The Resignation of Mike D’Antoni Pleases Magic Johnson

Published on 2-May-2014 by Raoul Duke

Basketball - NBA    NBA Daily Review

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The Resignation of Mike D’Antoni Pleases Magic Johnson

Former Los Angeles Laker Hall of Famer and part owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers Magic Johnson clearly doesn’t appreciate the work of Mike D’Antoni.

After news of D’Antoni’s resignation as head coach of the Lakers had been announced, Magic could not contain his joy for very long, deciding to share his glee through social media.

In fact, Magic apparently took to Twitter a mere 33 minutes after the Lakers had confirmed the report and did so with a childlike exuberance that would have been heartwarming if not for the complete vindictiveness of the message:

As you can see, these exuberant thoughts are courtesy of the official Twitter account of one Earvin 'Magic' Johnson, and the liberal use of exclamation points clearly indicates the presence of joy.

Johnson has been critical of D’Antoni from the very beginning of his woefully brief stint as Lakers head coach. Magic was pining for the return of Phil Jackson back in November of 2012, and when the Lakers decided to hire D’Antoni instead, Johnson was apparently so befuddled he fell silent, and then emerged two days later with a pair of tweets regarding his thoughts on the subject.

While he clearly wanted Jackson back, Magic was obviously not particularly enamored with D’Antoni, who had just relinquished the New York Knicks gig after three-and-a-half miserable seasons. Magic has been hammering away at D’Antoni ever since, particularly regarding his lack of defensive acumen.

While Johnson obviously has an emotional investment in his former team, the timing of some of his remarks has been dubious at best. Of course, as a television analyst, Magic has every right to critique the merits of a head coach, even if he is somewhat biased. However, his consistent public ridiculing of D’Antoni in other venues seemed to cross the line.

The most egregious example of this was when Magic decided to launch into a lengthy diatribe about D’Antoni at a Dodgers press conference. Never mind that the gathering was to announce the signing of pitcher Zach Greinke. Magic felt a more practical use of this time would be to torch the system and philosophy of D’Antoni before the coach was barely into his Lakers tenure.

Well, it would appear Magic has been granted his very public wish, as D’Antoni has fled Staples Center. As Johnson indicated over and over again, it does seem that D’Antoni never really was a good fit in Los Angeles, and this past season was an injury-ravaged nightmare with the Lakers finishing 27-55.

If Magic would cease the cyber-cartwheels for a moment, perhaps he could enlighten us as to the identity of the next Lakers coach.