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Lakers Roundtable: Roland Lazenby discusses Jerry West and the 1960 U.S. Olympic team's induction to Basketball Hall of Fame

August 12, 2010 |  3:19 pm

Those wondering when the NBA season is ever going to start can temporarily take solace that there are still plenty of Lakers items to talk about in the upcoming weeks. One of them includes the fact that both Lakers owner Jerry Buss and the 1960s U.S. Olympics team, on which Jerry West played, both will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame Friday in Springfield. Mass. We'll host a live chat tomorrow at 3:45 p.m. as we watch the ceremonies on NBA TV

Until then, I'm going to take a look at both of those story lines. For starters, I talked with Roland Lazenby, who wrote a book about West this year titled "Jerry West: The Life and Legend of a Basketball Icon." Since I spoke at length with Lazenby about West when the book came out, this conversation mostly centers on West's involvement with the 1960 U.S. Olympic team, which is also featured in the book.

Among the highlights from my interview with Lazenby:

-- The impact the 1960 U.S. Olympic team had on the game and why it was so dominant. The team went 8-0 and defeated teams by an average margin of 42.4 points. West averaged 13.7 points per game.

-- The relationship between West and Oscar Robertson

-- How Coach Pete Newell convinced West not to quit the team.

-- Why West kept remembering his brother David, during the team's Olympic run

-- Lazenby's comparisons between the 1960 and 1992 U.S. Olympics teams.

You can purchase Lazenby's book on West here, read his blog at Laker Noise and follow him on Twitter.

-- Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter: twitter.com/latmedina. E-mail the Lakers blog at  mgmedin@gmail.com 


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