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Los Angeles Lakers: Jeanie Buss discusses the future, Kobe Bryant

Monday 20 August, 2018 | RSS Feed

Los Angeles Lakers: Jeanie Buss discusses the future, Kobe Bryant

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Los Angeles Lakers controlling owner Jeanie Buss, or who I call Boss Lady Buss, sat down with Rich Eisen in his DIRECTV studio in El Segundo, right behind the Lakers offices, to discuss Magic Johnson, LeBron James, and her team.

She has full faith in Magic Johnson as well as head coach Luke Walton who got everyone to buy into his vision. She is happy that the organization is cohesive and is heading in the right direction. “I have complete in him, that he will make decisions that will get us there,” said Buss.
Jeanie and Magic were raised by the same father so to speak. Magic wanted to learn about the business of the NBA from Dr. Buss. She feels like that’s why they see things the same way because the learned to endear the same philosophy.

The two met when Magic was 19, and she was 17, and he told her that he was only staying with the Lakers for three years until he could make it back home to his home team, the Detroit Pistons. When she told Dr. Buss, he assured her that the first time he steps on the Lakers court in the Forum, he would never look back.
Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka have exceeded her expectations with the cap space advancements, and with Magic catching or signing the big fish, LeBron James. She’s happy with the draft picks, with the development of those players such as Brandon Ingram, Kyle Kuzma, Lonzo Ball and Josh Hart.

When Magic came on board, according to Buss, things calmed down. The Lakers organization is cohesive now, stable and she is very happy with her decision to change the front office.

Buss was hands-off when it came to negotiations with the King of the NBA. She believes in Johnson. She didn’t delegate the task to him, she “empowered” the Lakers legend.
Buss divulges how the meeting with LeBron James and Magic Johnson went down and how she heard about the King’s agreement to join the Purple and Gold.

The night Magic talked to LeBron, she didn’t know where the meeting took place but got a text from Magic saying, “Had a great conversation and we will see what happens.”
Buss got a text shortly after on her phone from LeBron’s agent Rich Paul. It said simply, “Congratulations.”
She said she got choked up thinking about the patient fans and what it would have meant to her father, Dr. Buss. She felt “Honored and validated.” She could now present a product to Los Angeles that they expect.

She has only had one brief conversation during a workout, and she cut it short because he was shirtless and sweating, and she was a bit nervous. Well, Jeanie, that never stops me, haha! But I am not the boss of the hoopers I interview, so I totally get it.

Buss likes that James invests in young people in his community trying to make a change becoming a leader in life. She loves the things that James has chosen to stand up for. The measuring stick for James, according to Jeanie, is nothing short of everything.

“For the Laker Organization we are not going to rest until we are proud,” said Jeanie, “Magic has brought championships and pride as a player, and I expect the same from him [James] as, you know, the face of our franchise. We want to win!”

Buss knows winning a championship is as rare as “lightning striking,” but she wants her team to be part of the conversation. She feels her team can’t get to the Championships if they don’t make the playoffs.

On Kobe fans not necessarily happy about LeBron coming to Los Angeles, Jeanie explained that Kobe is excited. “Kobe has been an inspiration for me, he’s given me his time, his wisdom — he’s a very strategic thinker,” said Buss. The two had a conversation about bravery, guts, and courage.

Kobe texted Jeanie a meme from the Game of Thrones depicting the Mother of Dragons, Khaleesi after the LeBron news hit the net. Kobe felt she had to learn to be that character. She wrote back, “you allowed me to see what I couldn’t — that I would make hard decisions.”

Buss wouldn’t comment on Lonzo Ball competing with Rajon Rondo for the starting point guard spot but did say that Rondo’s experience and a strong contributor who is consistent is what the team needs.

On Luke, she feels that he can connect with people in a way she hasn’t seen, he’s a good people person, and players buy into his vision. She felt bad that she couldn’t give Luke the players he needed to make it into the postseason. Well, that ain’t the case anymore.

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