You know, there's still this misconception going around with Sakurai: He's barely "the Kirby guy" anymore, stopped having anything to do with it ages ago. People are still forgetting this.
He stopped with the series about a decade ago, and it's all been left up to just HAL from that point forward. Iwata was also the other creator of the Kirby franchise. People just seem to give Sakurai way, way more credit than he actually deserves with it.