Who Is Elgin Baylor in Winning Time? Let’s check out. Elgin Gay Baylor was a professional basketball player, coach, and executive in the United States. He was a forward for the Minneapolis/Los Angeles Lakers for 14 seasons in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Baylor was a skilled shooter, rebounder, and passer best known for his signature hanging jump shot. He is recognised as one of the game’s all-time best players, has been the No. 1 draught pick in 1958, the NBA Rookie of the Year in 1959, an 11-time NBA All-Star, and a 10-time member of the All-NBA first team. The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame inducted Baylor in 1977. Baylor was chosen as one of the NBA’s 50 Greatest Players in 1996. Baylor was named to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team in October 2021, confirming his status as one of the league’s best players of all time.
‘Winning Time: The Rise of the Lakers Dynasty‘ is a fictitious account of the Los Angeles Lakers’ journey to becoming one of the finest teams in the NBA. The sports drama series chronicles different on and off-court events that created the Los Angeles Lakers’ “Showtime” era in the 1980s.
In the eighth episode of the series, owner Jerry Buss expresses his displeasure with interim Head Coach Paul Westhead’s performance. As a result, Elgin Baylor, a generally dependable name, is marketed as a swift replacement. If you’re interested in learning more about Baylor, his time with the Lakers, and whether he was ever considered as a replacement for Westhead, here’s all we’ve learned thus far!
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Elgin Baylor, Who is He?
Elgin Baylor was a former NBA basketball player who was most famous for his tenure with the Los Angeles Lakers. Baylor was born on September 16, 1934, in Washington, DC, and began playing basketball at the age of 14. Baylor played for the College of Idaho, Seattle University, and Westside Ford, an Amateur Athletic Union team in Seattle, after impressing with his high school accomplishments. In the 1956 NBA Draft, he was selected by the Minneapolis Lakers (later known as the LA Lakers), but he chose to stay in college.
Baylor was picked by the Lakers for the second time, this time as the first overall pick in the 1958 NBA Draft. Baylor would go on to play fourteen seasons for the Lakers, forming a strong tandem with Jerry West in the 1960s. He retired from professional basketball after nine games in the 1971–72 season. Despite this, the club went on to win the season’s championship. Baylor was named to the NBA All-Star team 11 times throughout his career and guided the Lakers to eight NBA Finals appearances.
Was Elgin Baylor Considered as a Paul Westhead Replacement?
Baylor began his coaching career after concluding his playing career, joining the New Orleans Jazz as an Assistant Coach in 1974 before being promoted to Head Coach in 1975. However, following the 1978–79 season, Baylor was fired due to the team’s dismal record. Jerry West, a former teammate of Baylor’s, endorses him as Paul Westhead’s replacement in ‘Winning Time.’ The character of Baylor makes an appearance in the sixth episode, played by Orlando Jones (‘American Gods’).
However, there is no evidence that Baylor was considered a Westhead replacement midway through the 1979-80 season. Baylor was Jerry Buss’ choice to be Paul Westhead’s assistant coach, according to Jeff Pearlman’s book ‘Showtime,’ which serves as the primary source material for the television series. Baylor is not mentioned as a possible Head Coach candidate in the book. As a result, it appears like the show’s creators have dramatised an actual incident in order to increase the plot’s intensity.
In actuality, Baylor became an executive with the Los Angeles Clippers. Since 1986, he has been the team’s Vice President of Basketball Operations. Before stepping down in 2008, he held the role for 22 years. Baylor died of natural causes on March 22, 2021, at the age of 86. Elaine Baylor was his wife, and they had three children together.