During ESPN’s pregame show Friday, Magic Johnson said he would put up $1 million for LeBron James to do the dunk contest. He then somewhat changed his stance by offering $1 million to the winner if James participates, making the offer more of a purse than appearance fee for King James.
“Please, LeBron, get in the dunk contest. I’m going to put up a million dollars,” Johnson said on ESPN’s Kia NBA Countdown. “A million dollars from Magic to LeBron. Please get in the dunk contest. I go every year. I want to see you out there. A million to the winner.”
Check out “The Disappearing Act”, one of two new NBA BIG commercials directed by Spike Lee, featuring Magic Johnson, Steve Nash, and Chris Paul. CP3 bursts on and off the court in a puff of smoke, so fast that at one point he leaves the court and appears at a table in a diner with other point guard greats, Magic and Nash.
Latina Thomas, a former flight attendant on Magic Johnson’s jet, is suing the Hall of Famer for wrongful termination.
Thomas claims she was let go for being seven minutes late for a flight and claims she was tardy because Johnson requires two different types of turkey meat for his sandwich and she was held up at the deli counter.
The 45-year-old Thomas, who made $75,000 plus a $25,000 bonus, is suing Magic Johnson Entertainment and Clay Lacy Aviation for age discrimination among other labor code violations. There are claims that she was denied rest breaks and overtime.
Thomas said after she returned from medical leave Johnson became “more standoffish and dismissive” and shortly after was fired for being late for a Sept. 6 flight.
David Stern will retire as NBA commissioner on Feb. 1, 2014 after 30 years on the job, the league announced announced on Thursday. Stern’s replacement: deputy commissioner Adam Silver, who was unanimously approved to take the position, according to multiple reports.
“I’d like to think I did an adequate job,” Stern said at his state-of-the-league press conference shortly after the news was announced. He added that he “could not be happier” knowing that Silver would take his place.
“Adam’s title will be the commissioner elect, but they’re still going to have me to kick around for the next 15 months,” Stern said.
Stern, 70, took over as commissioner on Feb. 1, 1984, as Magic Johnson and Larry Bird were peaking, and Michael Jordan was set to enter the league. He presided over the NBA’s growth from a financially strapped sport to a global commercial powerhouse.
No living room is complete without a life-sized oil painting of Shaq and now you can own a painting of the Big Diesel. The painting is valued at $100,000, but act now and you can own this masterpiece for $3,995 according to the Craigslist post.
Not a fan of Shaquille O’Neal then buy a painting of Magic Johnson, Yao Ming, Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant, among others.
Rihanna was chilling on a boat over the weekend with her girls and decided to take a picture to remember the occasion however thats when Los Angeles Lakers great and Los Angeles Dodgers owner Magic Johnson stumbled into the frame and photo bombed her and her crew.
After winning a NBA championship things go crazy in a blink of a second and things get hectic so it’s no surprise things can can come up missing. That’s exactly what happened to newly crowned NBA champ LeBron James.
He was sure once he won he would be sobbing like Michael Jordan but responded more like Magic Johnson hopping up and down on the sideline ready to spray champagne and unleashed a smile that no one but family and friends have glimpsed since the whole Decision fiasco.
But after James retreated to the locker room, where teammates bathed him in a Budweiser, Dom Perignon, he caught a scare. He couldn’t find his Finals MVP trophy.
“Where’s my trophy?” James hollered, rummaging through his locker. “I left it right here!” He rushed through the tunnel back to the court, where he had to give an interview, but the moment it ended he asked, “Have you seen my trophy? Who took my trophy?” On the way to the press conference, where the MVP trophy was waiting all along, he relaxed a bit. “It’s just an individual award, anyway,” he says. “It’s not the one that matters.”
In Jack McCallum’s, a 30-year Sports Illustrated veteran, book “Dream Team” Clyde Drexler said Magic Johnson only earned a spot on the Olympic team and the MVP award in the 1992 All-Star game out of pity resulting from his HIV diagnosis the previous year.
“He couldn’t play much by that time. He couldn’t guard his shadow,” Drexler is quoted as saying in the book. “But you have to understand what was going on then. Everybody kept waiting for Magic to die. Every time he’d run up the court everybody would feel sorry for the guy, and he’d get all that benefit of the doubt.”
