The Washington Post

Jack Kent Cooke kicked John Wooden out of his house

NBA legend Jerry West (and the co-author of his new autobiography) will be chatting to WaPo readers Thursday at noon. West would like to focus questions on his book, but he will also answer non-book questions. Submit them here.

To prepare for the chat, The Post’s Jon Denunzio took a spin through West’s book, and picked out a few Jack Kent Cooke nuggets, which he passed along. For example:

* Cooke used to call West to his office by getting on the PA himself and summoning him like this: “Would Jerry West please report to my office.”

 * Cooke “always acted kind of above you and treated you as if you were subservient,” West wrote. “He was Lord of the Manor (and dressed the part in his tweedy,  three-piece suits) and the rest of us were basically peons.”

* And then there’s this: Cooke had his GM offer John Wooden the Lakers’ coaching job, and after Wooden said he was happy in college, the Squire still insisted Wooden come to his house to talk about it. Cooke offered Wooden a huge sum of money, then when Wooden declined, Cooke said, “Fine, now get the hell out.”

Which means, yes, Jack Kent Cooke threw John Wooden out of his house.

If you want to ask West about’s that link again.

Dan Steinberg writes about all things D.C. sports at the D.C. Sports Bog.


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