Magic Johnson and Isiah Thomas were once best friends. They were one of the most recognizable duos on opposing teams that actually liked each other, in an era where it wasn’t popular to make such a sentiment known.
Then, it all went downhill.
Johnson and Thomas’ relationship deteriorated starting in the late 1980s, when the Detroit Pistons and Los Angeles Lakers played each other in two consecutive NBA Finals. In Game 3 of the ’88 Finals the two got into a tussle, and after the Pistons beat LA in ’89, their relationship seemed over.
Johnson famously helped keep Thomas off the 1992 Dream Team, which has always sat wrong with both Thomas and NBA fans. Johnson admitted that he helped keep Thomas off the Dream Team in part because he says Thomas spread a rumor that he was bisexual or gay. So, the two have been frosty for a minute.
The two reunited in a special that aired after games ended on NBATV on Tuesday, and the two seemed to make nice and genuinely come to a moment of peace with each other.
That’s one of the more interesting moments of NBA programming — and that’s saying something — that we’ve seen outside the court in a while.