Lakers’ fans remain loyal to the team despite continuing losses. Although the Lakers are going to have the worst winning record in the team’s 66 years of existence, Givo Ganjeh is still a loyal fan. He follows the Lakers no matter how badly they play, how many games they lose or how many players are injured. In an interview on February 18, 2015, the two-year anniversary of the death of Lakers’ owner Dr. Jerry Buss, Ganjeh discussed why he remains loyal to the team.
37-year-old Ganjeh said that ever since he can remember he has been a Lakers’ fan and grew up watching the Lakers throughout the showtime era and has always appreciated the Lakers’ legacy. Watching Kareem, Magic and Worthy made him want to play basketball himself as a kid and continue to play as an adult. As a matter of fact, Ganjeh is known as the Assyrian Kobe in the leagues for which he has played, in a nod to both his heritage and basketball skills.
Watching Shaq and Kobe and Kobe with Gasol continue the Lakers’ legacy was great to see and he is hopeful for the future. He wants to see who the next generation of Laker superstars will be. He believes it may be another three to five years before they will be in contention for a championship, depending on who they can get through free agency and who they retain from the young team they have.
When asked about Kobe Bryant, Ganjeh said that Kobe is one reason he has remained a loyal Lakers’ fan despite their continuing losses. He said that he has had a huge effect on the Lakers and he has made the Lakers who they are they are today. He continued the legacy started by Magic Johnson and those before him. While his injuries have been serious, and you do not want to see him go out that way, father time gets everyone. He added,” I see him probably retiring after next year because he does not want to continue to play just to play. Kobe wants to play at a high level”. Ganjeh said he remained loyal when Magic retired, when Worthy retired and will remain loyal if Kobe retires.
His feelings about Jeanie Buss are very positive. Ganjeh stated that he believed that Buss was responsible for the multi-billion Time Warner deal with the team. He added that so far she has tried to follow the path that her father, the late Dr. Jerry Buss set for the franchise. He realizes that times are very difficult for the Buss family right now, but he remains confident that Jeanie Buss is more than capable of restoring the Lakers to their former glory.
Like many Lakers’ fans, he not only remains loyal, despite the teams losses by following them, but also spends his dollars on Lakers’ gear. Ganjeh displayed his impressive collection of 50 pairs of Kobe shoes, 15 Lakers’ t-shirts and 15 Lakers’ jerseys. Even Ganjeh’s beautiful wife of five years, Eivet, has her own collection of Kobe shoes and Lakers’ gear. He recently added a valuable keepsake to his collection. Ganjeh, along with his brother, Sarquis attended a Lakers’ game on Jan 27 when all the fans at the game received championship-like rings to commemorative Jerry Buss’ birthday.
By Gerald Sowell
Photo By Givo Ganjeh