To save the family business, Jeanie Buss took her heart out of the equation, firing big brother Jim and long time Laker GM, Mitch Kupchak.
After years agonizing over mistakes and missed opportunities, Buss could no longer defend the damaging decisions that have been done, even offering a mea culpa to the fans for not pulling the trigger sooner.
The catalyst that set it off was Kupchak’s DeMarcus Cousins debacle. LA, a team whose raw talent is hot and cold more often than a roomful of menopausal women, could ill afford holding onto rookie Brandon Ingram, at the expense of losing the Sacramento star.
That botched trade deal, along with pissing away $136 million on four-year contracts to Timofey Mosgov and Luol Deng who, combined, are averaging 15.2 points and 10.3 rebounds.
This past weekend did not bode well for Buss, as LA was a no show at the NBA All-Star game in New Orleans, the first time since 1996 the team that Jeanie’s daddy built did not have one Laker in the line-up.
And with the 2018 All-Star bash being played on LA soil, the boss turns to Laker legend Magic Johnson to help put the “Showtime” pieces back together again.
The new Lakers’ president of basketball operations, whose advisory role lasted as long as Michael Flynn, is putting his businesses on the back burner to help rebuild the franchise that made him famous.
Magic steps into his new role with Thursday’s trade deadline looming – fans hoping the Hall of Famer’s clout will land a couple of marquee players.
He’s already wasted no time looking toward the future, shipping sixth man, sweet Lou Williams to Houston in exchange for Corey Brewer, and a 2017 first-round pick to be named later. Also hiring Kobe Bryant’s super agent, Rob Pelinka as Kupchak’s replacement.
Who knows, maybe Bryant will suit up in an off the court position, and along with Johnson, bring some veteran muscle tone to this atrophied organization.