Jim Buss: Live Chat

Hey everybody, thanks so much for joining us for this live chat. I look forward to spending this next hour with you.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:13 

Brad :  
What do you admire most about your father?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:13 

I'd say his honesty and his integrity. He's extremely hard working, and is very dedicated to his family. I could go on and on about my father.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:14 

 
How do you rate Mike Brown's performance as head coach so far this season?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:14 

I wouldn't put a rating on it. I'd just sum it up by saying he's ahead of what we expected, and therefore we are very pleased with what he's doing.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:15 

brian :  
What do you think of Ramon Sessions play so far and do you see him a a long term solution to the Point Guard position?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:15 

I think he's playing fantastic basketball. We expect him to be in a Lakers uniform for a long time.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:16 

Hlc31 :  
Will Kobe be a Laker for life? Would you consider to use amnesty on him if it meant signing two younger stars?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:17 

We look at Kobe as a Laker for life and wouldn't consider using the amnesty clause on him. Kobe being the player that we all love, one of the greatest Lakers of all time, we view him as family.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:19 

Arlene Verino :  
Are u still looking to add on the existing roster...
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:19 

We are always looking at the waiver wire, but we don't expect anything to come our way.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:19 

Paul, Hancock Park :  
Hey Jim, I was wondering when you and Mitch Kupchak first started thinking about how Ramon Sessions would look in a Lakers jersey?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:19 

We first started talking about Ramon last season; he's been on our radar for a year or so.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:20 

Cindy, Minneapolis :  
Long time Lakers fan living in Minnesota here, Jim. I was wondering what you thought of how many Lakers fans show up in every arena, and how crazy it is sometimes that there are more Lakers fans in a given market than that team's own fans? Does that make you proud as a part of the Buss family?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:21 

Yes, it makes us extremely proud that there are so many dedicated Lakers fans across the nation. When my dad took over the team, one of the things that bothered him the most was when New York came to the building, and there were more Knicks fans than Lakers fans. He wanted to strive for a team that was so good and so beloved that when the Lakers went to other buildings, people would cheer for them. It's a tribute to my father that his vision has become a reality.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:23 

Andrew :  
Do you think it is important for you or Mitch to contact certain players before they are traded?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:24 

As Mitch has stated, our policy is not to talk to players before trades because of the uncertainty about whether or not trades will go through.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:25 

Jeff Sims :  
Can you start an Invite a Season Ticket Holder to the suite contest? I would love to sit in your suite just once.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:26 

That is a good idea, and I promise to look into it. Thanks for the suggestion, Jeff.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:26 

Ronald Miller :  
Who is chaz, what does he do, and what are his qualifications to be employed in an NBA Front Office?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:27 

I've known Chaz for over 10 years, and when he was initially hired by the Lakers, it was as my assistant, a job which he performed for over two years. During that time, he accompanied me on a lot of scouting trips and showed a natural affinity for that type of work. So after a couple of years in his previous position, we felt he earned the right to be a scout, and that was under the direction of Mitch Kupchak and Bill Bertka. He does not work for me, he works for the Lakers under Bill and Mitch. In addition, I'd like to say that Chaz has many qualities that any employer would look for in an employee, including the fact that he's intelligent, hard working and trustworthy.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:31 

And by the way, I'd like to clear up a misperception that has been written about his past: Chaz has never been a bartender.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:32 

MIkeL :  
Do you think there will be a special honor at Staples for Jack Nicholson one day? A gold seat? A statue?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:32 

If we can find an appropriate way to honor such a great, dedicated fan like Jack, it would be wonderful.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:34 

JohnTom :  
Would you ever consider hanging up Derek Fisher's or Robert Horry's numbers in the rafters simply due to their unbelievable history of shots to help the Lakers win championships?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:38 

It's been our practice to retire the jerseys for the players that have been elected to the Hall of Fame. There are a lot of Lakers who are worthy of having their jerseys retired, going back to the days of the players who played alongside Jerry West and Elgin Baylor through the Showtime era and forward.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:38 

Sonya :  
How many hours did Mitch, your dad, and yourself spend together in the days leading to the trade deadline?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:39 

It was certainly a lot of hours, but that wasn't just in the days leading up to the trade deadline. Improving our roster is always under consideration, and it intensifies greatly heading into the deadline. We started thinking about the make up of our team specifically after the sweep to Dallas, so it's harder to put it into hours than it is into months.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:41 

