Before making the move to acquire Nash, Lakers legend Magic Johnson publicly criticized VP Jim Buss for not being more aggressive to improve the team. Along with commenting on the lack of aggressiveness by the storied NBA franchise, Magic also claimed that Buss had to make a move before next season in order to contend in a vastly improved Western Conference.
Now that Nash is in the mix and the Lakers have also added veteran forward Antawn Jamison, Magic says Buss has done a good job, but he’d do a great job by bringing in Dwight Howard according to Mark Medina of the L.A. Times:
“Jim Buss has done a good job,” Johnson said in an interview with The Times moments before a recent brunch at the Skirball Cultural Center for his self-named foundation. “He hasn’t done a great job yet, but he’s done a good job. If they get Dwight Howard, then he’s done a great job.”
There’s no question that the Lakers are a much improved team with the addition of Nash, Jamison and the re-signing of Jordan Hill, but Magic has a point with his statement about Howard.
The move to acquire Nash was an important one with the team bringing in a short-term fix for their problems at the point guard position. However, the addition of Nash doesn’t secure the future of the team after the projected retirement of Kobe Bryant in two years.
Landing Howard in a blockbuster trade with the Orlando Magic would almost certainly help secure the future of the storied NBA franchise. With the acquisition of Howard and potential long-term deal signed by the superstar center after next season, the future will be bright in Los Angeles even in the post Kobe Bryant era. The Lakers will have a building block in Howard that will almost certainly draw other stars to Los Angeles.
GM Mitch Kupchak and Buss have done more than anticipated thus far, but Magic may have a point in terms of the difference between doing a good job and great one with the addition Howard.