Los Angeles Lakers: Magic Johnson’s bizarre resignation overshadowed a historic night

(Photo by Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)
(Photo by Gary Coronado/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images) /

Magic Johnson’s resignation from his position with the Los Angeles Lakers overshadowed a historic night of the regular season.

Leave it to the Los Angeles Lakers to take the spotlight away from what was a Hollywood scripted night. On a night where Dwyane Wade and Dirk Nowitzki put up 30-pieces in their final nights in their home arenas and Jamal Crawford became the oldest player in NBA history to drop 50 points, Magic Johnson overshadowed all of this with a press conference to remind everyone how discombobulated the Los Angeles Lakers are.

About an hour before the club’s final tip-off of the 2018-19 regular season, LA’s president of basketball operations stood in front of cameras to ramble on about how he needed to step down from the position in order to “be himself.”

Highlights from the impromptu conference include his admission of not telling owner Jeanie Buss of his decision beforehand, describing a desire to tweet as Magic Johnson and not as a member of the Lakers’ front office, and saying the job was not fun for him.

All of this went on simultaneously with historic performances from legendary players. And instead of giving these players their deserved spotlights, the whole NBA universe turned to watch the sudden end of what was an overall disappointment of a barely two-year career of a president of basketball operations.

During his resignation, Johnson stated, “If we were not [moving in the right direction as a franchise], I probably would’ve stayed.”

While he can always hang his hat on bringing LeBron James to La La Land, where else is he getting the idea that the organization is moving in the right direction?

As Colin Ward-Henninger says in his piece for CBS Sports, he was a major factor in the Anthony Davis trade deadline debacle and told his young players to “suck it up” (and now he is quitting a tough job rather than sucking it up).

He was part of trading away a promising Ivica Zubac for a last-ditch effort on Mike Muscala. He has been a leading voice in the non-support of head coach Luke Walton.

More from Lake Show Life

The whole thing was just bizarre. And as some of the league’s most important players racked up their final NBA minutes, the league’s media burst with takes on what the hell Johnson was doing.

Of course, Wade, Dirk, and Crawford each got their moments to shine and will be remembered way beyond this single night. However, the whole move seemed tasteless and a way to keep the Lakers taking over the news cycle for all the wrong reasons.

Remember when we were all certain Luke Walton was going to be fired? When we thought this next offseason would be the true test for Magic following his misdirected idea of surrounding LeBron with poor defenders and ball handlers?

Instead, this offseason now becomes a bigger test for Jeanie Buss. Who will she hire to replace Johnson? Will she retain the head coach she hired? How much tougher will it be to attract free agents to this seeming dumpster fire?

Maybe this is all exaggeration. Maybe the Johnson resignation turns out to be a blessing in disguise.

But for right now, it’s right to cock our heads to the side, give a stink-face, and be critical. The Los Angeles Lakers are one of the most storied franchises in the NBA, and right now they’re looking more confused and unstable than a class act.

Next. 40 Greatest Lakers Players In Franchise History. dark

Magic Johnson is a legendary basketball player, more than deserving of respect. His time in the front office, though, should leave a bad taste in our mouths.