McCallum interviewed Drexler at his home and got the sense that Drexler felt snubbed when he wasn’t one of the first 10 players named to the much-celebrated team. He was added to the team later, along with Duke’s Christian Laettner.
McCallum said he didn’t feel comfortable writing about what Drexler said, but he stands by the quote and his book is due out on July 10.
NBA 2K 13 pulled out all the stops and landed Oklahoma City Thunder Kevin Durant, Chicago Bulls Derrick Rose, and Los Angeles Clippers Blake Griffin for this year’s cover.
“Being crowned as one of the NBA 2K13 cover athletes is a great way to cap off what has been an amazing season,” Durant said. “It’s humbling to grace the cover after the likes of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.”
“There’s so much young talent around the NBA, so it’s very exciting to be chosen for NBA 2K’s ‘New Dynasty’ alongside Kevin and Derrick,” said Griffin.
“The NBA 2K series has always been my first choice when I want to get a game in.” “It’s a dream come true to be one of the cover athletes for NBA 2K13,” Rose added. “I’ve worked closely with 2K Sports since NBA 2K10, and I’m honored to follow in the footsteps of Michael Jordan as the latest Chicago Bull to be featured on the cover.”
Yesterday Major League Baseball made the Los Angeles Dodgers sale Mark Walter, former Atlanta Braves President Stan Kasten and former NBA player Magic Johnson complete.
To celebrate Johnson showed off his little friend, also named Magic Johnson. He posted the image of him and his bobblehead doll to his WhoSay page but the this bobblehead was not part of any future promotional giveaway.
Johnson just had always wanted his own bobblehead and now made it a reality.
Despite his close friendship with bidder Magic Johnson, Patrick Soon-Shiong has joined hedge-fund billionaire Steven Cohen’s bid for the team, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Because Soon-Shiong is the richest man in Los Angeles, he’s believed to be the golden ticket that will determine the team’s next owner. Now that Cohen has Soon-Shiong behind him, they may be an insurmountable team.
Because Soon-Shiong bought a minority share in the Los Angeles Lakers from Johnson two years ago, it was believed by some that Soon-Shiong would team up with Magic. Although Johnson had the highest bid at $1.6 billion, Cohen’s $1.4 billion bid impressed many because $900 million of it is cash, Biz of Baseball reports. Now, with Soon-Shiong on his team, Cohen’s bid, which may end up at $2 billion, has the most green by far.
Soon-Shiong, who is a doctor, biotech investor and philanthropist, has a net worth of $7.2 billion, and Cohen’s net worth is $8.3 billion, according to Forbes’ 2012 billionaires list.
Soon-Shiong also gives Cohen’s bid some much-needed LA cred. Cohen needs it because he lives in Connecticut, grew up a New York Mets fan and there are unconfirmed rumors that he hasn’t even stepped foot in Dodgers Stadium, Lasondra’s Lair points out. If Cohen wins the team, LA agent Arn Tellem is expected to become company president, and former baseball manager and infielder Tony La Russa will likely to be in charge of baseball operations.
Johnson’s last hope may be to appeal to Frank McCourt, who makes the final ownership decision. As CBS speculates, “Johnson might have the best chance to help [McCourt] there if Johnson is willing to try to boost him publicly by somehow claiming McCourt isn’t the person everyone already knows him to be.”
Others, however, think that McCourt will simply go with the highest bidder in the end, and the end is drawing near. McCourt has to pick the winner by April 1 and close the deal by April 30.
The group led by Joe Torre has withdrawn its bid to purchase the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Los Angeles Times reported. According to the report, owner Frank McCourt’s refusal to include the Dodger Stadium parking lots in the sale was a major sticking point.
Torre’s partners include Los Angeles developer Rick Caruso and investor Byron Trott of BDT Capital. The remaining bidders, now believed to number nine and include a group headed by Magic Johnson, have been requested to submit a second bid this week.
McCourt must select a winning bidder by April 1 with the sale closing by April 30, the day he must pay former wife Jamie McCourt a $131 million divorce settlement.
ESPN is moving its NBA pregame show to Los Angeles under a new studio sponsered by Kia but that won’t be the only change for the studio show. ESPN is also going hostless, so there will be no more of Stuart Scott or Hannah Storm.
