Support for LAist comes from
We Explain L.A.
Stay Connected

Share This

News

Mr. Jackson (and his Lakers) Go To Washington

LAist relies on your reader support, not paywalls.
Freely accessible local news is vital. Please power our reporters and help keep us independent with a donation today.

Today the LA Lakers will be meeting President Obama at the White House in honor of their last season NBA championship win, according to the Daily News. Heading to the nation's capital is the team, along with Coach Phil Jackson and Hall-of-Famer Magic Johnson, all of whom will join President Obama for a ceremony in the White House's Palm Room.

Obama is a basketball enthusiast; he played in college and continues to use the sport as a social and stress-relieving activity with members of his staff. Last season he "predicted that the Lakers would defeat the Orlando Magic in six games in last season's best-of-seven NBA finals," and reportedly called up Jackson upon the Lakers' win to offer congratulations. Jackson is an Obama fan, who "donated $2,300 to Obama's primary campaign in 2007, the maximum amount allowable under federal law, according to Federal Election Commission records."

One member of the team, however, is taking the White House visit in stride. Ron Artest, who wasn't part of the championship team, said: "I'm not that excited to meet him because I look at him as a regular person. That's how he comes across on TV. He doesn't come across as somebody that can't be touched, that's not going to be warm and welcoming."

The meeting is expected to last one hour, and comes a day ahead of the Lakers match-up with the Washington Wizards on the half-way mark of an 8-game and 12-day road trip.