UTAH JAZZ

Magic Johnson Confirms Fight With Ron Boone As Rookie

Jun 3, 2022, 6:39 PM | Updated: 6:40 pm

magic-johnson-utah-jazz...

Utah Jazz guard Theodore "Blue" Edwards defends Los Angeles Lakers guard Earvin "Magic" Johnson (Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

SALT LAKE CITY – Los Angeles Lakers legend Magic Johnson confirmed that he did get into a scuffle with current Utah Jazz radio analyst Ron Boone when the two were teammates in LA.

In his new documentary “They Call Me Magic,” Johnson retold the story of exchanging blows on the basketball floor with Boone.

The exchange was first documented in the HBO miniseries “Winning Time” but like many elements of the show, the Johnson and Boone interaction was exaggerated.

In episode one of his four-part Apple TV documentary, Johnson detailed the truth behind his fight with Boone.

“We were in practice, I was boxing out Ron Boone,” Johnson said. “All of a sudden I looked up at the rim and the ball, and he had hit me right behind my head really hard, and he was smiling.”

Boone had been in the ABA and the NBA for 10 years before being traded to the Lakers in 1978 and was known for his physical style of play.

“Ron was old school,” former Lakers coach Paul Westhead said. “As tough as they come and he’d look at you and you’d say, ‘Oh what did I do?'”

After Boone’s first season in LA, the Lakers selected Johnson with the top overall pick in the 1979 NBA Draft and brought with him large expectations after leading Michigan State to their first NCAA title.

Johnson’s fame made Lakers veterans wary of Johnson’s flashy reputation.

“He was a target,” Kareem Abdul-Jabbar said. “He just had to be careful.”

Boone in particular wanted to make sure Johnson was aware of his presence on the team.

“Ron would not back down to anybody,” Westhead said. “He told me wanted to let the rookie know that, ‘I’ve been here for 12 years, so don’t mess with me.'”

But Johnson didn’t back down from Boone’s physical play in the now-infamous practice.

“The next time he’s boxing me out, ‘Oh, Ron Boone?’ Let’s see what you got.” Johnson recalled. “You think first of all you drafted the wrong dude? I got some for you. So I ran in as fast as I could and I hit him as hard as I could. He shouldn’t have woke that quiet bear up, so he woke me up.”

Unfortunately, Boone’s time in LA didn’t last long after Johnson’s arrival. The scrappy forward was traded to the Jazz in October of 1979 where Boone would play the final two years of his career, while the Lakers would go on to win the NBA title in their first year with Magic.

The entire “They Call Me Magic” documentary is streaming on Apple TV while “Winning Time” is streaming on HBO. Content in both series may not be appropriate for all audiences.

  • Utah Jazz Scoreboard

  • Utah Jazz Team Leaders

  • Utah Jazz Standings

Utah Jazz

Utah Jazz general manager Justin Zanik...

Ben Anderson

Jazz GM Justin Zanik Returns To Team Post Kidney Surgery

Utah Jazz general manager Justin Zanik has rejoined the team after undergoing a kidney transplant in April.

4 hours ago

Donovan Clingan #32 of the Connecticut Huskies...

Ben Anderson

Utah Jazz Draft Prospect: UConn C Donovan Clingan

UConn guard Donovan Clingan is projected to be selected in the lottery of the 2024 NBA Draft where the Utah Jazz own the tenth pick.

1 day ago

Stephon Castle #5 of the Connecticut Huskies dunks the ball...

Ben Anderson

Utah Jazz Draft Prospect: UConn G Stephon Castle

UConn guard Stephon Castle is projected to be selected in the lottery of the 2024 NBA Draft where the Utah Jazz own the tenth pick.

2 days ago

Lauri-Markkanen-Utah-Jazz-NBA...

Ben Anderson

Utah Jazz Mailbag: Would Title Change Legacies Of Gobert, Conley?

Welcome to the Utah Jazz mailbag where every week our NBA insiders answer your questions on social media about your favorite team.

3 days ago

Jazz Gaming NBA 2K League...

Chandler Holt

NBA 2K League’s Jazz Gaming Looks To Make Noise In Return To Utah

Jazz Gaming, the official NBA 2K League affiliate of the Utah Jazz, made its return to SLC and kicked off its season this month.

3 days ago

Rudy Gobert #27 of the Minnesota Timberwolves celebrates with Mike Conley #10...

Ben Anderson

Will NBA Parity Help The Utah Jazz?

The dynasty era in the NBA appears to finally be over, and newfound parity should be good news for the Utah Jazz.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Follow @kslsports...

KSL Give-A-Thon

The KSL Sports Zone, KSL 5 TV, FM100.3, 103.5 The Arrow, and KSL NewsRadio have teamed up to raise money for the kids being served by Primary Children’s Care!

ksl-sports-newsletter...

KSL Sports

KSL Sports Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the KSL Sports newsletter. Get the latest Utah sports news delivered to your inbox.

...

KSL Sports

Jazz Notes Newsletter: Sign Up Now

Sign up today for the Jazz Notes newsletter. Get insider analysis, game recaps and opportunities to win tickets!

Follow @kslsports...

The Road Home Mediathon 2023

The KSL Sports Zone and KSLSports.com are proud to support the all-day Mediathon 2023 at the Road Home, an annual tradition to raise money and other essential items for the Road Home, a Homeless Shelter.

3 kids wearing real salt lake jerseys smiling...

Real Salt Lake

6 Reasons You Need to Experience a RSL Matchday

RSL Games are a great way to spend time with your family with fun activities, good food, and traditions you can only experience at the field.

High angle view of the beautiful Rose Bowl Stadium...

KSL Digital Sales

How to Prepare for the 2023 Rose Bowl

Everything you need to know to plan your 2023 Rose Bowl trip in Pasadena, California. This year, the Utes will face Penn State.

Magic Johnson Confirms Fight With Ron Boone As Rookie