Elton Brand called Magic Johnson to apologize over Simmons debacle
Elton Brand called Magic Johnson to apologize over the Ben Simmons debacle that played out on Monday, according to a report.
On Sunday, Magic had said that he wanted to meet with Simmons and share some tips on how the big guard can become better. Brand, the Philadelphia 76ers’ first-year GM, said on the radio Monday that he blocked such a meeting from happening.
The way the sequence played out made some wonder whether Magic, who is a Hall of Fame player turned front office executive with the Los Angeles Lakers, was interfering with another team’s player, as he’s been known to do. What seemed to escalate the matter was the NBA saying they would investigate any potential inappropriate contact between the Lakers and Simmons.
After getting dragged into a public issue, the Lakers issued a statement to say that Philly actually reached out initially to say Simmons wanted to talk with Magic about his playing career. The Lakers responded by saying they needed written permission from the Sixers, and Brand apparently declined. Clearly Brand was not the original 76ers employee who reached out to the Lakers.
With the whole thing going public and making the Lakers look bad, Brand called Magic to apologize, according to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne.
Elton Brand called Magic Johnson Monday afternoon to apologize for insinuating that the Lakers had called —unprompted— to ask permission for Johnson to speak with Sixers forward Ben Simmons in a radio interview Monday morning, league sources told ESPN.
— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) February 12, 2019
Maybe this apology can help everyone put the whole controversy to bed.