Linda Rambis Rumors
Ham could give this whole concept a strong nudge by benching Westbrook, but the rookie coach brought him back for the final four-plus minutes in Sunday’s fall-from-ahead loss to the Trail Blazers with the Lakers up 98-90. Yet another ace colleague, Ben Golliver of The Washington Post, was in the building and has this report from the scene on how it appeared as though Ham was catering to Westbrook’s past All-Star stature when he could have been reducing his role in Sunday’s crunch time. Questions about and criticism of Jeanie Buss’ inner circle are inspired, above all, by the team’s ongoing struggles.
“My dad lived a very loud, open-book life. And didn’t apologize for it. It’s a family business. So people can relate, the family aspect of it,” Jeanie Buss says. “We’re a family that’s known in the media. It’s a lot.” Buss says there aren’t many surprises in the documentary that hardcore fans don’t already know. “Everyone knows the wins and losses. Everyone knows the trades and free agent signings. I think people were interested in understanding the conflict I had with my brother. There is nothing to be hidden or kept secret. I think people didn’t understand the relationship that I have with Linda Rambis (a longtime friend and adviser), or obviously my very high-profile relationship with (former head coach) Phil Jackson.”
Based on conversations with those in the know, a ranking of the most powerful Laker decision-making officials would be: executive director/special projects Linda Rambis, director of basketball affairs Kurt Rambis, president of business operations Tim Harris (who dated Jeanie Buss long ago) and general manager Rob Pelinka.
“In terms of Linda Rambis, she does not have a role in the basketball department; her role is, as it’s been for the last almost 40 years, is as my advisor,” Buss said. “She and I have worked together for years and years and years. Why that has become an issue for people, I don’t understand.”
Magic Johnson: Hanging out with my Lakers family at Kareem’s 75th birthday celebration! My sister who I love very much Jeanie Buss, Linda Rambis, and GM Rob Pelinka. pic.twitter.com/Wqk3ZEYK8f
Former players, not just Magic Johnson, and other Lakers power brokers such as Kurt and Linda Rambis have always held prominent voices in Los Angeles’ decision making. Pelinka is said to still have strong support from those Lakers figures. “His relationship with Kurt and Linda and Jeanie, it is very much a mom and pop shop,” one assistant general manager told B/R.
Asked if he believed the Lakers’ front office could construct a winner around him, James offered support. “Very confident. They’ve done it. They’ve shown me that,” he said of the 2020 NBA title the Lakers won. “Ever since I got here, the front office of Jeanie, Linda [Rambis], Kurt [Rambis], everybody, has welcomed me with open arms and has given me an opportunity to play for a historical franchise and welcomed my family in. And I just try to give back my part of the game and inspire kids and inspire people that want to follow the Lakers and put them back at a level that they’re accustomed to being. And that’s always been my focus.”