Earvin "Magic" Johnson

Active - 1988 - 2012  |   Born - Aug 14, 1959 in Lansing, Michigan, United States  |   Genres - Sports & Recreation [nf], Comedy

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Factsheet

  • Dubbed "Magic" by Lansing State Journal sportswriter Fred Stabley Jr. after Stabley witnessed Johnson post a triple-double (36 points; 16 assists; 16 rebounds) in a high-school game.
  • Led Michigan State University to the NCAA Tournament two straight years, culminating in the 1979 title over Larry Bird and Indiana State University—sparking a rivalry that spilled over into the two stars' NBA careers.
  • Selected first overall in the draft by the Los Angeles Lakers.
  • Started Game 6 of the 1980 NBA Finals in place of an injured Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and scored 42 points and 15 rebounds to clinch the title, and became the first rookie to win the Finals MVP.
  • Won five titles with the Lakers (1980, 1982, 1985, 1987 and 1988).
  • Announced on November 7, 1991, that he had contracted HIV and would retire immediately, but was subsequentally selected to the 1992 NBA All-Star Game, sparking complaints from some players.
  • Named to the 1992 U.S. Olympic Team, dubbed the Dream Team, after FIBA allowed professional players to compete.
  • Hosted a late-night talk show in 1998 called The Magic Hour, which was canceled by Fox after two months.
  • Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2002. He was introduced by former rival Larry Bird.