Whether they represent northern or southern California, state legislators are still impressed by West.
Staff members lined up on Monday to have their photos taken with the National Basketball Association’s Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy, claimed last year by the Golden State Warriors, as it visited the Capitol. Legislators got to commune with the trophy during special audiences with NBA great and Warriors executive board member Jerry West, who was swarmed during visits to the Assembly and Senate floors.
Since California contains four NBA teams, the visit prompted some ever-competitive Assembly members to needle Bay Area lawmakers still reveling in the Warriors victory. Los Angeles-area lawmakers weren’t about to let their north state brethren forget West built his Hall of Fame resume playing for the Lakers.
“Numerous members have reminded me that Mr. West, in addition to his affiliation with the Golden State Warriors, was of course a Los Angeles Laker,” said Assemblyman Kevin Mullin, D-South San Francisco, prompting some scattered applause and some hisses.
But even legislators whose loyalties lay elsewhere saved some reverence for the star in their midst.
“Had the honor of meeting Jerry West the @NBA logo today,” tweeted Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez, R-Lake Elsinore, alongside a photo of her beaming as West’s hand rested on her shoulder. “Love my @Clippers but he is a hall of famer!”