Thursday, November 7, 2013
Flashback: Magic reveals illness
|Magic Johnson was one of the league's most beloved players when he announced his retirement at age 32.|
On this day in 1991, Lakers superstar Magic Johnson announced to the world in a press conference that he had tested positive for HIV and was immediately retiring from basketball. The three-time NBA MVP and five-time NBA champion almost instantaneously became the face of AIDS/HIV in America, and he founded the Magic Johnson Foundation shortly after to help raise money to combat the disease. Despite his retirement, Johnson, now 54, was voted by fans into the 1992 All-Star Game (in which he was ultimately crowned MVP) and played for the legendary Dream Team in the 1992 Olympics. Since his playing days ended, Johnson has continued his activism work and been involved in broadcasting and other business ventures. In 2012, he became part of the ownership group that bought the Los Angeles Dodgers. Back in 1991, he closed his news conference with these words: "I'm going to go on. I'm going to beat this, and I'm going to have fun."