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NBA News Roundup: Leaked voicemail reveals Jerry West called LA Lakers a 'sh*t-show', investigation into LA Clippers - Kawhi Leonard deal intensifies

Los Angeles Clippers v Los Angeles Lakers
Los Angeles Clippers v Los Angeles Lakers
Modified 19 Dec 2020, 00:13 IST

Former LA Lakers legend and current executive board member for the LA Clippers, Jerry West has been accused of calling the Lakers a “sh*t-show.” In the latest edition of the NBA News Roundup, we look at the incredible lawsuit that has resulted in the league launching an investigation into the LA Clippers' acquisition of Kawhi Leonard.

Johnny Wilkes, a man who claims to be best friends with Leonard, had recently filed a lawsuit against the LA Clippers and Jerry West. Wilkes claimed the LA Clippers executive entered a verbal agreement to pay him $2.5 million for helping the LA Clippers’ with their successful bid to sign Kawhi Leonard.

Johnny Wilkes has now produced a voice recording of a man who he claims to be Jerry West. In the recording, the speaker claims to be concerned about the fact that Kawhi Leonard might end up signing for the LA Lakers.

Talking about LeBron James and how 'the King' will always be the face of the LA Lakers despite Kawhi Leonard’s potential presence, Jerry West called the Lakers a “sh*t-show”. He also suggested that Kawhi Leonard will not be the face of the Lakers franchise despite him potentially being the “best player” on the team.

"I just find it hard to believe that he would want to go to that sh*t show where he would not even be ... wouldn't even get his name in the paper and he wouldn't be the face of the franchise that's for sure. He might be the best player on the team, but hope things are well and again, I really really appreciate everything you've done," the speaker claims in the leaked voicemail.

NBA News Roundup: Jerry West accused of calling the Lakers a "sh*t-show" in the run in to the LA Clippers' bid to sign Kawhi Leonard

Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Five
Dallas Mavericks v Los Angeles Clippers - Game Five

Jerry West is a NBA legend for the LA Lakers and has been working as an executive board member for the LA Clippers since 2017. The person speaking in the leaked recording, who does sound like Jerry West, appears to thank Johnny Wilkes and Sam Watson for their help in the LA Clippers bid to sign Kawhi Leonard.

Leonard has now distanced himself from the lawsuit and said that Jerry West had no influence on his decision to join the LA Clippers.


Johnny Wilkes has also alleged that Jerry West had a verbal agreement with him to pay $2.5 million for all the 'help' the LA Clippers received in their bid to sign Kawhi Leonard. A representative for Jerry West released the following statement to TMZ Sports regarding the situation:

“I am not aware of any lawsuit being filed against me and I deny engaging in any improper conduct in connection with the signing of Kawhi Leonard.”

Furthermore, the LA Clippers have also claimed these allegations are false and released the following statement about the issue:

"The lawsuit filed by Johnny Wilkes is replete with inaccuracies and the allegations are baseless. The Clippers are fully cooperating with the NBA in its investigation, which is standard when these types of allegations are made. They are providing the NBA with evidence that the allegations are false."

While it is difficult to predict what the conclusion of the lawsuit will be, the voice recording in question undoubtedly resembles the voice of Jerry West. We now await the findings of the ongoing NBA investigation into the LA Clippers - Kawhi Leonard deal.

Published 19 Dec 2020, 00:13 IST
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