Magic Johnson blasts Lakers GM Rob Pelinka after shock exit

first_imgDon’t miss out on the latest news and information. Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too James later voiced dismay about Johnson’s failure to give him a forewarning before his abrupt departure.“I respect LeBron for what he just said,” Johnson said on Monday.“I love LeBron, I love his family … but sometimes as a man, you have to make decisions based on your well-being. And I made that decision.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport MOST READ Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting LATEST STORIES Johnson said he had grown increasingly unhappy after being made aware of a whispering campaign he believes Pelinka orchestrated.“I start hearing ‘Magic you’re not working hard enough, Magic is not in the office,’ so people around the Laker office was telling me Rob was saying things,” Johnson said.READ: Magic Johnson steps down as Los Angeles Lakers president“And I didn’t like those things being said behind my back, that I wasn’t in the office enough and so on. So I started getting calls from my friends outside of basketball (operations) saying those things was being said to them outside of basketball. Not just in the Laker office, in the media,” he added.Pelinka meanwhile denied Johnson’s comments later Monday, saying the allegations of backstabbing “simply aren’t true”.ADVERTISEMENT DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew FILE – Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Rob Pelinka discuss the upcoming Los Angeles Lakers’ season at UCLA Health Training Center on September 20, 2018 in El Segundo, California. Meg Oliphant/Getty Images/AFPFormer Los Angeles Lakers executive Magic Johnson said a breakdown in relations with the team’s general manager Rob Pelinka contributed to his shock exit from the NBA franchise.Johnson stunned the NBA on April 9 after dramatically quitting from his post as president of basketball operations at the struggling former powerhouses.ADVERTISEMENT Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess A break, then NBA Finals: Warriors eager for some time off PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue The move caught the team’s ownership and star player LeBron James by surprise, with Johnson giving no clue beforehand that he planned to leave.READ: LeBron not OK with Magic’s ‘weird’ departure from Lakers FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsOn Monday, Johnson told ESPN he had stepped down because of his fractured relationship with Pelinka, accusing the Lakers GM of undermining him.“I wasn’t having fun coming to work anymore,” the Lakers legend told ESPN’s First Take. “Especially when I gotta work beside [Pelinka], knowing that you want my position.” “Truly, it’s saddening and disheartening to think he believes things are a misperception,” Pelinka said.“I think all of us in life probably have been through things where maybe there are third-party whispers that aren’t true,” Pelinka added. “But I look forward to the opportunity to talk to (Johnson), sit down with him and work through them just like any relationship because they simply aren’t true.”Final strawJohnson earlier said the final straw came when Lakers owner Jeanie Buss did not back his request to fire head coach Luke Walton.“We had three meetings,” he said. “I showed (Buss) the things he did well, and the things he didn’t do well. I said ‘We’ve gotta get a better coach’.”Buss initially agreed to let Walton go, but then backtracked after a final meeting with Johnson and chief operating officer Tim Harris, who wanted Walton to stay.READ: Magic Johnson on abrupt resignation as Lakers chief:  I want to go back to having fun“It’s time for me to go. I’ve got things being said behind my back, I don’t have the power to make decisions,” Johnson said.“And I’d told them in the beginning when it’s not fun for me, and I don’t have the decision-making power, I’ve gotta step aside.”Johnson’s decision to go public with his grievances is the latest drama to embroil the Lakers, whose season veered off the rails after star recruit James was injured in December. The Lakers missed the playoffs for a sixth straight season. View commentslast_img

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