On Saturday, the Los Angeles Lakers announced that Earvin "Magic" Johnson requested that the team remove him from the team directory and eliminate his honorary Vice President title.
Johnson sold off his ownership stake in the team in 2010, but due to the point forward's history with the Lakers and late owner Dr. Jerry Buss, the Lakers kept Johnson on as an honorary V.P. in their team directory.
In 2012, Johnson led an ownership group in a $2 billion acquisition of the LA Dodgers, and in many ways, became a direct competitor with the Lakers. Seemingly, that potential conflict of interest could have taken Johnson off the Lakers' directory, but the team opted to keep its former superstar in its official listing.
However, as the years have passed, Johnson has been increasingly critical of the Lakers' organization, particularly Lakers part owner and vice president of basketball operations Jim Buss. On social media and in television interviews, Johnson has spoken out repeatedly to undermine Buss' authority.
Along with the announcement, the Lakers issued a statement which specifically referenced social media and hinted that Johnson's Twitter comments may have played a part in the decision to officially part ways and remove the honorary title.
"Earvin will always be a revered and beloved member of the Lakers family, but he does not have a position or role with the organization at this time," team spokesman John Black said. "He is not an advisor or a consultant, and his opinions, comments and social media posts are solely his, and do not represent or reflect those of Lakers ownership or management. Hopefully this will eliminate any confusion over this issue in the future."