The show’s game plan will focus on Magic Johnson, who will regularly be in ESPN’s NBA studio after he appeared only occasionally in past years, mainly on Christmas Day and during the post-season.Jon Barry and Michael Wilbon will return to the show but it will have a newcomer in reporter Chris Broussard.
Charles Barkley will not appear in NBA 2K12 because the former player and videogame company could not come to terms on a deal. The company wanted Barkley to be part of NBA 2K12, which will include a mode called NBA’s Greatest that will feature the league’s top 15 players of all-time and several classic rivalries, but the deal was held up by money and promotion.
Larry Bird, Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan will appear on three separate covers for the game however Barkley insisted that he get a cover as well. The Philadelphia 76ers of 1984-85, Barkley’s rookie season, is one of NBA 2K12’s great teams showing that 2K had every intention to use Barkley in the title and was confident that it would get a deal done but things fell apart on Barkley’s end.
“There’s no doubt in our minds that Charles is and should always be a key part of the conversation as it relates to who are the NBA’s Greatest players of all time,” a 2K Sports spokesperson said. “We have a very positive relationship with Sir Charles and while we were unable to include him in-game this year for a variety of reasons, we share everyone’s hope that he may one day appear in our game.”
During a sit down with the Los Angeles Times, Magic Johnson expressed regret over retiring immediately after he learned that he had contracted the HIV virus.
“If I knew what I know now, I wouldn’t have retired,” he said.
Johnson’s sudden retirement announcement in the fall of 1991 remains one of the most shocking moments in sports history. During the interview Johnson also expressed the betrayal he felt when some of his fellow players expressed an unwillingness to play against him.
“I had just played with these guys at the Olympics,” Johnson said. “Then I get back home and said I’m coming back to the NBA and the same guys that I went to war with in the Olympics came out and said ‘No, I think I’m going to get HIV.’”
Johnson played in the NBA for 13 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers and was inducted into the Pro Basketball Hall Of Fame in 2002.
This time basketball Hall of Famer Michael Jordan won’t be the only one to cover a 2K Sports basketball video game. The video game company announced on Thursday that he will be joined by two other Hall of Famers in Magic Johnson, Larry Bird. Each will be featured in three separate covers on the front of “NBA 2K12,” the latest installment of the best-selling basketball video game franchise.
Last year, Jordan was the cover athlete for 2K’s NBA game, which has sold more than 5 million units. Jordan also worked closely with the game’s developers, providing his input on details such as player’s shot technique.
NBA 2K12 is expected to go on sale October 4.
Alex Cohen has definitely brought back the beer pong slam dunk contest back to the good old days of Dominique Wilkins, Michael Jordan, Dr. J and Spud Webb wouldn’t you say Magic Johnson?
The great Shaquille O’Neal retired yesterday from the NBA after 19 season and the Los Angeles Lakers have quickly recognized the significance of his tenure with their organization has released a statement saying they will retire his jersey. The Lakers plan to honor their former self-proclaimed Superman by raising his No. 34 jersey to the rafters in the Staples Center.
“We don’t have any specific timetable on this, but you can be assured we will retire Shaq’s jersey,” said Lakers spokesman John Black in an email on Wednesday. As you know, players have to wait five years to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but we could possibly do a jersey retirement ceremony for Shaq prior to that.”
The Lakers will not purposefully hold off on O’Neal’s jersey retirement until Kobe Bryant’s jersey is retired, either.
“At this point in time I’d guess there’s a really good chance that Kobe will still be playing in five years, and by that time Shaq will be elected to the HOF and we will have retired his jersey,” Black wrote.
O’Neal enjoyed the the bulk of the success during his 19-year NBA career in the eight seasons he spent in Los Angeles from 1996-2004, winning his lone regular season MVP award in 1999-00 and three consecutive Finals MVPs from 2000-02. He retired with career averages of 23.7 points, 10.9 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.3 blocks per game on 58.2 percent shooting, but his numbers jumped to 27 points, 11.8 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 2.5 blocks in 514 regular season games played in L.A.
