Who is on the NBA Logo? The Legacy of Jerry West and the Movement to Honor Kobe Bryant

A 16-year-old boy from British Columbia has ignited a movement to change the NBA logo to honor the late Kobe Bryant. Nick Moghtader, from Vancouver, launched a petition on Change.org, garnering millions of signatures and …

who is on nba logo

A 16-year-old boy from British Columbia has ignited a movement to change the NBA logo to honor the late Kobe Bryant. Nick Moghtader, from Vancouver, launched a petition on Change.org, garnering millions of signatures and support from numerous celebrities. This initiative aims to immortalize Bryant, who tragically died in a helicopter crash along with his daughter Gianna and seven others.

The Petition’s Inception and Impact

Nick Moghtader’s petition to change the NBA logo began as a personal endeavor to cope with the loss of his idol, Kobe Bryant. Unexpectedly, the petition resonated with millions, quickly amassing over 2.7 million signatures. High-profile figures such as Justin Bieber, Usher, and Snoop Dogg have publicly endorsed the campaign, further amplifying its reach.

Initially, Nick anticipated modest support, but the overwhelming response stunned him. “Never would I have thought for this petition to get so incredibly big,” he expressed in a statement on Change.org. This initiative became a collective mourning process and a tribute to Bryant’s profound impact on fans worldwide.

Will the NBA Logo Change?

Despite the petition’s success, the NBA has yet to respond officially to the proposal. While Nick remains hopeful, urging supporters to continue sharing the petition, the outcome remains uncertain. The Change.org petition stands as the first in 2020 to surpass one million signatures globally, showcasing the widespread desire for change.

Understanding the Current NBA Logo

The existing NBA logo, introduced in 1960, features a silhouette of Jerry West, a legendary player known for his exceptional career with the L.A. Lakers. West’s image, captured in a photograph by Wen Roberts in 1969, was chosen for its dynamic representation of the sport. Alan Siegel, the brand consultant who designed the logo, confirmed this in a 2010 interview with the Los Angeles Times.

Interestingly, the NBA has never officially acknowledged Jerry West as the logo’s model. Siegel suggested that the league prefers to keep the logo institutional rather than associating it with a specific individual. Additionally, there might have been concerns about potential financial claims from West, though he has expressed no desire for such recognition.

Jerry West’s Stance on the Logo

Jerry West himself has often stated that he wishes the league would change the logo. Despite the flattering association, he feels uncomfortable with the attention and prefers the focus to be on the league and its players as a whole. West’s humility and reluctance to claim the spotlight further highlight his character, which contrasts sharply with the grandeur of being the NBA’s emblem.

Kobe Bryant: A Contender for the NBA Logo

The tragic death of Kobe Bryant in 2020 prompted fans and players alike to propose him as the new face of the NBA logo. Kyrie Irving was among the first to suggest this change, reflecting the deep respect and admiration for Bryant’s contributions to basketball. However, other iconic silhouettes, such as Michael Jordan’s Jumpman logo, have also been considered, though its corporate ties complicate its use.

The Legacy and Influence of Jerry West

Jerry West’s influence on the NBA extends far beyond his role as the logo. Known as “The Logo,” West’s contributions to the sport are monumental. Born on May 28, 1938, in Chelyan, West Virginia, he made significant strides from humble beginnings. His basketball career began at East Bank High School, where he led his team to a state championship and earned All-American honors.

West continued to excel at West Virginia University, earning All-American titles in 1959 and 1960 and leading his team to the 1959 Final Four. He was then drafted by the Lakers in 1960, marking the start of a legendary 14-season career in the NBA. West was an All-Star every season and played a pivotal role in the Lakers’ success.

West’s Post-Playing Career and Executive Success

After retiring as a player, Jerry West transitioned into an executive role, significantly shaping the NBA’s landscape. He was instrumental in constructing the “Showtime” Lakers of the 1980s, a team that won five NBA championships. His executive prowess continued with the Memphis Grizzlies and later the Golden State Warriors, where he helped secure multiple titles.

In recognition of his lifetime achievements, West received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2019. His legacy is further cemented by his family’s involvement in basketball, with his sons holding significant roles in NBA team management.

Conclusion: The Future of the NBA Logo

The movement to change the NBA logo to honor Kobe Bryant reflects a profound respect for his legacy and the impact he had on the sport. While Jerry West’s silhouette has been the emblem of the NBA for decades, the push for a new representation highlights the evolving narrative of the league.

Whether or not the NBA decides to update its logo, the discussions underscore the significant contributions of both Jerry West and Kobe Bryant to basketball. Their legacies, marked by excellence and humility, continue to inspire fans and players alike.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is on the current NBA logo?
The current NBA logo features the silhouette of Jerry West, a legendary player for the Los Angeles Lakers. This design was introduced in 1969 by Alan Siegel, based on a photograph of West in action.

Why is there a movement to change the NBA logo to Kobe Bryant?
The movement to change the NBA logo to Kobe Bryant began after his tragic death in 2020. Fans and players felt it would be a fitting tribute to honor his impact on the sport and his legacy.

Has the NBA officially recognized Jerry West as the logo?
No, the NBA has never officially recognized Jerry West as the logo, despite widespread acknowledgment. The league prefers to keep the logo institutional rather than associating it with a specific individual.

What other players have been considered for the NBA logo?
Besides Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan’s Jumpman logo has been suggested. However, its strong corporate ties make it unlikely for use as the NBA logo.

What is Jerry West’s opinion on being the NBA logo?
Jerry West has expressed discomfort with being the logo, stating that he wishes the league would change it. He prefers to avoid the spotlight and believes the focus should be on the league and its players.

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