Johnson, who serves as the team’s president of basketball of operations, made the announcement at Staples Center just before the Lakers’ season finale against Portland, NBA.com reported.
During comments right after coach Luke Walton’s pregame remarks, Johnson said he had not yet told team owner Jeanie Buss he planned to step down.
The Atlantic’s Bill Oram was there when Johnson made his comments during what was described as an “impromptu press conference.”
“My concern is over my relationship with my sister, Jeanie Buss,” Oram quoted Johnson as saying.
“Somebody’s going to have to tell my boss because I knew I couldn’t be face-to-face and tell her,” he added in a tweet thread. “I couldn’t stand to tell her.”
Johnson is an NBA legend in his own right, having played point guard for the Lakers for 13 seasons.
After retiring and launching several business ventures, he re-joined the team in February 2017, when general manager Mitch Kupchak was fired and Jim Buss was ousted as executive vice president of basketball operations.
Johnson’s departure comes as the team wraps up a dismal season, with 37 wins and 44 losses heading into tonight’s game. The Lakers are 4th in the Pacific Division.
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