In an apperance on Spectrum Sports Net, Lakers executive Jeanie Buss said she probably waited too long to fire her brother Jim and general manager Mitch Kupchak.
Buss hired Magic Johnson as the Lakers' president of basketball operations on Tuesday. As part of a front office reshuffling, both Jim Buss and Kupchak were relived of their duties. Jim Buss was in his 12th season as EVP of basketball operations while Kupchak was in his 17th as general manager.
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“This was a very difficult decision,” Buss said on Spectrum. “It was probably so hard for me to make that I probably waited too long. And for that, I apologize to Lakers fans. But now with clarity and direction, and talking to with Ervin, really knowing a change was needed, and that’s why we’re here today.”
In 2014, Jim Buss promised to resign if the Lakers were not in contention in “three or four” years.
The Lakers have missed the playoffs in three straight seasons, including last year when they finished with a franchise-worst 65 losses. This season, Los Angeles is 19-39, the third worst record in the NBA.
Johnson said he was already looking to hire a general manager to work under him. Multiple media reports say that agent Rob Pelinka has reached an agreement to become the Lakers' next general manager.
Pelinka represented Kobe Bryant and currently represents James Harden, but he must divest from his agent commitments before he becomes the general manager.