NBA

Lakers back Brown after Magic's remark

Share This Story

   
 

LOS ANGELES (AP)

The Lakers issued a statement publicly backing Mike Brown on Saturday after Magic Johnson declared the first-year head coach would be fired if Los Angeles lost Game 7 of its first-round playoff series with Denver.

The club issued its statement a few hours before the third-seeded Lakers hosted the Nuggets in the series finale.

Johnson spoke Friday night on ESPN, where he serves as an analyst. The Hall of Famer sold his minority ownership stake in the Lakers, but is still a club vice president and a close friend of the Buss family, which owns the team.

''The opinion expressed yesterday by Magic Johnson regarding Mike Brown was his personal opinion and was made in his role as a TV analyst,'' the team statement read. ''His words were not made on behalf of the Los Angeles Lakers, and in no way do they reflect the feelings or position of team ownership or management. We are fully committed to and supportive of Mike Brown as head coach of the Lakers.''

Johnson also said 7-footers Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol will be ''run ... out of town'' if the 16-time champion Lakers are eliminated by Denver.

A year ago, Brown replaced 11-time NBA champion coach Phil Jackson, who walked away from the franchise after the Lakers' second-round loss to Dallas last spring. Brown led the Lakers to their fifth straight Pacific Division title and a 41-25 record, but Los Angeles lost two straight closeout games this week against the Nuggets, leading to a winner-take-all Game 7.

Brown brushed off Johnson's comments during the Lakers' shootaround Saturday morning. Brown has two more guaranteed years on his contract with a fourth-year option, making an average of $4.5 million per season.

''Magic is a good guy, and he's entitled to his opinion,'' Brown said. ''Magic has a job to do, and one of his jobs is to voice his opinion. He's a great guy. There's nothing for me to be concerned about there. I'm coaching to win this game tonight, and that's it.''

Denver coach George Karl wasn't quite as kind shortly before Game 7, saying Magic's comments were ''totally out of control.''

''That statement is wild and crazy,'' Karl added. ''It's ESPN-ish. I think he got another year on his contract for that.''

Johnson and other Lakers legends often weigh in with dramatic pronouncements about the current teams. James Worthy frequently provides meaty sound bites in his role as a local television studio analyst — and last year, Johnson famously declared the Lakers should ''blow up'' the roster after their second-round loss to Dallas.

Johnson has been busy lately with his new job as a part-owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers, but he still found time to criticize Brown, a successful coach who has won just about everything but a championship.

Brown won 272 games over five seasons with LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers, who fired him in 2010 after losing in the second round. The Cavs reached the NBA finals in 2007, and Brown was the NBA's coach of the year in 2009 after Cleveland went 66-16.

Tagged: Lakers, Magic

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by


NBA Videos

NBA considering mid-season Vegas tournament? Posted: Jul 16, 2014
Adam Silver confirms the NBA has engaged in early conversations about the possib...

LeBron and Blatt 'will work together beautifully' Posted: Jul 14, 2014
Cavaliers head coach David Blatt on LeBron James' decision to return to Clevelan...

LeBron's back and so are the Cavs Posted: Jul 11, 2014
FOX Sports 1's Gary Payton weighs-in on LeBron's decision to return to Cleveland...

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Clippers/browse/featuredproduct/491845/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_491000/ff_491845_xl.jpg&w=100 59.95 adidas Blake Griffin Los Angeles Clippers Revolution 30 Performance Jersey - Red
    adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/498609/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_498000/ff_498609_xl.jpg&w=100 89.95 adidas LeBron James Miami Heat Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey-Black
    adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Knicks/browse/featuredproduct/620470/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_620000/ff_620470_xl.jpg&w=100 49.99 adidas Carmelo Anthony New York Knicks Revolution 30 Swingman Performance Jersey..
    Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_San_Antonio_Spurs/browse/featuredproduct/692239/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_692000/ff_692239_xl.jpg&w=100 25.95 Mitchell & Ness San Antonio Spurs Black Solid Script Snapback Adjustable Hat
    Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Los_Angeles_Lakers/browse/featuredproduct/851828/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851828_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Logo Man T-Shirt - Black
    Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/851842/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_851000/ff_851842_xl.jpg&w=100 23.95 Majestic Kevin Durant Oklahoma City Thunder Logo Man T-Shirt - White
    adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - White http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Miami_Heat/browse/featuredproduct/890174/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890174_xl.jpg&w=100 21.95 adidas Miami Heat 2012 NBA Eastern Conference Champions Locker Room T-Shirt - Wh..
    adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room Flex Hat - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Oklahoma_City_Thunder/browse/featuredproduct/890384/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_890000/ff_890384_xl.jpg&w=100 19.99 adidas Oklahoma City Thunder 2012 NBA Western Conference Champions Locker Room F..