Magic Johnson has stepped down as President of Basketball Operations for the Los Angeles Lakers. The celebrity executive made the announcement at an impromptu press conference on Tuesday evening. NBA media jumped all over the story.
Magic Johnson is conducting an impromptu press conference and just stepped down as Lakers president. He said he loves Jeanie Buss like a sister.— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) April 10, 2019
Magic Johnson: “(Jeanie) doesn’t know I’m standing here.”— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) April 10, 2019
Magic Johnson says that his position doesn’t allow him to be a statesman of the game of basketball. He says he wants to go back to his wonderful life away from this position. “I was happier when I wasn’t the president (of the Lakers)”— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) April 10, 2019
Magic Johnson says he likes to be free to congratulate players such as Russell Westbrook when he hit the 20–20-20 mark. Says he couldn’t be himself and he hasn’t informed Jeanie Buss yet.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) April 10, 2019
Magic Johnson says the decision was not over Luke Walton’s job status. He says making this announcement, which, Jeanie Buss isn’t aware of yet, is a “monkey off my back.”— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) April 10, 2019
Since taking over as president of the Lakers, Magic Johnson never fully committed to the job. Often he was traveling and away from the team. His office hours were limited. He didn't do a lot of scouting. Running an NBA team takes a tremendous commitment of time and energy.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 10, 2019
Magic has repeatedly said that he was happier before he took this job. Believes the young core with LeBron can contend once it adds another star player.— Bill Oram (@billoram) April 10, 2019
Johnson had held his position in the Lakers’ front office since February of 2017.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN just ripped Magic and the Lakers’ franchise:
Lakers coaching staff fully expected to be fired in hours after the final game of the season. They had believed they were gone for months. Now? Magic quits in public, saying he's too scared to tell Jeanie Buss face-to-face. What an embarrassing episode for a historic franchise.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) April 10, 2019
And the Lakers make their official response: