Magic Johnson announces he's leaving ESPN

Thursday October 10th, 2013

Magic Johnson is part of an investment group that purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2012.
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Magic Johnson has left ESPN.

In a surprising move announced Thursday afternoon, the NBA Countdown analyst said he was leaving the network due to an increased schedule and other commitments.

"I love ESPN," Johnson said, in a statement. " Unfortunately, due to the nature of my schedule and other commitments, I don't feel confident that I can continue to devote the time needed to thrive in my role. I will always feel a strong connection to the ESPN family and I enjoyed working with them very much. I'd like to thank John Skipper, John Wildhack, Mark Gross, Kim Belton, Amina Hussein, Mark Summer, Adam Hertzog, Bob Rauscher, Stuart Scott, Mike Wilbon, Jon Barry, Jalen Rose, Bill Simmons, Chris Broussard and the many others at ESPN for the wonderful opportunity to talk about the game I love. They are the best in the business."

Johnson joined ESPN in 2010, having been a studio analyst for TNT from 2001-2008 and for NBC. He was part of the investment group that bought the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2012 from Frank McCourt for a record $2 billion.

"Earvin 'Magic' Johnson informed us today that he'll no longer be part of our NBA coverage due to his other commitments," said ESPN Executive Vice President, Production John Wildhack, in a statement. "We appreciate Magic's contributions and wish him well in his future endeavors. We are in the process of determining our NBA commentator roles for the upcoming season."

The news comes on the same day reported that Doris Burke had been named one of the analysts for NBA Countdown.

SI Apps
We've Got Apps Too
Get expert analysis, unrivaled access, and the award-winning storytelling only SI can provide - from Peter King, Tom Verducci, Lee Jenkins, Seth Davis, and more - delivered straight to you, along with up-to-the-minute news and live scores.