Lakers News: Magic Johnson Defends Jerry West Due To ‘Winning Time’ Portrayal
Magic Johnson, Lakers
Earvin “Magic” Johnson takes questions from journalists outside the Historic Capitol after a roundtable discussion about student athletes’ mental health Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2021.

The Los Angeles Lakers have historically always been able to draw headlines, regardless of how well their season is going.

In this case, the organization’s legends have come up in the news recently as they have voiced their displeasure with HBO’s TV drama “Winning Time.” The show explores the Showtime era of the 1980s headlined by key figures like Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Pat Riley.

While the show certainly does its part in retelling key moments in Laker history, it has also drawn criticism for how it has portrayed several members of that time.

For example, Jerry West’s character has often served as a comedic vehicle for viewers and that has upset the Logo, who recently requested an apology and retraction from HBO. Coming to his aid was Johnson, who tweeted out support for the former Lakers’ general manager via his Twitter account:

On “Winning Time,” West has been shown throwing tantrums or openly abrasive with others which several people around the franchise have called out for being completely false. West’s portrayal on the show has definitely felt counter to the West that most fans are familiar with and has moved the focus away from all the accolades the Hall of Famer has accomplished during his time with the Lakers.

Johnson knows about as well as anyone what West means to the Purple and Gold and that should not get lost as “Winning Time” continues to air.

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar calls out “Winning Time” for character portrayals

Abdul-Jabbar is another focal point of the Showtime era and he has also taken exception with how “Winning Time” has told the Lakers’ story so far. Abdul-Jabbar specifically called out the show’s characterizations of Johnson, West and Jerry Buss.

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