The True Story Behind HBO’s Winning MassNews

Basketball, drugs and sex. HBO’s new docudrama It’s Winning Time: How the Lakers Dynasty Rises, premiering March 6, Is based on Jeff Pearlman’s 2014 best-seller Showtime: Magic and Kareem Riley as well as the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty from the 1980s. As the book, this 10-part limited series was also produced by Adam McKayThe book, ‘The Hedonistic Sports Team That Defined the Age of Excessiveness?’ offers an unfiltered look at this hedonistic team.

Stars of the Show John C. ReillyAs the late Los Angeles Jerry Buss, owner of the Lakers, a flamboyant self-made millionaire who was a chemist and real-estate mogul before becoming the architect of the “Showtime” Lakers, as the team was commonly called. Buss was eager to capitalize off the team’s proximity to Hollywood, turning the courtside experience into “Disneyland meets the Playboy Club at the Oscars,” as The Winning TimeSimply put it. He was surrounded by stars on the court, too, including Earvin “Magic” Johnson and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.
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The Winning Time offers an unvarnished and sometimes unflattering look at the players, coaches, and personnel that helped the Lakers win five championships in the ‘80s. Perhaps that’s why none of them participated in the making of the series. (“I’m not looking forward to it. I’m going to leave it at that,” Johnson told TMZIn December 2021. Ultimately, The Winning Time Jerry Buss is my love letter One of the most innovative people in history that any sport has ever seen—as well as one of the most eccentric.

You can read the rest of this article to see what is right and wrong with the Lakers.

Jerry West didn’t want to draft Magic Johnson simply because of Jerry West’s smile.

The Winning Time Lakers head coach Jerry West (Jason Clarke) is convinced that the team shouldn’t draft Magic with its No. The Lakers should not draft Magic with their No. 1 pick but instead choose to go with Sidney MoncriefWest considered West to have been a better scorer than. He also thought Magic was too happy-go-lucky for the NBA, telling Buss, “He smiles too much.”

It’s true that West, who was head coach from 1976-79, disagreed with the team’s decision to draft Johnson. But it’s unclear whether Johnson’s megawatt smile had anything to do with it.

West believed that Johnson, who’s 6 ft. 9 in, was too tall to be a successful NBA point guard, and he wasn’t convinced he could shoot. That’s why West wanted to pick a sharpshooter like Moncrief, who was drafted fifth overall by the Milwaukee Bucks. However, Johnson’s height ended up being one of his strengths as a player. His smile is a popular one.

Is Jerry Buss the inventor of courtside seating technology?

The The Winning Time premiere begins with Jerry comparing basketball to “great sex” as he lounges around the Playboy Mansion. As he leaves Hugh Hefner’s love palace, he looks into the camera and says he’s going to buy the struggling Los Angeles Lakers franchise and make the team the hottest ticket in town. Buss (real life) is Buss. Playboy Mansion staple and a close friend of Hefner’s, had a reputation for being a playboy himself. (Deadspin’s obituary for Buss was titled “Jerry Buss, Surrounded By Boobs: A Tribute to the NBA’s Greatest Owner Ever.”) But he was also a skilled businessman who quickly realized he could sell the glamor of Hollywood to basketball fans. Forum Club was an exclusive celebrity club located in the Forum Arena. It also houses the Laker Girls dance troupe. kickstart Paula Abdul’s career.

Buss recognized that courtside seating existed and was not new to the market. He started charging extra for the “beachfront property,” his daughter Jeanie Buss, the current president of the Lakers, told The New York Times In 2021, it attracted celebrities such as Jack Nicholson. (The courtside area later became known as “The Nicholson chairs.”)

Getting courtside tickets to the Lakers, which reportedly now sell for up to $5,000, is all about who you know—but Buss couldn’t secure a permanent positionin the showroom during his 34 year tenure as owner. After the Lakers relocated from Forum to Staples Center (which it is today), Arena) in 1999, he tried to lock in four courtside seats but couldn’t convince any longtime ticket holders to sell to him. That didn’t surprise John Black, the Lakers’ vice president of public relations, who told The Sports Network in 2014: “I mean, people leave those seats in their wills.”

Magic Johnson must have brought Kareem Abde-Jabbar an orange juice glass every morning.

Episode 2: MagicQuincy IsaiahKareem (Solomon Hughes, the team’s captain, a glass of orange juice and the newspaper every morning during training camp in Palm Springs. In his book, Pearlman wrote that each year Lakers veterans “adopted” a rookie during training camp. Abdul-Jabbar chose Johnson and gave him the task of bringing Johnson a glass freshly squeezed orange juice. morning’s edition of the New York Times.

While it doesn’t seem like Johnson had any trouble fulfilling his duties, The Winning Time accurately depicts the way the players frequently fought heads. “It took about five minutes for Kareem and Magic to form a strong relationship on the court,” the Los Angeles Times The 1987 letter was written by the author. “It took about five years for them to establish a relationship off the court.”

