“A million dollars from Magic to LeBron” 

Magic Johnson is a fan of basketball highlights, which probably explains why he played the way he played back in his time with the LA Lakers. Back in 2013, Johnson longed for an All-Star to participate in the dunk contest and even offered money to LeBron James.

During the 2012-13 season, Johnson was with Jalen Rose and Bill Simmons as they prepared to cover the Miami Heat’s matchup against the Memphis Grizzlies. It was during pre-game warm-ups and the three were grading LeBron’s pre-game dunks. At the time, the Heat were known to have jaw-dropping warm-ups because of James’ dunks.

After a short while, Johnson made a public offer for the 6-foot-9 forward to participate in the dunk contest. Here’s what he had to say:

“LeBron, please. Get in the dunk contest one time.

“I’mma pull up a million dollars into the dunk contest. A million dollars from Magic to LeBron. Please get in the dunk contest. I go every year, I wanna see you out there. A million to the winner.”


Rose added that Blake Griffin should also take part in the dunk contest if James decides to join. It would be the first battle between the two All-Stars in the dunk contest in a long time.

Despite the generous offer from the NBA legend, LeBron didn’t join the contest. Fans have longed for the superstar forward to take part in the dunk contest since entering the league back in 2003. James is currently in the twilight years of his career and hoping for him to participate in the dunk contest won’t mean much.

You might also be interested in reading this: “Never fear, Magic is here”- How Magic Johnson rallied his teammates in 1980 NBA Finals after Kareem got hurt

Magic Johnson helped the LA Lakers to sign LeBron James

Magic Johnson as an executive for the LA Lakers
Magic Johnson as an executive for the LA Lakers

In the summer of 2018, the LA Lakers were seeking a new franchise star as they’ve grown tired of being at the bottom of the Western Conference standings. With that, they turned to Magic Johnson, who was the team executive at the time to bring in some superstars in the squad.

Due to his influence and starpower, he was able to land LeBron to sign a multi-year deal with the Lakers. Magic shared the story of how he was able to acquire James when he was a guest on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.”

“I’m sitting out there, and I’m waiting for 9 o’clock. At 9 o’clock, I inch to the gate, but I don’t ring the buzzer til 9:01… We just started talking about how we both grew up first. How we had probably the same expectations of people expected us to win and be good. We both mid-West boys, he’s from Ohio, I’m from Michigan.

“He broke down every player on our team, their strengths and weaknesses, he already knew the guys on our team. I was very impressed with that. The fact that he knew he could fit in to this young core that we have.”


Magic’s efforts paid off when the Lakers won the title with LeBron in 2020.

Also read: Does Magic Johnson own the LA Dodgers? Lakers legend’s role within organization explored

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