The sports icon backed the city controller, while her opponent Councilman Eric Garcetti picked up the support of his City Council colleague Jan Perry. Conan Nolan reports from Exposition Park for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on March 28, 2013.
Los Angeles sports legend Magic Johnson endorsed Wendy Greuel Thursday as the city controller heads to a runoff election against Councilmember Eric Garcetti in the race for mayor.
The Lakers great and co-owner of the Dodgers joined Greuel on the steps West Angeles Church of God on Crenshaw Boulevard Thursday afternoon to announce the endorsement, the second high-profile backing for Greuel this week. President Bill Clinton endorsed Greuel Monday.
Johnson's past political endorsements include Phil Angelides for California governor in 2005, Hilary Clinton for president and Sen. Barbara Boxer in her 2010 re-election race.
The Hall of Famer developed a significant business presence during his post-NBA years. He is chairman and CEO of Magic Johnson Enterprises, which provides services to and invests in underserved communities. Last year, a group including Johnson bought the Los Angeles Dodgers from Frank McCourt for $2 billion.
The announcement of Johnson's endorsement came just hours after the Garcetti campaign announced it has the support of Councilmember Jan Perry, who finished fourth in the March primary election. A public announcement of the endorsement was scheduled Thursday for the 28th Street YMCA.
Perry had a strong showing in South Los Angeles precincts in the primary. The top two voter-getters advanced from the primary to the May 21 runoff.
Third-place primary finisher Kevin James, a radio broadcaster and attorney, has not endorsed a candidate to replace Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa.