LA Lakers News: Magic Johnson Reveals Just How He Won Over LeBron James To Leave Cleveland
When it comes to the legends of the game, one knew exactly how to win over the other.
Looking back at the storied past of the Los Angeles Lakers, Magic Johnson is easily one of the names that first come to mind. That doesn’t mean anyone won’t remember Jerry West, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, James Worthy, Kobe Bryant, and many others first either. Now, LeBron James has been added to that legacy of icons and NBA legends, and Magic Johnson has revealed just what he said and did to win over “The King.”
When LeBron James left the Cleveland Cavaliers for the Miami Heat, it was a huge ordeal that was turned into something known as “The Decision.” His departure from the Cavs this time around didn’t have nearly as much fanfare, but it may have been an even bigger move than his first time leaving the organization.
Everyone thought there were at least four or five locations where James could end up and that included back in Cleveland. Not long after the 2018 NBA free agency season opened, though, he revealed that his time with the Cavs was officially over and he was signing with the LA Lakers.
But how did Magic Johnson, the president of basketball operations for the Lakers, end up winning over one of the greatest players of all time?
According to USA Today, Magic Johnson didn’t just pitch money or the brilliance of Los Angeles to win over LeBron James. No, Johnson told LBJ that having him on the team would be all about winning as that is what the history of the Los Angeles Lakers is all about.
On top of that, he told James that the focus of the team would be the future Hall of Famer leading a young team of great athletes.
“I asked him what his expectations are, and he said he understood where we were, as an organization, as a team, and what we’re building. He was really happy that Rob and I were not rushing, not making mistakes by rushing, and I told him that we had a three-year plan, we had a plan that we wanted to execute and that he could really take that plan to a whole ‘nother level.”
Over the course of the last four or five years, the LA Lakers have not been an overly successful team, but the hope is that the arrival of James will change all of that.
- 2017 – 2018: 35 wins
- 2016 – 2017: 26 wins
- 2015 – 2016: 17 wins
- 2014 – 2015: 21 wins
- 2013 – 2014: 27 wins
The last winning season for the LA Lakers was back in 2012-13 season when they finished with a record of 45-37. In the playoffs, they were swept by the eventual Western Conference champion San Antonio Spurs. Magic Johnson was a huge part of the winning ways of the Lakers back during a different era in the NBA, and now, he believes LeBron James can do the same for Los Angeles during the possible final stages of his career.
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