Los Angeles Lakers legend Earvin “Magic” Johnson protects the family. Though many outside voices and disgruntled fans want the team to trade LeBron James after the the dismal 2021-22 season, Johnson has come out to defend James.
Johnson recently told TMZ Sports that he hopes James remains with the Lakers “for a long time.”
Johnson’s confidence is nice, but James’ on-court performance speaks for itself. Although the Lakers finished in 11th place in the Western Conference and missed the playoffs entirely, and although James sat out many games because of injury, James still managed to average over 30 points a game last season, per TMZ Sports.
That’s not to say that James bears no responsibility for the horrific results. OutKick’s Sam Amico says that while James tried once again to recruit a super team in LA, the way he once did in Miami and Cleveland, he doesn’t have the roster savvy he once had.
“Everyone is at the mercy of the team that LeBron James built, and James’ roster management skills are eroding,” Amico says.
But as far as Magic Johnson is concerned, James, 37, can stick around for as long as he likes.
And James isn’t the only Laker Johnson has defended lately. Late last month, Johnson spoke highly of former coach and Lakers executive Jerry West, who resents the way he has been represented in the recent HBO series Winning Time.
Johnson tweeted, among other things, that West “means so much to the Lakers organization.”
NBA Championships, trading for Kobe, & working with Dr. Buss to bring Shaq to LA. Jerry helped develop us on the court as basketball players & off the court as men, a reason he remains close to a lot of former Lakers today, including me. The article is a must read!
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) April 24, 2022
So Johnson has a habit of defending his own, first West and now James. The Spartan legend who still bleeds Green and White also bleeds Purple and Gold. And that kind of fierce loyalty is nice to see.