(DALLAS) — Former Los Angeles Lakers star Magic Johnson said on Tuesday that Kobe Bryant and the Lakers need to sit down with management and address some issues.
Both Bryant and Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak have been firing blows at each other through the media the last couple days about the handling of teammate Pau Gasol’s future with Los Angeles, and Johnson says this needs to end.
“We have to remember now, it’s not Mitch’s situation anymore,” said the five-time NBA champion.
“[Kupchak is] not running the team,” Johnson said. “Jim Buss is running the team. So, Mitch has to follow the direction of Jim Buss and what he wants. I wouldn’t say Mitch is the problem or anything. He’s going to do his job.”
When Bryant was informed about Johnson saying that the two should sit down and talk, Bryant said, “Perhaps.” Bryant added, “Nobody else is going to say it. I’m the only one with cojones big enough to say it, so I said it.”
For now, the drama continues into All-Star weekend in Orlando with Pau Gasol still wearing the purple and gold.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN Newswire
Jill Martin, CNN