Jerry Buss had many sides, but his best one truly defined him

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And that has continued. At one point, Buss asked Sharman to do occasional written reports on his views of the current Lakers. Sharman hesitated, because he didn't want to be seen as undercutting any of the current Lakers management.

Buss heard him out and said, OK, just write them for me.

We live in an era of soulless corporations and heartless management. People are laid off by email or by discovering the lock changed on their office door.

In Buss' corporation, there was always heart and soul.

Steiner's daughter, Cathy, is developmentally disabled. She is also a huge Lakers fan, of course, and used to sit in Buss' box with her dad at games and keep score. She used the game program to do so.

But somewhere along the line, an order had come to the ushers that the game programs need not be distributed in the boss' box until he arrived. Invariably, Buss would be delayed by pregame duties, and one time, he didn't make it into his box until near halftime. When he arrived, Cathy let him know that she would have no more of these delays, that she needed her program before the game started.

To which Jerry Buss replied meekly: "I will take care of it, Cathy."

And he did.

"Jerry was sensational with her," Steiner says.

He was the same with thousands of other people.

bill.dwyre@latimes.com

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