Monday, 22 April, 2019

Magic Johnson steps down in LA, says Ben Simmons situation 'hurt him'

Sports  Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron’s Los Angeles Lakers to miss NBA playoffs Crowquill Today 5:00 AM   Ted Crow      By Ted Crow The Plain Dealer Sports Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron’s Los Angeles Lakers to miss NBA playoffs Crowquill Today 5:00 AM Ted Crow By Ted Crow The Plain Dealer
Jennie Wade | 11 April, 2019, 00:56

"Magic, from my point of view now, listening to him talk, he's just a face". And, I think I don't want to, her and I have such an incredible relationship.

The legendary former player said he plans to go back to community work, where he can help players more with their development. The system is crumbling down.

"I don't know what he's going to do, but during his free-agent tour, I'm told he going to give the Lakers an interview".

LeBron James was stunned to learn of Magic Johnson's decision to step down as the Los Angeles Lakers' president of basketball operations, a source with knowledge of James' thinking told ESPN's Ramona Shelburne. Magic Johnson was supposed to make the Lakers fun again.

I'm a free bird and I've been handcuffed.

He stepped into the position following the organization's reshaping of its leadership team, with the firing of general manager Mitch Kupchak and relieving Jim Buss of his role as executive vice president of basketball operations.

"What's tough for fans to understand is there's going to be misery before you can get good", Johnson said.

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"I think that with (owner Jeanie Buss) and I, I want to always preserve our relationship with her". And love her. And then, I had more fun when I was able to be the big brother and the ambassador to everybody.

Magic's move will impact not only the Lakers, but a lot of the league.

However, there were some other issues which were frustrating Johnson. A year of LeBron James' enduring prime was wasted without even a playoff appearance to show for all the struggles.

But after James strained his groin at Christmas and subsequently sat out for the longest injury absence of his 16-year National Basketball Association career, the Lakers were unable to compile enough midseason wins to stay in playoff contention.

James was shut down for the season late last month, and he watched the Lakers' season finale in street clothes on the bench.

Johnson said his inability to speak freely about rival players was a contributing factor, calling himself a "free bird" who didn't like being "handcuffed". There's a gentleman across the hall who is a born Laker. He said both were decisions for Buss. "Because I knew I would be crying like a baby in front of her".

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