Earvin "Magic" Johnson

Topics: Magic Johnson, Los Angeles Lakers, Boston Celtics Pages: 5 (1899 words) Published: April 26, 2013
Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr.
Earvin Johnson Jr. was born on August 14, 1959, in Lansing, Michigan, Magic Johnson dominated the court as one of America's best basketball players for 12 years. If there was one aspect of Johnson's game that awed people the most, it was his brilliant passing skills. He dazzled fans and dumbfounded opponents with no-look passes off the fast-break, pinpoint alley-oops from half-court, spinning feeds and overhand bullets under the basket through triple teams. When defenders expected him to pass, he shot. When they expected him to shoot, he passed. Johnson did all of this while maintaining a childlike enthusiasm born of a pure love of sport and competition. Beyond all the money, success and fame, Johnson was just happy to be playing basketball. He retired from the LA Lakers in 1991 after revealing that he had the AIDS virus. He has since then built up a business empire called Magic Johnson Enterprises, which includes real estate holdings, several Starbucks franchises, and movie theaters. Magic Johnson is also a proud part-owner of the Las Angles Dodgers. He signed his contract with the Dodgers before the 2012 season has started and he seems very excited to help this organization. He is also an author, one of his books, or most popular book, is called “32 Ways to Be a Champion in Business.”

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Basketball icon Magic Johnson was born Earvin Johnson Jr. on August 14, 1959, in Lansing, Michigan. For 12 years, Johnson dominated the court as one of America's best basketball players. He has since then built up a business empire, which includes real estate holdings, several Starbucks franchises, and movie theaters. From a large family, Johnson grew up with nine brothers and sisters. Both of his parents worked—his father for the General Motors plant in town and his mother for as a school custodian. He had a passion for basketball, and would start practicing as early as 7:30 a.m. At Everett High School, Johnson earned his famous nickname, "Magic," after a sportswriter witnessed him score 36 points, 16 rebounds, and 16 assists in a single game.

Magic Johnson continued to play in college for Michigan State University. Standing at 6 feet 9 inches tall, he made for an impressive point guard. Johnson excelled during his freshman year, helping his team, the Spartans, clinch the Big Ten Conference title. The following year, he played an important role in taking the Spartans all the way to the NCAA Finals. There they faced off against the Indiana State Sycamores. In one of the most famous match-ups in college basketball history, Johnson went head-to-head with Indiana's star forward, Larry Bird. The Spartans proved victorious, and the Johnson-Bird rivalry would follow the players to their days with the NBA. Leaving college after two years, Johnson was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers in 1979. Having accomplished all he wanted to on the college level, Johnson passed up his final two seasons and entered the 1979 NBA Draft. The Utah Jazz were supposed to draft in the first position, but the Jazz had conveyed their 1979 first-round pick to the Los Angeles Lakers three years earlier as compensation for the free-agent signing of

Gail Goodrich. Thus the Lakers took Johnson with the first overall pick. He did well in his first season (1979-80) with the team, averaging 18 points, 7.7 rebounds, and 7.3 assists per game. Johnson won the NBA Finals Most Valuable Player award for his efforts in leading the Lakers to a victory over the Philadelphia 76ers, winning four of six games in the championship series. The team also included such strong players as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Jamaal Wilkes and Norm Nixon.

During Magic Johnson's third season (1981-82) with the team, the Lakers made the NBA Finals again. For the second time in his pro career, the Lakers defeated the Philadelphia 76ers for the championship title. Additionally, Johnson, who scored 13 points, and made 13 rebounds and 13 assists...
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