Sean :  
Jim, thanks for doing this! Would you mind giving us a rundown of who is involved on the basketball side of things i.e. scouting these days? Is there an new assistant GM? Who's involved besides yourself, Dr. Buss, Mitch & Chaz?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:41 

The Basketball Operations includes Bill Bertka, our Director of Scouting, Rondre Jackson and Glenn Carraro, alongside Mitch and myself. Furthermore, we have seven scouts, including Chaz, who cover the global basketball landscape.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:43 

Arturo :  
Are there any plans for a shaquille o'neal or kareem statue outside of staples anytime soon?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:48 

That's an area that my sister Jeanie, who does a phenomenal job of handling the business side of things, is handling, and I believe she has spoken publicly about the fact that we will be erecting a statue of Kareem at some point next season.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:50 

Mark :  
Lifetime fan from Ireland here, would love to know who has surprised you most with their play on the team thus far in the season?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:50 

Good question, Mark. I'm not surprised by one particular player, because we obtained or drafted all of these players for a reason. You'll excuse me if I don't single one player out. But as an overall assessment, we are very pleased with our team.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:53 

 
What did you think of the Magic Johnson special on ESPN.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:53 

I lived it, and it was a very rough time for me. As for the special, I thought they did an outstanding job in conveying how difficult it was for all of us to go through. There was such a lack of education on the issue, and that was what really hurt. We are all extremely proud of Magic and so happy to see everything he is doing to educate people on that issue.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:55 

Erick :  
Hey Jim, long time fan from hometown Southern California! Who is your favorite Laker now? And who is your favorite Laker of all time?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:56 

That is an unanswerable question.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:56 

Lou :  
Huge Laker fan from New York. Is it true that Pau Gasol has been named co-captain alongside Kobe? If so then I think it's a great choice
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:56 

Yes it is true ... and I agree with you.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:56 

Daman :  
How much of your basketball management style involves evaluation of advanced statistics?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:57 

Quite a bit. I am a numbers guy that tries to translate that knowledge into bettering the team.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:57 

andy :  
Long time Lakers fan from DC....do you think we have good enough Roster to fight for the championship?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:58 

With the moves we've made this season, I believe we've put ourselves in a position to win the title.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:58 

Haris :  
Hello Mr. Buss, I only want to say you that LA have Big Fans from Bosnia, it's crazy here when LA plays the match..
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:58 

Hey Haris, thanks so much for your support from Bosnia.
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:59 

Mike :  
How do you handle some of the criticism you've been perhaps unfairly taken throughout this past season? Do you ignore it? Does it bother you?
Thursday March 22, 2012 4:59 

Criticism goes with the territory, and I respect anybody's opinion about the moves that are made. Fans have the right to share their opinion. What can be bothersome is when criticisms are made about things that are inaccurate.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:02 

Valentino :  
We all know Jerry is a great poker player....Do you play poker and are you better than your dad? I've met your dad a couple of times at Commerce Casino. He's a great guy.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:03 

I do play every blue moon, and no, I am not better than him. I'm not in the same league as my dad.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:03 

Chris :  
Hey Jim, Where do you see the Lakers Team/Organization 5 years from now. Players, Banners, Fans, etc?
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:04 

As in the past, we always strive to be at the top, so I'm looking forward to more banners.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:04 

Ryan Dez, Orange County :  
Jim would you rate Kobe as a top 5 NBA player of All Time?
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:04 Ryan Dez, Orange County

Yes. But don't ask me who the other four are!
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:05 

Michael :  
How has the new Luxury tax, due to the lockout, affected the Lakers management business decisions?
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:05 

If we only had to deal with the luxury tax, it would have a slight affect on business decisions, but the new CBA, including the heavy burden of revenue sharing, has changed the landscape for tax paying teams, reducing our ability to improve our roster. We have less flexibility than teams under the tax. Among many different restrictions, here's one example: a non tax paying team can offer significantly more money and more years in a mini-mid-level contract than can a tax paying team.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:13 

Patrick :  
Hi Jim - On a "typical" day for you at the office, how is your time divided between present time management and future development.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:13 

Of course it's different for different times of the year, but I'd assume it comes close to half and half.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:14 

Jake :  
Will the Lakers always be owned by the Buss family?
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:14 Jake

Yes. Purple and Gold is in our blood.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:14 

I really want to thank everyone for taking the time to chat with me. The questions have been great and I wish I could have answered them all. You Lakers fans are truly the best in the world, and I hope to do this again soon.
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:15 

Thanks to everyone that joined us for today's live chat, we'll talk again with you soon!
Thursday March 22, 2012 5:16