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Jeanie Buss to Remain in Control of Lakers, Ending Dispute With Brothers

Jeanie Buss' attorney says there will be no "palace coup" over one of the NBA's most storied franchises

A public feud involving Jeanie Buss and her brothers appeared to end Monday with an agreement between the siblings.

The Los Angeles Times reported that Buss and her brothers, Jim and Johny, agreed that she should serve as the Los Angeles Lakers' controlling owner and on its board of directors for as long as the Buss' own the NBA franchise. The siblings asked asked a Los Angeles County Superior Court judge to issue an order on the agreement, the Times reported. 

Streisand also confirmed that Jeanie Buss removed one of her siblings, Jim Buss, as a trustee and replaced him with her younger sister, Janie Buss.

"The message is clear here: Do not underestimate Jeanie Buss," her attorney, Adam Streisand, told the Los Angeles Times. "There is not going to be a palace coup. Not now. Not ever." 

The agreement brings to an end a high-profile sibling fight, the framework for which was set by the four trusts that give the Buss' control over the Lakers. The family trust was set up by Jerry H. Buss, the team's longtime owner, who died in February 2013 at age 80. 

The spat intensified last month when Jim and Johnny Buss organized a shareholders meeting just days after their sister orchestrated a major front-office shakeup. According to documents Jeanie Buss filed earlier this month in Los Angeles Superior Court, her brother Johnny, also a part owner of the Lakers, had given notice that a proposed slate of four people for the Lakers board included himself and his brother, but not Jeanie.

She maintained that Johnny "with the active participation of (brother) Jim breached the express terms of the trust that require them to take all actions reasonably available to them to ensure that (Jeanie) remains the controlling owner" of the NBA franchise.

"By proposing four directors that excludes (Jeanie), Johnny has breached his mandatory obligations ... to take all steps reasonably necessary to ensure the appointment of (Jeanie) as controlling owner," her petition stated.

If Jeanie Buss was not elected to the board, she could not be elected controlling owner, according to her court papers, which said she gave her brothers "multiple attempts to correct their breach, and they have made it clear they stand by their breach and intent to act further to implement it at the shareholders' meeting on March 7."

The brothers dropped their request for a board vote March 7 after Jeanie Buss' attorneys moved to seek a temporary restraining order. 

The decision means a probate court trial scheduled for next month won't be necessary.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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