Basketball great and Lansing native Earvin “Magic” Johnson has sold his 4.5 percent stake in the Los Angeles Lakers amid reports he hopes to join Mike Ilitch’s bid to buy the Pistons.

Johnson bought the shares in 1994 for about ten million dollars. The buyer is Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, a successful California physician, businessman and UCLA professor.

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Johnson played all 13 of his NBA seasons with the Lakers, after leading Michigan State to the NCAA championship in 1979. He won the five NBA titles with L.A. Johnson calls the sale a “bittersweet business decision.”

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Johnson has let it be known that he’s interested in playing a signifant role in Ilitch’s pending purchase of the Pistons, although the Ilitch organization hasn’t said publicly whether it expects Johnson to be part of the effort.

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