Johnson acknowledged that he had been Times that “it was hard to get through to Kareem” during their first years as teammates. Abdul-Jabbar agreed that both men failed to put in the effort to become friends, but “there was never any conflict or anything like that. It just took a while before we got to know each other.” Some argue that each player was jockeying for control of the team, leading to conflict. In 1981, while Abdul-Jabbar was out with a foot injury, Johnson told reporters, “When he leaves, you’ll be able to see the Realität Magic show.” (In response, Abdul-Jabbar told the media, “I’m not dead yet. The reports of my demise have been greatly overrated.”)

Abdul-Jabbar eventually became close to Johnson, during which Abdul-Jabbar was pictured with Johnson at the 1991 press conference. Johnson revealed that he had decided to retire from basketball. HIV positive?.

Despite Abdul-Jabbar Johnson was not his favourite teammate of all-time—that honor went to James Worthy—the two have stayed close. Johnson tweets that Abdul-Jabbar was in 2020 the greatest college player of all-time. “I would have to agree as my college years were incredible,” Abdul-Jabbar responded. “But playing for The Lakers and having you as my teammate was a G.O.A.T friendship.”

Was Spencer Haywood really able to circumcise?

In episode 5, Spencer Haywood (played by Wood Harris) joins the Lakers and immediately causes a stir over a rumor that he circumcised himself as a kid with a “rock and a razor.” After a few of his teammates try to get a closer look at his much-discussed member, Spencer confirms the chatter. “I grabbed it, I held it down like a copperhead snake, I did the deed,” he proudly explains to his new teammates.

Although it sounds like an urban legend Haywood explained in 1992 his autobiography. Spencer Haywood: Rise, Fall, Recovery,He was a teenage boy in Mississippi, in the 1950s. His brother had convinced him to remove his foreskin to get rid of insanity.

Is it possible that a bicycle crash and a mob hit led Pat Riley to become the Lakers coach

Pat Riley as played by Adrien BrodyThe other is These are the best basketball coaches.However The Winning Time He demonstrates that a handful of unlucky break for others eventually earned him his first position as a head coach.

This HBO series focuses mainly on the facts. Buss hired University of Las Vegas coach after West retired as coach in 1979. Jerry Tarkanian, better known as “Tark the Shark.” But Tarkanian turned down the position after His agent and close friend Victor WeissHe was killed. Police believed that he was an a A victim of an organized mob assaultHe was never arrested.

They then chose their next option. Jack McKinneyMcKinney, an internationally acclaimed assistant coach with the Portland Trail Blazers was to assume the season 1979-1980. Unfortunately, McKinney’s time with the Lakers was cut short after he was in a horrific bicycle accident in 1979 that left him in a coma for three days. He was assisted by his assistant. Paul WestheadFor the rest of the season, Riley, an ex-high school English teacher, who frequently quoted Shakespeare, was the coach. Riley was appointed as Westhead’s assistant coach. In 1980, they led the Lakers to their first championship. But, in the year that followed, Riley was fired. Westhead was firedRiley was the chosen one to assume control of the team.

Under Riley’s leadership, the Lakers went on to win championships in 1982, 1985, 1987, and 1988. Riley shared his story in 2020 that Jerry Buss’ confidence in him as a new coach “saved my basketball life, or redirected it in a way that I never realized that I was going to be where I am today.”

Is it possible that Magic Johnson turned down the chance to be Nike’s face?

In episode 6, Nike co-founder Phil Knight pitches Magic on a deal to sign with his new sneaker brand: “We need more than a smile on the poster, we need a partner.” Since Nike can’t offer Magic $80,000 a year, like other companies could, Knight says he’ll give Magic stock options instead. Magic rejects the chance and joins Converse.

Nike did indeed offer to pay Johnson in stock if he signed with the company—and that decision continues to haunt him. “I didn’t know anything about stock. I’m from the inner city,” Johnson said on Ellen DeGeneres ShowIn 2019. “We don’t know about stocks, [but]Oh my God, what a terrible mistake. I’m still kicking myself. Every time I’m in a Nike Store, I get mad. I could have been making money off of everybody buying Nikes right now.” According to an estimate in The Winning Time Johnson was unable to accept the Nike deal, which would have cost him an estimated $5.2B.

Spencer Haywood tried to kill his former coach.

Haywood’s time with the Lakers ended abruptly due to cocaine use. After he fell asleep at the bench, Westhead fired Haywood. Haywood revealed later that Westhead was angry with Haywood and hired a mobster in order to hurt him. “It was not a [murder]You plotted per se, that is you sat out front of his house and waited for him to return. They’re more like, you know, ‘Spike his drink’ or ‘Spike his car’ or something,” Haywood spoke DeadspinIn 2014.

Haywood claimed that he never actually attempted to hurt Westhead, “but it was an evil intent,” he continued. “I know my God is watching me at this time. And I really went off my rocker.” In that same interview, the retired basketball star said that he now believes the Lakers organization was trying to help him by suspending him.

Haywood was Given his 1980 championship ringsAbdul-Jabbar was a former teammate and friend. The Lakers paid him the half-million dollars he earned in playoffs four years later.


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