By: Kylan Watson
The Los Angeles Lakers have been struggling for the past three seasons, as the franchise has had back to back to back losing seasons. The franchise is in the midst of its fourth losing season, enter Magic Johnson to save the franchise that made him a basketball icon. Johnson was named the President of Basketball Operations for the Lakers by Jeanie Buss. This may be the best decision the Lakers have made in years and could be the turning point, for a franchise that is wading in a sea of mediocrity.
Last Tuesday the Lakers fired Co-Owner and Executive Vice-President Jim Buss and General Manager Mitch Kupchak. Kupchak and Buss have been largely responsible for the four losing seasons the Lakers have had. Both of them have failed to sign big-time free agents and pull off trades for a big-time player. The Lakers were almost able to acquire DeMarcus Cousins from the Kings. However, Kupchak and Buss refused to trade forward Brandon Ingram. So the trade fell through, this refusal to trade is indicative of a bigger problem for the Lakers. The Lakers are not an appealing franchise anymore. The Lakers used to be an appealing team for a potential free agent or someone on the trading block. However, those days are gone for the Lakers. Kupchak and Buss’ lack of impact forced the Lakers to hire someone who knows basketball and can bring a change to the franchise, and that is where Magic Johnson can make a huge difference for the Lakers.
Johnson is a five-time champion and co-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers and he might be the most beloved Laker in franchise history. Magic Johnson can definitely bring his business acumen and knowledge of basketball to help the Lakers. Johnson can definitely bring big-time free agents to the Lakers because who would turn down a meeting with basketball icon Magic Johnson. The Lakers have obviously upgraded by hiring Johnson.
Johnson was able to make a trade last week, as he traded shooting guard Lou Williams to the Rockets for Corey Brewer and the Rockets first round pick in 2017. By making this trade Johnson brought a good defender and veteran leader to a very young team. Lakers fans should be really excited for what Johnson can do as the President of Basketball Operations for the Lakers.
This is Johnson’s first chance at being a General Manager in basketball. Fans and experts should hope that he becomes a great GM like rival Larry Bird. Time will tell for Magic Johnson, but he will have to manage his own expectations. Magic’s takeover of the Lakers is the stuff of legend, but he needs to show results immediately, in order to satisfy a starving fan base.