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Guru of Go

A film which centers around the 1989-90 LMU Men's basketball team and Head Coach Paul Westhead.

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Westhead is the "Guru of Go"

  • Mar 24, 2010

I didn't really know what to expect going into this film.  As an LMU alumnus I figured the film would be centered around the story of Hank Gathers. Everything surrounding LMU Basketball is about Hank Gathers and his great/tragic story, so I just assumed this was going to be a documentary on him. I was wrong.  The film followed the path of Head Coach Paul Westhead and his journey through coaching various teams including the Los Angeles Lakers and the LMU Lions. This documentary was great and I cannot wait to see it again!

Not knowing much about Paul Westhead, except for hearing stories about "The System", overall the film gave me a great impression of who Westhead was not only as a basketball coach but as a person as well.  I learned a ton from this film about Westhead's coaching strategy and how he was able to bring a team so far by using a playing "system" that most people thought was nuts and wouldn't work.

The part of the film that told the story of Hank Gathers was great. Most stories I've heard or seen on TV don't get as in depth as this film did. I truly felt the emotion when he passed away in this film. I don't normally feel emotional when watching films, but this film almost made me cry. I think the fact that I was sitting in Gersten Pavilion, the very place where Hank died, watching it all unfold was what got me. Although I didn't go to LMU in 1990, the film made me feel as though I did.

Best Part:
I felt the best part of this film was when the film picked up after tell about Hank Gathers' death. The LMU Basketball team started winning and the film really pumped me up. It made me wish that next years basketball season was already here. To be able to watch a team like the '89-'90 LMU basketball team play is truly a gift. This team averaged 120 point per game and scored 181 in one of those games. It was very fun to see the old footage of the games with Bo Kimble and Hank Gathers.

I highly recommend watching this ESPN 30 by 30 film.  Not only as an LMU Alumnus and LMU Basketball fan, but as a sports fan in general, this is truly one great sports documentary.

"Guru of Go" will air on ABC, April 3rd, 2010.
Westhead is the Westhead is the

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March 24, 2010
Whoa, that's awesome that there was a film made based on people from your school! So this is what you and Angelo were all fanboying about on FB last night ;) Great review, Ryan!
More Guru of Go reviews
Quick Tip by . March 24, 2010
posted in The Bluff
Great film on Paul Westhead and the '89-'90 LMU Basketball team. Interesting, emotional, funny, inspiring!
About the reviewer
Ryan Weiss ()
Ranked #5
Follow Me On Twitter: @RyanWeiss   Read My Blog:Virtual Ryan      Born and raised in So Cal. Go Dodgers!!! I went to LMU and studied Business Admin/Marketing. I love Soccer … more
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ESPN Films' 30 for 30 is an unprecedented documentary series featuring thirty films from some of today's finest storytellers. Each filmmaker will bring their passion and personal point of view to their film detailing the issues, trends, athletes, teams, rivalries, games and events that transformed the sports landscape from 1979 to 2009.

A little about the film: "Westhead's non-stop run-and-gun offensive system at LMU dazzled the world of college basketball and turned conventional thinking on its head until early in the 1989-90 season, when LMU star Hank Gathers tragically died on the court. Oscar-winning director Bill Couturie tells this fast-paced and emotionally moving story of innovation, triumph and tragedy."

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