Magic Johnson has had quite the career after his Michigan State basketball playing days. What’s he up to now and what’s next?
In light of the college basketball season ending with Virginia’s wild finish in the championship game, the NBA is just starting its playoffs. Michigan State has three former players in the playoffs right now with a few of them who just missed the line by a few games. Michigan State also has some great players who are not in the league but still affiliated with the league.
Each week I am going to write about one of those types of players (current and former) and how their NBA careers are going or went and what they are up to now.
We’ll start with Magic Johnson.
We all know the career Magic had. He led Michigan State to the national title game and helped them topple Larry Bird and Indiana State in order to take home the first championship in school history. Magic went on to be drafted No. 1 overall by the Lakers joining him with the 7-foot-2 phenom Kareem Abdul Jabar.
Johnson was part of the legendary Showtime era when the Lakers and the Celtics where arch-rivals for most of the 1980s as it was those two teams who were battling in the NBA Finals every year. Magic, in his 13-year career with the Lakers, won five championships. Was a three-time NBA Finals and NBA MVP and was an All-Star in 12 of his 13 years in the league.
Fast forward to the last 10 years. Magic is now a co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers. He has been a co-owner for the Dodgers since 2012. He has been a supporter for the Dodgers long before that but he can now help manage the team. He spent a fortune to co-own the team and he’s loved it.
Johnson has also been a huge help to the Michigan State Spartans and teaching the guys what he has experienced. He frequently visits the team during practices to give them advice of what the big games will be like when they actually get there. He also gives them some scouting reports and normally says the same thing as Tom Izzo but hearing it come from a legend like Magic is always helpful. He will most likely continue to help the Spartans out in many ways years to come.
The biggest storyline heading into this week surrounding Magic Johnson was how he stepped down from being the President of Basketball Operations for the Lakers on April 9, 2019. He took the job after the passing of Jim Buss on February 21, 2017. He was expecting to help turn the franchise around and was involved in bringing in LeBron James.
However, in a press conference he held on April 9, he admitted that he likes to be free. He also likes to have fun — and clearly losing is not fun. He has a legacy to uphold. He has been apart of this Laker organization since he was drafted. He was apart of the Showtime era Lakers and he does not want to taint his legacy of that with a legacy of how he could not get the program to a level of contention again.
Although he held a press conference. Magic blindsided many when he stated that he was stepping down though he did not reach out to anyone before this to let them know. He did not want to face Jeanie Buss because it would devastate her.
Buss understood, though, and said through Twitter, “Earvin, I loved working side by side with you. You’ve brought us a long way. We will continue the journey. We love you.” So there are no hurt feeling by anyone who is involved.
We will have to wait and see what is next for the former NBA All-Star and his career. Johnson has joined the efforts with Ice Cube to acquire Fox Sports from Disney. What they will do with it is up in the air but getting this into the hands of sports fans is only going to be better for everyone.