Tuesday, was a darker occasion.
“Well, I will be there,” Kobe said. “And, you know, I think it's devastating for everybody, obviously. I think that what people don’t know about Michael was the amount of time he put in to bringing so much joy to so many people all over the world. I mean, it wasn’t like, you know, he’d wake up one night and think of ‘Billie Jean’ and go in the studio and it’s voila.”
Magic Johnson, maybe the greatest Laker of them all, had a cameo in Jackson’s Remember the Time video (along with Eddie Murphy). Now a prominent businessman as well, the 6’9” Johnson was hard to miss among the many celebrities at Staples Center.He said Jackson influenced him on the court.
"(He)made me a better point guard and basketball player as I watched him be so great," Johnson said.
Jeannie Buss, the Executive Vice President of Business Operations of the Lakers — which means she runs the business end — as well as the daughter of team owner Jerry Buss and girlfriend of coach Phil Jackson, was active on Twitter for the first part of the ceremony.
She made three tweets:
here at MJ memorial - stage is beautiful w/flowers I have a lump in my throat and weepy
very quiet after Smokey Robinson read comments from Diana Ross and Nelson Mandela
overwhelmed with sadness - service has not started but no more tweets from me until over RIP MJ
This fall, Staples Center will return to being a place of celebration for these three. But with all the great basketball memories now also will mingle the memory of Jackson when they enter the building.