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Report: Lakers’ Jim, Jeanie Buss not speaking after Phil Jackson debacle

Jan 25, 2013, 4:18 PM EDT

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The Buss family was once described to me as a Shakespearian drama — the strong patriarch and beloved king holds the family and kingdom together, but someday the fight for power among his children will potentially destroy everything their father built.

Right now, Jerry Buss still owns the Lakers. His son Jim runs the basketball side of the operation, his daughter Jeannie the business side. Four other children are involved at various levels and will someday be part owners. Jerry Buss, 79, has been hospitalized a couple times in recent years and has not been to a Lakers game in more than a year.

The Lakers have more than enough on-the-court issues to keep fans distracted this season, but another and potentially larger issue is brewing behind the scenes, reports Kevin Ding of Orange County Register.

Well … Jeanie and Jim aren’t speaking to each other.

They haven’t since Mike Brown was fired as Lakers coach in early November and the Lakers went through that unseemly, confusing, hurtful dance with Phil Jackson – the love of Jeanie’s life and now her fiancé – before hiring Mike D’Antoni.

And before you say “Jeanie should buy out Jim, bring back Phil and all will be right with the world” know that it’s not going to work that way.

Details are scarce as to how Buss’ trust is set up, but it is believed that amid all the complicated rules and regulations, the children agreed previously to heed their father’s wishes and structure the trust to keep that majority ownership in the family. The six children (Johnny, Jim, Jeanie, Janie, Joey and Jesse) are believed to be locked in together by the trust – so that they stay together or they sell together.

The potential scenarios are nearly endless. There are groups reportedly buzzing about ready should the Buss family want to sell, although I had been told years ago that AEG (owners of Staples Center and a percentage of the Lakers) had first right of refusal. Of course, AEG is up for sale and parts may be broken off, making the situation all the more complex.

It could end up with absentee owners — the proverbial prince/princess banished from the kingdom — but it could go a lot of ways. Just something else for Lakers fans to worry about, as if there aren’t enough other issues this season.

  1. stadix093 - Jan 25, 2013 at 4:30 PM

    I don’t think there is any doubt that Jim Buss is 0-2 when it comes to coaching hires.

    • abchome - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:34 AM

      I counted 3 – Rudy Tomjanovich, Mike Brown, Mike D’Antonio.

    • polonelmeagrejr - Mar 25, 2013 at 9:01 AM

      I;m goin to start feeeling sorry for the Lakers and their fans immeditately after I’m finished feeeling sorry for the Yankeees and their fans.

  2. dannymac17 - Jan 25, 2013 at 4:35 PM

    (Johnny, Jim, Jeanie, Janie, Joey and Jesse)

    A bunch of J’s

    Something the Lakers have been struggling to find. Especially wide open ones.

    • beagle11 - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      Seems like Jim is a J-O

      • dannymac17 - Jan 25, 2013 at 6:27 PM

        Well played.

    • badintent - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:19 AM

      I cringed when I read this

  3. spthegr8 - Jan 25, 2013 at 4:39 PM

    Poll for Laker fans: Thumbs up for Jeanie ( who would have PJ with her of course ) or thumbs down for Jimbo???

    • dmcannon99 - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:18 PM

      A Lakers fan voted for Jim Buss? Seriously? Nah, didn’t think so.

      • spthegr8 - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:28 PM

        Nah couldn’t be. It has too be some “TROLL” or Jimbo himself!! 1 or the other but I KNOW it wasn’t a Laker fan!!

    • spthegr8 - Jan 26, 2013 at 3:17 PM

      I didn’t think that Jimbo would get that many votes. Im sure the vote’s for him weren’t from Laker fans. Now, if I could only scan & e-mail the results too Dr. Buss………. Wishful thinking!!!

  4. chargerdillon - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:06 PM

    They havent spoken because it’s really hard to speak clearly when you have your head so far up your ass

    Phil could’ve fixed this, but you wanted to fix it on your own Jim…..thanks buddy, glad you brought in a coach who knows how to minimize the talent given to him.

    • spthegr8 - Jan 25, 2013 at 7:37 PM

      LMAO!!! Good one!!

  5. bucrightoff - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:17 PM

    It has to be incredibly emasculating for Jim Buss to be considered such a loser compared to his sister. Probably why he’s being so damn prideful about things rather than what’s doing best for the Lakers (i.e. what would Jeanie do?)

    • themars211 - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:52 PM

      Bill Simmons wrote exactly the same thing as mentioned above by bucrightoff … should check out this article

  6. ebrownwareagle - Jan 25, 2013 at 5:58 PM

    Jim Buss = Commodus
    Phil Jackson = Maximus
    Jeanie Buss = The Son Jerry Wished He Had!!

    • badintent - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:21 AM

      The Buss family is starting to look like the Maloofs. The Horror !!

  7. echech88 - Jan 25, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    Congratulations Jim Buss on making Donald Sterling look like the most competent owner in Los Angeles and the Clipperrs the more desirable brand for players to join.

