Rob Pelinka celebrates Lakers title by calling Magic Johnson

Magic Johnson and Lakers general manager Rob Pelinka
David Santiago/Miami Herald/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Magic Johnson went on national television and accused Rob Pelinka of betrayal.

One season later, and the Lakers are NBA champions.


I still have such gratitude for the two seasons I got to work with Earvin, and he’s definitely a part of tonight with his vision and working side by side. He’s an unbelievable person, and we have a great, incredibly strong relationship. He was one of the first calls tonight. Had a great talk with him.


As team president, Johnson positioned the Lakers to get LeBron James then completely flubbed building around LeBron. After Johnson resigned, Pelinka – the Lakers’ general manager – did a far better job surrounding LeBron with talent, especially completing the Anthony Davis trade.

The front-office partnership, as messy as it was, proved incredibly effective.

Now, the rift appears over. This is partially a case of winning curing most ills, partially a case of Johnson loving life and the Lakers too much to hold a grudge.