Magic Johnson is a straight talker. None of that fancy, modern, mumbo-jumbo for him. No sir, he says what he means and he means what he says. So when word spread that Klay Thompson thought this Warriors team would be able to beat the "Showtime" Lakers, you knew inevitably that Magic would chime in.
A few thoughts before we discuss, because in thinking about Magic Johnson and the "Showtime" Lakers I suddenly had the realization:
1.) Dude's name is frickin "Magic."
I mean, it's easy to forget that the word-name we all use to refer to Earvin Johnson, Jr., retired basketball phenom, is "Magic." Like, what would I have to do to get some crazy nickname that superseded my God-given (well, parent-given) name of Bram? Rob a bank? Be hella good at robbing banks? Start calling me "Ol' Banksy" Kincheloe? Or is Banksy already taken?
2.) The "Showtime" Lakers were called frickin "Showtime."
Not the "Funtime" Lakers, or the "Magic's Playground" Lakers, or even the "Is Jack Nicholson high AF right now, and who is that pretty blonde sitting courtside with him?" Lakers. Nope, "Showtime" it was and "Showtime" it will be until a comet crashes into the planet. Or until Trump gets the nuclear launch codes. Maybe it's just me, but every time I hear the word "Showtime," I can't help but envision Dr. Jerry Buss sitting in his palatial mansion -- bourbon in one hand, champagne in the other, a cigar in his mouth, sunglasses fogged up from the perspiration in the room -- welcoming a group of, um, ladies into his den. He smiles from behind his glasses, raises the bourbon hand as a sort of salute to the night to come, and says, simply, "Showtime!"
Again, maybe that's just me. Anyways, now that we got the whole naming thing out of the way, we can move on.
The other night, after the Warriors had turned the Cavs' soul into a muddy entry rug, Klay Thompson proclaimed that the Warriors were better than Magic Johnson's Showtime Warriors. It was an off the cuff comment. Backing up, someone asked Draymond Green how this team stacked up against historically great teams. Dray's response was actually pretty spot on, and shined (shown? that word is strange) a light on the team's thinking as they approach history.
In which Klay Thompson jokes that these Warriors are better than the '80s Showtime Lakers, a team his dad played on. pic.twitter.com/XALuS7w9cR— Baxter Holmes (@BaxterHolmes) June 6, 2016
It's true. There's no way to compare different teams, because (until Elon Musk invents time travel) we'll never be able to pit them against one another in any other arena than our fertile imaginations. But, oh, how fun those mind-games can be!
Taking a shot at his father, Mychal Thompson (who played on that Lakers team), Klay jumped in as Draymond talked and made a funny little joke.
Ha! Laughs! Mychal even chimed in, agreeing with his son's #HotTake.
But, as we all know, the internet loves a good controversy. The internet feeds itself off of seven hundred word thought pieces about Klay's motives for saying such a thing. (I am aware I am feeding the beast currently. The beasts needs be fed! It's not my fault! It has us all in its icy grip and demands endless conteeeeeeent!)
And so here we are. Magic Johnson finally chimed in.
I disagree with Mychal Thompson and his son Klay, my "Showtime" Lakers would beat the Warriors.— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) June 7, 2016
Which spun off into a thousand other takes on that take.
Was waiting for Magic to say something. I like '82 playoff LAL over GS. Length + speed + KAJ. Peaked in a scary way. https://t.co/gAX0FHhonB— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) June 7, 2016
So tough to compare eras now b/c of threes. The best '80s teams ignored the 3-point line - if you time machine'd them, they'd all use it.— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) June 7, 2016
"We never saw two guys that could shoot like Steph and Klay. But I'd be wearing them down, we'd be wearing them down." -@MagicJohnson on GSW— First Take (@FirstTake) June 7, 2016
Favorite take of the takes? This particular take:
I don’t know. I’m all for confidence but you guys are in your 50’s and 60’s at this point. https://t.co/CSZkAWciy1— Zach Harper (@talkhoops) June 7, 2016
--- = ---
So what does it all mean? Could the Warriors really beat the Showtime Lakers?
You ready for the hottest take of them all?
I honestly don't care.
Until Elon Musk invents time travel -- or reconstructive anti-aging cream that can return Magic, Kareem Abdul-Jabar, Mychal Thompson, and James Worthy to their 1980's bodies -- it's a completely mute point. I don't really get hyped about these arguments. Because, what can you really do?
Were the Warriors the best team in this season? I believe so, yes. The Thunder put the fear of God in them, but yes. Yes, they are the best.
Was Curry the first unanimous MVP? Yes, this is also true.
Them's the facts. Anything else is purely conjecture.
Last thought: Just kidding, I love these arguments. If the Warriors win two more games, they will be the greatest team of all time. The 80's Lakers and the 90's Bulls can go [REDACTED FOR THE SAKE OF ALL THE CHILDREN IN ATTENDANCE] if it makes them feel any better.