Los Angeles Lakers: The post-playing legacy of the Showtime Lakers

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(Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images) – Los Angeles Lakers

It doesn’t get better for the Los Angeles Lakers than Showtime.

The Showtime era has been not only the most influential age in the history of the Los Angeles Lakers but also one of the most marking phenomena in the history of the NBA.

It starts and finishes with Magic Johnson. From 1979, when he was drafted first overall pick by new owner Jerry Buss, to the 1992 preseason, when he canceled his attempted return to the league.

In that span of time, a definite style of play that goes beyond any coach’s approach was defined by the sole presence of Magic on the court and, although many players came and go, it held on a core that defined the era together with Johnson.

In fact, everything was dismantled only when, with Magic refusal to return, the Showtime era was officially over in 1993. That season marked the end of an era in Los Angeles and the beginning of a painful but necessary rebuilding that would last less than the last one we saw.

Many of those players went on with their own lives and careers, while Magic made his triumphant return to the NBA in 1996, with no player who had previously won a championship with him on the team.

Then Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal took over in Los Angeles and by 2002 they had conquered a three-peat.

But the Showtime era remained an unforgettable time in LA and its members forever tied to that golden era of Lakers basketball. Their success was so great that maybe they could translate it to the next phase of their careers and the game organization.

As a matter of fact, after retirement, many of the staple members of that team pursued a career in some branch of the organization, icons that would bring forth the legacy of the Showtime era at the service of the Lakers. And it is good to see that many (if not all) of them had success in their respective area, sparking the conditions that would help the organization to reach new success.

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