Before Jim Buss was relieved of his position as vice president of basketball operations, the 57-year-old was reportedly trying to save his job by making some moves. Unfortunately for him, these moves jeopardized the future of the franchise with the team having to part ways with parts of the young core.
According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, Paul Millsap was a player Jim may have been targeting in exchange for some of the Lakers talented young players:
“At the same time, Jim was making moves that Jesse interpreted as mortgaging the Lakers’ future to save his job. In early January, he heard the Lakers had been discussing trades for veteran players — like Atlanta’s Paul Millsap — that involved giving up several of the team’s young players.”
Jeanie chose to step in after being told of Jim’s intentions by another sibling, Jesse. The Lakers president prevented any move involving the young core by making sure she’d sign off on any deal being made, via Shelburne:
“I emailed Joey and Jeanie: ‘This is the time where you need to step in!'” Jesse says. “The next day, she sent an email to everyone saying, ‘If any trades being discussed include our young players, please notify me so I can sign off.'”
Inevitably, Magic Johnson was brought in to replace Jim and Pelinka was hired to be Mitch Kupchak’s successor as general manager. The new regime is now in place with a potentially bright future ahead with Jeanie being the undisputed leader for the storied franchise.
Although Jeanie prevented Jim from making trade or trades including the team’s promising young players, it’ll be interesting to see if her stance changes this summer if Paul George or Jimmy Butler are there for the taking on the trade market.
In the meantime, Buss has the team moving the direction she wants with Johnson and Pelinka leading the way for the front office.