Mitch Chortkoff, a columnist and beat writer who covered the Los Angeles Lakers for more than 50 years, has died. He was 78.
He died Tuesday at a healthcare facility in Van Nuys following a long illness, according to his brother Stan.
Chortkoff was considered the dean of the Lakers' press corps, having begun coverage of the team in the early 1960s, shortly after they arrived from Minneapolis. He wrote about the exploits of players including Elgin Baylor, Jerry West, Magic Johnson, Shaquille O'Neal, Kobe Bryant and most recently Lonzo Ball.