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Black History Month
Ervin Magic Johnson
Ervin "Magic" Johnson
On August 14,1959, in Lansing, Michigan a boy named Ervin Johnson Jr. was born. He grew up along with nine brothers and sisters, his father worked in a General Motors plant, and his mom was a school custodian. Ervin Johnson passed the time by singing on street corners with his buddies ,and also playing basketball many mornings at 7:30. His neighbors called him "Junior", or " June Bug".
Johnson was first called "Magic" when he was the star at Everett High School, and was given the nickname by a sports writer who saw the 15 year old Johnson play a unbelievable game, with 36 points, 16 rebounds, and 16 assists. While he was a senior, he led Everett to a 27-1 record and the state title while averaging 28.8 points and 16.8 rebounds.
Johnson didn't want to go that far away from home for college so he attended
Michigan State University
in East Lansing. While as a freshman he put up impressive numbers ( 17ppg, 7.9 rpg, 7.4 apg) leading the Michigan State Spartans to a 25-5 record and the Big Ten Conference title. He was an All-American sophomore and directed his team to the national title in 1979, beating Larry Bird's Indiana State squad in perhaps the most anticipated NCAA Championship Game ever played.
Ervin accomplished all he wanted to on the college level, so he passed up his final two seasons and entered the 1979 NBA Draft. The Utah Jazz had the first-round pick and was supposed to draft him ,but a trade done that sent free agent Gail Goodrich to the Utah Jazz and the First-round pick to the
Los Angeles Lakers
. The Lakers picked Ervin "Magic" Johnson with the first pick of the draft.
Picking up Johnson wasn't the first and only move the Los Angeles Lakers made that off season. They hired a new coach ( Jack McKinney ), new owner ( Jerry Buss ), and seven new faces on the court. Alot of eye's were on Johnson his first game of the season, because he was the most exciting college player in a Laker uniform. He was on the team with another Hall of Fame player
. Johnson won the NBA Championship his rookie season with a 60-22 record, the league's second best. In 77 games his numbers started to look like they were at Michigan State (18 ppg, 7.7 rpg, 7.3 apg). He also became one of the first rookie's to start in the NBA All-Star Game since Elvin Hayes. The next year, the Lakers were in game six against the Philadelphia 76ers, Johnson done a legendary performance in the series clinching sixth game.
was sidelined with a badly sprained ankle during his 40 point performance in game 5. Johnson wrapped up the series in game six with 42 points,15 rebounds, seven assists, and three steals.
When the 1991-92 campaign came around, Johnson shocked the world with the announcement that he had tested positive for HIV and his was retiring from the NBA. He made an appearance at the All-Star game and won the game's MVP award and also lead the west to a 153-113 victory. After that game he started a campaign to promote AIDS awareness, and for doing that won the league's J. Walter Kennedy Citizenship Award. He played for the 1992 Dream Team and wrote a book on safe sex, ran several business he had started earlier in his career,and replaced Randy Pfund as Head Coach of the Lakers.
Johnson resigned as the coach in 1994 ,but wasn't done with the NBA after sitting out 4 1/2 seasons. He made his big comeback late in the 1995-96 campaign, playing the final 32 games of the season. Sitting out had bulked him up to 255 pounds and played at power forward just as good as he played at point guard. Houston knocked the Lakers out in the first round of the playoffs and Johnson retired once again.
Ervin "magic" Johnson
was the tallest and one of the greatest point gaurds to play the game. He won alot of awards during his NBA Career such as: NBA Championship (1980, '82,'85, '87, '88); Finals-MVP (1980, '89 , '87); three time NBA-MVP( 1987, '89 , '90); nine-time All-NBA First team (1983-'91); All-NBA Second team (1992); 12-time All Star; All-Star MVP (1990, '92); Olympic gold medalist (1992); One of 50 Greatest players in NBA History (1996); and Elected to Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall a fame (2002). He was in the Hall of Fame with players from his team such as
and James Worthy.
Magic Johnson's Top ten playoff plays
If you didn't want to read what I wrote on the top of the page this video (below) would explain everything.
A Tribute to Ervin "magic" Johnson
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