The Los Angeles Lakers’ front office has been a disaster for a number of years, and the latest round of reports suggest that infighting led to Magic Johnson’s departure.
Magic sent shockwaves over two weeks ago announcing his resignation as President of Basketball Operations, one of the most powerful occupations in sports. The way he left the Lakers, by having a press conference and not notifying anyone else in the front office, left many in bewilderment on why he didn’t talk to owner Jeanie Buss in the first place.
According to NBA insider Ric Bucher, he disclosed on Colin Cowherd’s Fox Sports Show on Wednesday that Magic learned of the criticism from emails between Buss and general manager Rob Pelinka.
“My understanding is that there were some emails that were exchanged between Rob and Jeanie…about Magic and about what Magic was and wasn’t doing,” Bucher told to Cowherd explaining the protocol of the email exchanges. He continues by explaining that Magic discovered the emails through a blind CC that was sent to him with Pelinka criticizing Magic’s business acumen.
“Somehow, the exchange between Rob and Jeanie ended up on that string of the blind CC’s that were going to Magic. So, Magic now is seeing emails from Rob to Jeanie that were critical of what he was doing and maybe most important in all this is that there was no indication that Jeanie was backing Rob up in terms of either going to Magic and letting him know this was going on or going back at Rob and defending Magic. That was not happening and so when he talked about the backstabbing, to me, my understanding that’s what started it.”
Bucher would elaborate that since Buss gave no indication of support of Magic and didn’t attempt to keep Johnson in the fold aided in Magic leaving the organization.
The full quotes from Bucher can be heard on the seven-minute mark in the video below:
If true, this adds another black eye into the soap opera that was the 2018-19 Lakers season. With the POBO spot still vacant, Pelinka and Kurt Rambis are more focused in searching for a new head coach.