Today, the Lakers announced Magic Johnson will return to the franchise in an advisor. Johnson will report to owner Jeanie Buss on all matters concerning business and basketball.
Johnson played 13 seasons with the Lakers, winning five NBA championships, three MVP awards, and making 12 All-Star appearances. Last year, Johnson was removed from his ceremonious Vice President title with the team.
Per Lakers.com, Magic will be “advising ownership on all business and basketball matters, collaborating with coaches, evaluating and mentoring players, assessing future franchise needs, and helping ownership to determine the best path for growth and success.”
Jeanie Buss, Adam Silver, and Magic Johnson himself all spoke on his return to the Lakers. The following quotes are from Lakers.com:
Jeanie Buss: “We are thrilled and honored to add Magic’s expertise and abilities, and I look forward to working alongside him.”
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver: “Magic Johnson is one of the NBA’s greatest players and it is terrific to see him returning to the Lakers. He is a truly special person and a natural leader with a relentless passion for basketball and profound knowledge of the game.”
Magic Johnson: “Everyone knows my love for the Lakers. Over the years, I have considered other management opportunities, however my devotion to the game and Los Angeles make the Lakers my first and only choice. I will do everything in my power to help return the Lakers to their rightful place among the elite teams of the NBA.”
Magic was seen with the Lakers’ owner Buss and his agent on January 17th, which brought mass-speculation to whether Johnson would be returning to the team in some capacity. The Lakers can use Johnson in as a face of the organization in free agent meetings, as a mentor to second-year guard D’Angelo Russell, and can finally teach him how to tweet. Okay, the last one is a joke.
We’ll have to see how Johnson’s new role with the team unfolds, as it is far too early to jump to any conclusions to whether it is a good or bad move. Time will tell. It is best, although not easy, to stay patient. But, for now– welcome back, Magic.