Two days before its official unveiling as part of NBA All-Star weekend festivities, Tom Hoffarth of the L.A. DAILY NEWS snapped a shot of the new Jerry West statue gracing Chick Hearn Court at Staples Center:
West joins a bronze pantheon of L.A. greats outside Staples that include Magic Johnson, Wayne Gretzky, Chick Hearn and Oscar de la Hoya.
Hoffarth snapped the spoilerific photo with his cellphone during the few short moments it was visible as workers quickly affixed the 14-foot-tall frozen logo atop a one-and-a-half ton granite pedestal.
Longtime Los Angeles journalist Hoffarth’s reaction to the West statue:
Not quite the pose of the NBA logo that we imagined — he’s still driving to the basket with the ball in his left hand, but not so upright. But moments after we took this, the statue was wrapped in black covering, likely not to be revealed officially for another 48 hours.
The public is invited to the 5 p.m. ceremony, hosted by Jim Hill, with the official unveiling at about 6 p.m. The 14 foot bronze statue on the granite pedestal weighs about 1,500 pounds. It was created by Julie Rotblatt Amrany and Omri Amrany, who also did the statues of Gretzky, Magic (17 feet tall), De La Hoya (14 feet tall) and Chick Hearn (16 feet and 5,000 pounds) that are in front of Staples Center on Chick Hearn Court.
West’s figure cuts a superhero swath and reminds me of what I’d pay to watch 44 scorch the floor.