The Los Angeles Lakers were left in a tailspin when president of basketball operations Magic Johnson announced he would be stepping down from the position, leaving owner Jeanie Buss, general manager Rob Pelinka, and head coach Luke Walton completely out of the loop on the decision.
For now, it seems that Pelinka and Walton will remain in their current positions, with the former potentially seeing an uptick in power.
However, in the NBA, things can change in an instant.
In fact, there’s one anonymous agent who believes it’s imperative the Lakers fire Pelinka as he has proven himself to be an untrustworthy figure, according to Broderick Turner of Los Angeles Times:
“I just don’t see how they do anything going forward with Rob in place,” one agent said. “No one trusts him.”
Pelinka was brought in by Buss, but in Johnson’s final press conference, he had no prior relationship with the general manager. In fact, he was almost too confidential when asked about his opinions on Pelinka and whether or not he should stay with the Lakers — almost immediately throwing the responsibility to Buss.
Perhaps Johnson didn’t want to create any more drama than he already had by throwing Pelinka further under the bus. However, Johnson has always been known as an open, public figure, so it seems strange that he would choose now to remain private on an issue.
If Pelinka really is untrustworthy, it won’t be long before he’s gone and Buss finds a new front office duo. If Pelinka stays, it likely becomes more difficult to bring in a new president of basketball operations. How Buss plays the next few weeks and the entire offseason could make or break the entire Lakers organization.