Ranking the most influential Lakers players of all time

Magic Johnson rookie card (Photo by: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Magic Johnson rookie card (Photo by: Stephen Dunn/Getty Images) /
1 of 5

Numerous outstanding players have played for the Los Angeles Lakers, one of the most illustrious and successful teams in the history of the NBA.

Several players have had an everlasting impression on the team’s heritage, from the franchise’s early ’70s to the late 2000s in Los Angeles. We’ll examine the top five most influential Laker players of all time and how their contributions went beyond the court and helped define the team’s identity.

The Top 5 most influential Lakers players of all-time:

1. Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson, whose name is associated with superior basketball, not only revolutionized the game but also played a significant part in restoring the NBA at a critical juncture. The league was in need of revitalization when he arrived on the scene with a fun and engaging style of play during a period of dwindling ratings and weak competition.

Magic’s Lakers in the 80s revolutionized basketball with their energy, style, and Magic’s unmatched court vision and creativity. He showed that basketball was more than just scoring.

Here are a few of Magic’s accolades as a Laker:

  • 5-time NBA Champion
  • 3-time NBA Finals MVP
  • 3-time NBA MVP
  • 1992 Olympic Gold Medalist
  • 12-time NBA All-Star
  • 1992 All-Star MVP
  • One of the top 50 & 75 greatest players ever

Unfortunately, Magic Johnson’s 1991 HIV announcement brought attention to the fact that anyone can be affected by the virus. What made him influential was becoming an advocate for HIV education, prevention, and support through the Magic Johnson Foundation. Thus, combating discrimination and inspiring compassion worldwide.

The effect Magic Johnson had on the NBA cannot be understated. He continues to be a bright example of how basketball can be a source of inspiration, joy, and collaboration, establishing a lasting legacy that will alter the game and have an impact on future generations of players.