Magic Johnson denies role in Mike Brown firing

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

The Lakers legend, though critical of Brown, says he had no conversations with ownership about the coach's dismissal.

Longtime Los Angeles Lakers star and basketball Hall of Famer Magic Johnson has been openly critical of former head coach Mike Brown. But on Sunday, Johnson took to Twitter to deny any rumors that he played a role in the dismissal of Brown, who was fired on Friday.

Johnson, who sold his Lakers ownership shares in Oct. 2010, is now part of the ownership group of the Los Angeles Dodgers, sold in May for a record $2.15 billion.

"I'd like to address some rumors related to my role in the firing of Mike Brown. I had NO conversations w/ Dr. Buss, Jim Buss or Mitch," Johnson tweeted. "I'm not involved w/ the @Lakers day-to-day, only the @Dodgers."

Not that Johnson hasn't been critical of Brown, whom Johnson said wasn't the right guy for the job in the first place. Johnson expanded on his criticism of Brown in an interview with Sam Amick of USA Today:

We have to go back to history with Mike. Mike didn't get it done in Cleveland. If he can't get the championship done in Cleveland, having the game's best player (LeBron James), how are you going to come to Los Angeles and win it? It's just too bad. I think he will get another job, but it just wasn't the right fit for him here in Los Angeles

But even though Johnson was critical of Brown, the Hall of Famer said he had nothing to do with the coach's dismissal.

"The last time I spoke to Dr. Buss, was 3 months ago & we were merely reminiscing about the Showtime @Lakers days," Johnson tweeted. "If I was involved w/ the firing of Mike Brown, I would own it like I did w/ Paul Westhead."

Westhead was fired 11 games into the 1981-1982 season after a very public dispute with Johnson in the third season of Magic's playing career. The Lakers won a championship that season, and three more during the decade under new coach Pat Riley.

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