Jerry West Talks 'Very Sad' Departure from Warriors, Joining Clippers

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistAugust 22, 2017

PLAYA VISTA, CA- JUNE 19:  Head Coach Doc Rivers of the Los Angeles Clippers name Jerry West as Special Consultant at a press conference in Playa Vista, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2016 NBAE  (Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
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Jerry West, who left his advisory role with the Golden State Warriors in June to join the Los Angeles Clippers front office, said his departure was not of his own volition.

"Frankly it was very sad, OK? It really was," West told Tim Kawakami of The Athletic (h/t RealGM). "A place where I thought that if I was going to work another year or if somebody wanted me to work another year, I thought I could contribute; I did not want to leave. I did not want to leave. I was very happy there."

West, 79, joined the Warriors in 2011 as an adviser to owner Joe Lacob. Golden State won two championships and built most of its championship core with him onboard; West has earned eight rings as an NBA executive, six of which came with the Los Angeles Lakers.

"It was time for me to leave. I'm in Los Angeles again," West said of his move to the Clippers. "For me, I'll have a chance to go in the office a little bit and watch some of the people that have been hired, to watch our coaches coach. I've often said I've done some crazy things in my life because of the timing, and maybe the timing was right."

The Clippers have already begun reshaping their front office, with head coach Doc Rivers losing his president of basketball operations title. Lawrence Frank now holds that position. The team is set to hire Michael Winger as its general manager and Trent Redden as his assistant, per Adrian Wojnarowski and Kevin Arnovitz of ESPN.

The Clippers also traded Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets and retained Blake Griffin on a new five-year contract this summer.