    Let that sink in for a second.

    • dko83 - Jan 25, 2013 at 6:16 PM

      This is great. It sank in and I’d never think this to be true, but right on the money. Crazy what has happened to basketball in LA in just a year….

      • mazblast - Jan 26, 2013 at 11:17 AM

        It happened in well over a year. Look at the Lakers and Clippers over the last two previous seasons. The Clippers have improved steadily, while the Lakers, even under Phil, have gotten older and less talented.

  8. dko83 - Jan 25, 2013 at 6:15 PM

    This family needs a reality show. I would watch it religiously.

    • badintent - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:22 AM

      They have a show on TV already. It’s called the Apprentice

  9. bballhistorian - Jan 25, 2013 at 7:06 PM

    Pride comes before the fall, Jimmy

  10. 8man - Jan 25, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    There are not enough words to describe my delight that the Lakers house is in such disarray. Yes, my Celtics aren’t going anywhere this year, but I don’t have any use for anything west of Missouri. California might as well be a different country. So take your Lakers and your three-hour-delay, “three-hour-delay” and stuff it into Stockton.

  11. cantonbound13 - Jan 25, 2013 at 7:54 PM

    Somewhere Mike Brown is laughing.

  12. slickdemetrius - Jan 25, 2013 at 9:55 PM

    So long as they don’t move back to Minnesota and thusly renamed the “Oceaners”, I’m fine with whoever/whatever owns the Lakers – except for anyone named McCourt. No McCourts ever.

  13. namriverrat69 - Jan 26, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    Hell, Mickey Rooney could do as good a job as D’Antonio. A good coach will nurture a relationship with each individual player to understand them in order to learn how to motivate them. Phil Jackson was a master of that at the Pro level. Jim Bush is a stool, I mean tool and also a fool to have treated Phil Jackson the way he did. Actually, he really is a stool.

    I can’t understand Jerry Buss, even though he is sick, allowinng Jim Buss to destroy the team that Jerrry Buss built with the help of Jerry West and Mitch Kupchak. How can Jerry Buss sit on his hands. This must be killing him watching how petty Jim Buss is in destroying Jerry’s Lakers., It makes me sick too.

    On the other hand – we have the Clippers. If the Lakers can’t get it done I’ll root for the Clippers to do it. It is entertainment and that is all I’m vested in this. GO CLIPPERS!!

    Jerry Buss, you have my sympathies. Out of 6 kids you end up with a bozo like Jim Buss destroying your life’s work. That’s gotta suck.

    • badintent - Jan 26, 2013 at 1:29 AM

      The Clippers bandwagon train is leaving the station.!! All aboard that’s going overboard. All first class seats get to hang with Billy crystal.

    • omniusprime - Jan 26, 2013 at 8:56 AM

      Yep Jerky Boy Jim is a stool, but not the kind you sit on. Great Comment!

  14. omniusprime - Jan 26, 2013 at 8:54 AM

    The Lakers win and this is the only article to comment on for the Lakers? Pathetic, but then that’s sport pundits – huh Kurt Helin?

    I don’t blame Jeanie one bit for being totally peeved at her little idiot brother. Jerky Boy Jim is the buffoon of the family and he gets to undo everything his father built. I just wish Dr. Jerry would wake up because obviously he’s in a coma if he hasn’t stepped in and fired his worthless devil spawn as he wrecks the fine legacy his father built of winning championships with big men and the power game. Dr. Jerry needs to give the reins of the basketball operations to Jeanie and Phil as a wedding present, Phil would make an excellent replacement for Jerky Boy Jim.

    While the Lakers played well last night I doubt they repeat it Sunday against OKC. I bet Dumbtoni can’t figure out how to beat an elite team to save his worthless life. I was rooting for the Jazz to win so that Dumbtoni would be closer to being fired.

    Fire Duymbtoni!!! Fire the little idiot buss boy!!! Trade away Stave Trash!!!

  15. addictedzone - Jan 26, 2013 at 9:59 AM

    The Trust can be structured to try and keep it all together. Joe Robbie tried that with the Miami Dolphins. But the siblings left out in the cold without decision making authority will be off to court, and the next thing you know the team will be in the hands of a garbage man and the team will be playing in an arena sponsored by Fruit of the Loom.

  16. mazblast - Jan 26, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    This is why, for all his failings as an owner, I respect Jerry Richardson (Carolina Panthers). He had the courage to fire two of his kids when they were f***-ups in the front office, and reportedly has it in his will that the team be sold when he dies.

    Leaving the team to one or more of your kids can work (Walter to Peter O’Malley, Dodgers), but generally doesn’t (George Halas to son-in-law Michael McCaskey, Paul Brown to Mike, Joe Robbie to his kids). Worst of all is when an incompetent owner leaves a team to incompetent children (the Bidwills). The jury is still out on the Steinbrenner kids.

  17. yousuxxors - Jan 26, 2013 at 3:28 PM

    i would bang jeanie

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