Magic’s Message To Kobe Bryant

ORLANDO — When the man many people consider the greatest Laker of them all reaches out to the man everyone else considers the greatest Laker of them all in an effort to mend fences and heal the franchise, you know things are serious.

Magic Johnson‘s message to Kobe Bryant is simple … go to the source!

And according to Magic, the issues Kobe has raised recently regarding Pau Gasol, trade rumors and any other drama begin and end with Lakers’ vice president of player personnel (and son of owner Dr. Jerry Buss)  Jim Buss and not Lakers’ general manager Mitch Kupchack.

“I think first of all we have to remember now it’s not Mitch’s situation anymore. He’s not running the team,” Johnson, a Lakers vice president said yesterday. “Jim Buss is running the team. So Mitch has to follow the direction of Jim Buss and what he wants. I wouldn’t say Mitch is the problem or anything. He’s going to do his job. But I think it’s great that you can see that Kobe is supporting his teammate. That’s a great thing.”

Folks who had a problem with Kobe blasting the front office earlier this week, and suggesting they either move Gasol or leave him alone so he can get back to playing comfortably and without the drama swirling around him, have to be furious with Magic for taking it a step further.

I had someone tell me “Kobe can’t do that to management. He can’t put his bosses on blast like that because it puts them in a tight spot trying to work the trade circuit behind the scenes.”

That’s craziness. Magic is only exposing what folks who follow the Lakers’ soap opera closest insist has been brewing since Mike Brown was hired to replace Phil Jackson without Bryant being consulted.

“I think what Kobe really probably wants is to just be informed. As a leader, as a future Hall of Famer, as a guy who has brought five championships to the Lakers and the fans of Los Angeles, he just wants to probably have more communication probably like he did when Phil Jackson was there, and he worked well with Mitch.

“I don’t think Kobe feels he’s probably got that type of relationship or the communication has been there with Jim. So I think what has to probably happen is, hey, sit Kobe down. Jim, sit him down, and say, hey, Dr. Buss was a master at taking you to lunch or taking you to dinner and really going over what he thought about or what he was thinking and what he wanted to do with the team, and Jerry West was great at that as well. So I think that Kobe, Mitch and Jim just got to get on the same page and things will be okay.”

Maybe all the Lakers needed was for Bryant to clear the air. Did you watch them last night against Dallas? Behind the inside work of Gasol and Andrew Bynum and the clutch shooting of Derek Fisher, they handled the reigning world champs on their home floor, the same team that blew the Lakers away on that same floor in that playoff sweep last season.

Maybe Bryant is right to tell the front office (Buss) to leave Gasol alone? Unlike many, he thinks this group is capable of contending for a title and said as much before the win over the Mavericks (per Mike Bresnahan of The Los Angeles Times):

Earlier in the day, Bryant was asked if Dallas dinged the Lakers’ mystique last season.

“It’s tough to put a dent in mystique with all of them [championship] banners,” Bryant said.

Can the Lakers get another one with their current roster?

“Yeah, we can,” Bryant said, “but we’ve got to be damn near perfect.”

The Lakers need to get their house in order to chase perfect. The greatest Lakers of all time both agree on that much!


  1. lakermig says:

    In my opinion the lakers have reached a stage where they are trying to rebuild from the ground up it seems but dont yet have any sort of plan for what theyre trying to build.If they are gonna try rebuild pretty much an entire team we have at least another 4 years without a title not to mention kobe will spend his final years carrying either a dying team or a young team that has potential but not championship wininning team. When it seems pretty simple and obvious to everyone to get a star caliber pg and some good bench players and we have a contending team right now (it wouldnt be easy, but we would).Then rebuild from scratch when kobe retires its seems like the logical thing

  2. nea_nelu says:

    When the franchise’s face makes it clear that he isn’t in the game for money but for more rings, u should consult him when trading. Right now the lakers dissambled a team that just got a bad machup last year and it looks to me they are trying to go rebuilding mode. When u trade odom for virtually nothing, get a bunch of useless players on roster and now try to trade Gasol without having a clear intention of getting a big piece right now, it clearly points out that u take this season out of discussion. Kobe doesn’t have time to lose one season and for him a season without a ring is a lost season.
    My best guess is that they are wainting for Deron at the end of season via freeagency and try to clear out space for his salary (Odom move). But still waiting another year for a star player means that u are wainting for OKC, Memphis, Clippers and Minessota (all having more balanced rosters then the lakers in my opinion) to get better, while ur best chance for a championship (Kobe) gets older. If the lakers don’t put themselfs in a position for a a division title this year, there would not be another chance in several years to come. (OKC is a championship team right now, memphis and clippers are very difficult matchups, and minessota has a chance to develop into a contender in the next 2-3 seasons )

  3. coach says:

    “Yes, we can.” – Kobe

  4. ZULU says:

    Kobe has a right to say whatever he wants regarding his job. You can’t accuse him of anything but trying to stay in the chase for the title of champion. Wlaton must own a large share of stock in the Lakers. Buss is a Bust, so far.

  5. walton says:

    Is walton the lakers mascot? If not letting him play…trade him!!! WTH mitch? He’s better than artest…or metta worst baller

  6. Artest says:

    Get beasly…t’wolves..he’s a beast. Yeah…keep pau, and send artest to the d-leauge!!!!

  7. Artest says:

    Should’ve kept lamar odom, and ariza. Lakers would’ve won last year!!!!! Mitch made a huge mistake bringing artest to the lakers. He’s shooting airballs and bricks, anyone can drive past him easily, he’s always late on the rotation….he’s the reason why the lakers had lost so many road games.

