Magic Johnson fires strong message at Lakers GM Rob Pelinka
Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson sent a message to the franchise’s General Manager Rob Pelinka after their early playoff ouster. But this isn’t just a team’s icon venting frustration, as these two have a history.
Magic called out the underperformance of several Lakers on the roster, one constructed specifically by Pelinka himself. LA was definitely going to revamp their roster regardless. But Johnson’s making sure the message gets to the Purple and Gold’s decision-maker.
Lakers GM Rob Pelinka has a lot of work to do this summer because a lot of Lakers did not perform well during the series against the Phoenix Suns.
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) June 4, 2021
You might recall just a few years ago when Magic Johnson served as the team’s president of basketball operations. He eventually stepped down and cited he was unhappy being in the role he was in. When asked about the resignation, Johnson specifically noted something he didn’t appreciate – backstabbing and whispering. He then went on to list the people he enjoyed working with during that time. A name conspicuously off that list was GM Rob Pelinka.
Via Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today:
“What I didn’t like was the backstabbing and the whispering. I don’t like that,” Johnson told reporters after stepping down. “I don’t like a lot of things that went on that didn’t have to go on. And so I hope that after tomorrow the Lakers can head in the right direction, which we are. Injuries really hurt us. But I enjoyed working with Jeanie side-by-side.
“I enjoyed working with Linda (Rambis). Tim [Harris] and I had some good times. The brothers were outstanding as well, working with Jesse and Joey (Buss).”
The two have since reconciled their differences, especially after the Lakers won the championship last season. It’s hard to stay mad when you’re on top of the world, after all. But it’s hard to imagine that their relationship has gotten to anything more than civil after going through a public ordeal like that.