O’Neal would become the eighth player in Lakers franchise history to have his jersey retired, joining Wilt Chamberlain (No. 13), Elgin Baylor (No. 22), Gail Goodrich (No. 25), Magic Johnson (No. 32), Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (No. 33), James Worthy (No. 42) and Jerry West (No. 44). All seven are in the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
O’Neal wore No. 33 in high school at Cole then continued to wear it at LSU then switched to No. 32 in Orlando to start his career, but had to change to No. 34 when arriving in L.A. because of Johnson and Abdul-Jabbar. He went back to No. 32 in Miami and Phoenix. He also wore No. 33 in Cleveland and No. 36 in Boston to finish his career.
Straight from the good people at Tauntr.com come the NBA’s top 5 Finals moments in Lego form. Everything from Gar Heard in the old Boston Garden, Julius Erving’s baseline scoop, Magic Johnson’s skyhook, to Vinnie Johnson and of course Michael Jordan’s shot.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the leading scorer in NBA history and was selected to a record 19 All-Star teams as well as winning six world championships, five of them for the Los Angeles Lakers, all the while after bringing three national titles to the city when he was at UCLA. But after accomplishing all that for the Lakers and the city of Los Angeles there is one thing missing from the NBA Hall of Famer resume and that’s a statue at the Staples Center.
Abdul-Jabbar says he feels as if he’s been slighted by the Lakers failure to build a statue outside Staples Center of him since they already have five in front of the arena. Those five include Lakers great Magic Johnson, Jerry West and Chick Hern but as well as Wayne Gretzky and Oscar De La Hoya.
“I don’t understand (it). It’s either an oversight or they’re taking me for granted. I’m not going to try to read people’s minds, but it doesn’t make me happy. It’s definitely a slight. I feel slighted. I am highly offended by the total lack of acknowledgement of my contribution to Laker success. I guess being the lynchpin for five world championships is not considered significant enough in terms of being part of Laker history.”
The Lakers offered this response:
“Whenever we do the next statue of the third Los Angeles Lakers player, it (will be) Kareem and he has been told that. Again, we didn’t say when that was going to be. It could be next year, the year after or several years from now.”
In an interview with FoxSports Bill Reiter, former NBA great Isiah Thomas spoke about how his game compared to those of Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson and Larry Bird.
“I have no problem saying this at all,” he says. “Magic Johnson and Larry Bird are all 6-feet-9 and Jordan was 6-6 and a half. If they were all 6-1, it wouldn’t even be a question. They wouldn’t even fucking rate. If they were all my size, shit, they wouldn’t even be talked about.”
“I beat the shit out of them when they were that big. If we were all the same size, fuck.” He stops to laugh good-naturedly. “Make them 6-1 and let’s go on the court.”
In basketball, there’s an obvious advantage to being tall, but if it were the only quality necessary to be great, Gheorghe Mureşan would have been a Hall of Famer.
Fran Kirmser and Tony Ponturo, the Producers of Lombardi play currently running on Broadway are embarking on their next collaboration called MAGIC/BIRD. It will be a new play that chronicles the intertwined life stories of two of the most influential figures in sports and pop culture of the past 25 years, basketball Hall of Famers Larry Bird and Earvin ‘Magic’ Johnson. The play will be produced in association with the National Basketball Association and Johnson and Bird themselves will participate in the creative process of this completely original play.
At the heart of one of the fiercest rivalries in sports history, two of the greatest basketball players of all-time battled for three championships, bragging rights, and the future of their sport in the 1980s. Johnson and Bird electrified the nation on the court, reinvigorated the NBA, and turned their rivalry into one of the greatest and most famous friendships in professional sports. The play, with a six character cast, is scheduled to debut on Broadway in 2012.
Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson told Jimmy Kimmel on Tuesday night that he is working to bring an NFL team to L.A.
A day after he sold his interest in the Los Angeles Lakers, Magic Johnson has also sold 105 of his Starbucks back to the company. The Hall of Famer liquidating his assets doesn’t indicate he’s interested in pursuing another NBA team right now, but he does have an eye toward acquiring something “in sports” in the future. Johnson had been rumored to be interested in buying the Golden State Warriors or Detroit Pistons, but according to insiders that was never the case. The Warriors and Pistons have been sold.
Johnson sold his 4.5% ownership stake in the Lakers to billionaire season-ticket holder Patrick Soon-Shiong, terms of that deal were not released. Various publications valued the Lakers worth at $600 million and Johnson’s stake had an estimated value of $27 million.
The two sales combined were worth more than $100 million to Johnson.