LOS ANGELES — It's been said that you expect more from the ones that you love — and there's no doubt that Magic Johnson loves the Los Angeles Lakers.
He played for them, coached them and was a team vice president and part owner until he sold his shares in order to partner up with the new Dodger ownership group.
And his expectations for the Lakers are equal — or even higher — than that of the most rabid Lakers fans.
Ever since the firing of Mike Brown and subsequent hiring of new coach Mike D'Antoni, Johnson has made no secret of the fact that he thinks the Buss family and Mitch Kupchak made a bad hire and should have brought back Phil Jackson to run the team.
Monday afternoon at Dodger Stadium following a news conference to introduce the newest Dodger, Korean pitcher Ryu Hyun-jin, Magic took his frustrations to an entirely new level. He blasted the team he says he loves and gave it very little chance to turn around a so-far disappointing season in 2012-13.
"We have got to get back to playing solid defense," he said at the beginning of his smiling tirade about all things Lakers. "That will make our offense go. Kobe (Bryant) is not going to ever have trouble scoring. (Pau) Gasol — if we put him in the right position — won't have trouble scoring. Dwight (Howard) can score. So, we can score. But we can't outscore everybody. You have to play defense first. Then you have to go down to the offensive end and score."