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Golden State Warriors co-owners Joe Lacob, left, and Peter Gruber, right, announce Jerry West as the newest member to the Warriors' Executive Board during a press conference at the St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco, Calif. on Tuesday, May 24, 2011. (Laura A. Oda/Staff)

The Warriors booked a fancy hotel in San Francisco. Co-owners Joe Lacob and Peter Guber made an appearance, as did star forward David Lee. Warrior girls were on hand to greet the attendees.

All to announce the hiring of a consultant.

Jerry West, whom the Warriors introduced Tuesday, clearly is more than just a consultant. He will not be a decision-maker, but he will have an impact on what goes on.

"I see things a little bit different than they do and I will give my opinion," West said. "I do think there's changes that need to be made here, and I know they do in talking with them. I would encourage them to be a little more aggressive than they have been."

West will not necessarily seek to dominate the decision-making. He stressed the team approach to management and said he didn't take the job until he was sure Larry Riley and Bob Myers, the general manager and his assistant, were comfortable with him around.

Officially, West is a consultant on the basketball operations staff and he has a seat on Golden State's board of directors. Lacob said West also has an "economic interest" in the Warriors.

Unofficially? West might be the new trigger finger.

That's exactly what Lacob said he's hoping for from West. In many respects, the Warriors filled a need by adding West, who was not only a Hall of Fame player but won four titles as the Lakers' head basketball honcho and rebuilt the Memphis Grizzlies.

The hope is that Golden State's decision room is supplemented by West's experience, connections and mettle.

Right off the bat, West was talking about pushing the envelope. He talked about having the gumption to make a big trade, even shipping a big-name star. He talked about aggressively pursuing free agents, even overspending to get the right player.

"We have high goals," Lacob said. "The only way to (reach) that is to have good people around you. The best people. All he talks about is winning, about passion, about commitment. He has one of the best track records in almost every respect as an executive, as a player, as a coach, as anyone who's ever been around the word basketball. He's the legend. He is that good. He is that smart. He is that experienced."

Lacob said the courtship with West had been going on for months before the announcement Friday that he was hired.

West said he joined the Warriors because of Lacob and Guber. He emphasized he still has a burning passion for basketball, which convinced him to come back to the game after four years of retirement. He said the energy of the Warriors' owners convinced him Golden State was the right fit.

West said the Warriors' biggest need is size and that the team needs to go in a "little bit different direction" than the offense-first mentality.

When asked about the Monta Ellis-Stephen Curry backcourt, he stopped well short of saying the two can win big together. He said picking the new coach will be the hardest task and the Warriors tradition of changing coaches frequently is a bad idea.

He might be just a consultant by title, but you get the sense his voice will carry some weight.

"I know my place in this organization," West said. "I think I can be of help. I think I can stimulate ideas. I think I can encourage them to be bold, risk-taking. I will tell you, I'm not a shrinking violet. I'm not. If you don't want my opinion, don't ask."