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Los Angeles Lakers

LeBron James says he was caught off guard by Magic Johnson's shock resignation from the Lakers: 'It was just weird'

#LeBron #Magic
(NBA Getty Images)

Magic Johnson's shock resignation from the Los Angeles Lakers caught everyone by surprise, including Lakers star LeBron James.

Johnson stepped down as President of Basketball Operations last month with little warning, leaving James in disbelief as he explained on the latest episode of his HBO show: The Shop.

"Between my stretching sessions, my right hand comes up to me and say, 'Magic just stepped down." James recalled telling business partner Randy Mims. "And I'm like, 'Man, get the f--- out of my face, you're bulls----ng me.' I check my phone, I look at it, the s--t happened," James said, as transcribed by The Washington Post.

"Personally, for me, I came here to be a part of the Lakers organisation after having a conversation with Magic, so it was just weird for him to just be like 'Nah, I'm out of here,' and not even have, like: 'Hey, Bron...kiss my a--. I'm out of here.' It wasn't even that."

Johnson, who played a role in recruiting James in free agency held an impromptu press conference prior to the Lakers' final regular season game against the Portland Trail Blazers, telling reporters that he had yet to inform team owner Jeanie Buss of his decision.

"We were like, 'Damn, right now?' It was literally 70 minutes on the clock before [tip-off]," James said.

"[The team] is getting ready for a game. And you decide to do that right here, right now? I feel like there's a time and place for things, and I believe that you knew you were going to make that decision. So why would you do it here? And why would you do it now?"

Just a few days later, head coach Luke Walton and the Lakers 'mutually agreed' to part ways, adding to what is already a big summer for the franchise who missed the playoffs for the first time in six seasons.

With the Lakers currently interviewing candidates for their head coaching position, General Manager Rob Pelinka has taken on a larger responsibility in the front office, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

While James acknowledged at the beginning of his first season in Hollywood that there would be some growing pains alongside a young core, injuries across the roster as well as the drama surrounding a trade for New Orleans Pelicans star Anthony Davis trade added to an already tense environment.

"We all knew that it was going to be kind of tough," James said. "But I was okay with the process. At year 16, you aren't really supposed to be worried about no d--- process. Especially for me, because I'm in championship mode all the time."

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