP representing a losing team. Even in the midst of fellow legends from Elgin Baylor to Gail Goodrich to Wilt Chamberlain, it was West who commanded a leadership role on the court, whose penchant for last-second heroics earned him the nickname "Mr. Clutch."

    So the departure of West to begin a second career as a two-time NBA Executive of the Year came as a healthy shock to fans at the Los Angeles Forum following the 1973-74 season in which this road purple gamer saw action. Age and injury limited West's contributions this year to just thirty-one games, instilling the garment with "moderate" use that the experts at MEARS consider appropriate for West's abridged service. "Lakers" is applied to the chest in yellow and white tackle twill above the fabled double-fours, digits retired in November 1983 along with Chamberlain's number "13" and Baylor's number "22" as the first three honored in franchise history. "West 44" is similarly applied to reverse. "Tiernan" manufacturer's label appears at center front hemline.

    Today every jersey on an NBA court honors West, whose silhouette dominates the league log, but the offered garment carries enormous significance as one of the last worn in competition by the man himself. A closing bookend on one of the most important careers in the history of the professional game. LOA from MEARS, A10. LOA from Heritage Auctions.

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    Auction Dates
    February, 2015
    21st-22nd Saturday-Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
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