  8. MITCH says:

    KEEP PAU GASOL !!!!!!

    Would be hard to trade Artest, so just waive him or send him to the d-league or send him to china to promote his shoe. Without Artest Laker will do just fine with barnes and ebank and murphy….but even better to get additional help.

  9. kobe bryant says:

    hi guys, im sorry to disapoint you but i will not win anymore championships “tbh”, im old as bro.

  10. BogieMan says:

    Perhaps laers should look a t a trade involving Kwame Brown, Javaris Crittenton and Aaron McKie… that seemed to work out ok for them last time…

  11. ivan de vera says:

    i think the problem is the coach and coaching staff not the players, maybe the Lakers management will revise nor change the coach..

  12. GSD says:

    The lakers shouldnt trade pau. Just give up a first round pick to get a pg like devin harris or raon sessions and you dont have to give up your big man, its that simple!!

  13. ak says:

    they should go for dwight

  14. fan of lakers says:

    if they get arenas…. and one small forward…… then Lakers will dominate the west and get the championship trophy…..

  15. Carl says:

    All we need is a few consistent bench players and a point guard and we’re really set.

    • lakermig says:

      yeah thats a fact,but who are these players gonna be and will this douchebag of a jim buss get it done cause as much as i love the lakers the current team is not gonna get it done and youd have to be living on another planet to think that even with kobe,pau,bynum on top form and ron artest not being hopeless we still cant beat OKC or MIAMI

  16. team lakers says:

    go lakers you can’t win this game make sure that you are the champion of all the nba teams just give all you strength kobe

  17. Jose says:

    Magic was moaning a lot during (and afterwards) the past play-off matches. He said, as far as I remember, that Lakers needed some important changes, in terms of players.
    Could he give some solutions to the problems as well?
    Be it known I agree Magic has been one of the very greatests.

  18. Nada says:

    Get Linsanity

  19. ChrisBrown says:

    @charles magic fan in da house! oh yeah last time I checked this article is supposed to be about Kobe supporting his teammate not who’s the greatest laker of all time. Let me guess you’re still from the magic era and you’re left behind to know the current NBA, watch Kobe first and what he accomplished.

  20. charles says:

    Magic is the greatest laker ever and in the argument for the greatest player ever. The guy was absurdly talented and there has never been a player like him – he is incomparable. He could score, rebound and had a sense of the game that was completely intuitive and fluid. If he was at his top form playing with the lakers right now, Bynum, Gasol and Artest’s averages would go up by 50%.

  21. Kratos rage says:

    Trading Pau is a big no-no. He’s much talented than bynum obviously has wide range of offensive moves. He’s still on his peak so dont trade Pau. trade artest instead. lakers hasn’t “metta world peace” in his game so trade him for a decent 3-guy. they have a decent PG in Steve Blake and Fisher. They should give Troy Murphy and Kapono more playing time because they can shoot from beyond.

  22. kobethebest says:

    I think Kobe found the right words in the right moment; sincerly, I don’t think trading Pau could be a good choice for the Lakers, he had a big impact in the last 2 titles, I think they have to wait the end of the season and then…D Williams free agent, Pau as center, trading Bynum for a power and small forwars able to shoot weel from the arc….in this way we can have a better spacing, many ways to find buckets (penetrations, long range shooting, down low post points)…let me know what do you think about a starting line-up built in this way.
    GO L.A.!!!!!!!!!

    • #1 Lakers fan says:

      Well i like your line up and agree d will would be a great addition to the team over Howard and i think we c an wait till the summer when he becomes a free agent. But i feel that we have a great team already just that the bench is horrible theres no one like Lamar Odom to score of the bench consistently. I think we need better bench players who can knock down shots i think the Lakers need to dump the whole bench exept Goudelock, barnes and blake.

  23. Pau & Drew says:

    Lakers just need a point guard like Deron Williams or even Devin Harris and a better small forward.
    Ron Artest has been playing horrible. Get James Jones from the miami heat or Paul Pierce.

    Also Ebanks needs more playing time and Matt Barnes has been playing great.

    • Kobe Bryant says:

      they should go for melo

      • sbfern805 says:

        You guys are retarded…Melo? for who? Paul Pierce? he resigned with the Celtics at their worst time what makes you think he will sign with the Lakers? To get Deron Williams, Lakers have to give something up and BIG…If we had L.O. is would say use him or gasol for the trade, but now losing Gasol is too much and it takes most of the Lakers advantage of being a tall team… I still think Arenas or a decent guard would make the job good for the lakers…

  24. A Columbus says:

    Loved the fact Kobe supported his teammate publicly!!

  25. cha says:

    Yes, it wasn’t right for Kobe to call them out like that cause things like these should really be handled privately and inside their vacinity, the media (liars) don’t need to get their hands on this type of info cause you know that one thing will lead to another. But at the same,I can’t help but give Kobe credit by clearing the air and letting Pau and the other 13 men in the Roster know that it’s their team and the only thing that matters is if you do it for each other. Pau did a marvelous job last night with the Mavs’ D focused on Kobe.

  26. prix says:

    Kobe did a great job for supporting Pau..Pau is the main reason for Lakers success and the rings..without him the Lakers always makes an early exit.. it better to say that Kobe´s arrogance makes a positive impact to a dying team and that´s makes the management think twice…nice move Kobe, way more better than your recent fade aways that fall short.. the most arrogant player turn out be good…to good to be true…