Johnson, who played a key role in bringing LeBron James to the team previous year, broke the news before the 104-101 defeat by the Portland Trail Blazers. We are deeply grateful to Magic for all that he has done for our franchise - as a player, an ambassador and an executive.
"We [the Lakers] are halfway there with LeBron coming".
Johnson, a longtime broadcaster and respected basketball figure before moving into the front office, has been investigated four times for tampering after everything from a joking comment about Paul George on Jimmy Kimmel's talk show to his response to an email sent to him by Philadelphia's Ben Simmons. "Trust me. ... It's going to be hard for her to come and hear this right now".
The Lakers' season, meanwhile, ended on Tuesday night, as Los Angeles fell to Portland on a buzzer-beater. I'm so happy. I'm a guy who always knows when things are right, and this is right. I had more fun on the other side than on this side. He previously had an ownership stake in the Lakers, but sold his interest in 2010.
Johnson, 59, replaced Jim Buss as president of basketball operations on February 21, 2017. "I don't wanna.[team owner Jeanie Buss] and I have such [an] fantastic relationship".
The Lakers. meanwhile, paid tribute to Johnson in a brief statement. Johnson says his current health is ideal, and he insists no health concerns were part of his decision to quit the job that seemed to be his ultimate destiny.
With the way the Lakers' first season with LeBron James hobbled toward the finish line like a wounded gazelle, you nearly had to laugh as Johnson took center stage from Dwyane Wade and Dirk Nowitzki - both playing in the final home games of their career on Tuesday night - to abruptly resign from his post, unbeknownst to owner Jeanie Buss and general manager Rob Pelinka, then spout off bewildering one-liners like, "I'm a free bird and I've been handcuffed", and, "if we were not [moving in the right direction as a franchise], I'd probably be staying".
Johnson had been saddled with the task of reviving the Lakers and played a pivotal role in persuading LeBron James to join the team a year ago in a blockbuster move. "See what she wants to do", the Lakers great added.
Johnson, who won five titles as a player with the team, was appointed president in March 2017.
It's been widely reported that the Lakers were expected to dismiss Walton at the end of the regular season.
He told reporters he was stepping down in order to preserve his friendship with Lakers owner Jeanie Buss, describing her as "like a sister".