Magic Johnson Cosigns Comparisons That Angel Reese, Caitlin Clark Are Rivals Like He And Larry Bird In The ’80s

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Last week, sports journalist Jemele Hill compared the rivalry between Angel Reese and Caitlin Clark to former NBA players Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, who started a similar rivalry in college that elevated when both men went into the NBA in the 1980s. On a recent sitdown with talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, former Los Angeles Lakers legend, agreed with Hill’s assessment.

On June 6, Magic appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! and discussed the recent comparison between the two young WNBA rookies. He did agree that the Reese/Clark rivalry matches the one he had with Bird when they both came into the league, although Bird was drafted in 1978 by the Boston Celtics and Magic in 1979 by the Los Angeles Lakers (as the No.1 overall pick). Bird returned to school, and his team, Indiana State, was undefeated that season, but Magic’s Michigan State team defeated them, taking the national championship. Magic (5X NBA champion) and Bird (3X NBA champion) helped their respective teams win NBA championships.

Magic noted that veterans will be jealous, especially if the rookies come in with a lot of fanfare, as he and Bird experienced.

“Veterans are going to test you,” he told Kimmel. “If they feel that you’ve gotten more money or more publicity, they’re upset about that.”

He also repeated what former NBA player Matt Barnes recently stated: Clark’s teammates can’t allow her to get beat up by opposing players during the game.


‘Now, Caitlin, her teammates gotta come to her defense,” Magic explained. “You can’t allow her to have to fight every battle. But we have to understand that both Caitlin, Angel, and [Cameron] Brink, who plays for my Sparks, they make the WNBA better, and they’re going to be tested by these incredible women who’ve been in the league for a long time. Caitlin is the most popular WNBA player, but she’s not the best at this time. Just like Larry and I, were not the best when we entered the league. We became the best later on by our play. Caitlin still has to play great to become the best WNBA player.”

RELATED CONTENT: Why NIL Deals Have More Brands Investing In College Athletes Over Pros, And Women Athletes’ Dominance In The Arena

Leave a Reply

Recent Posts

Follow Us

Sign up for our Newsletter


Get all latest news and updates.