Posted Aug 11 2009 8:00AM
It's been almost 18 years since Earvin Johnson Jr. announced his retirement at a somber news conference in which he revealed he had tested positive for HIV. It's been more than 13 years, after a triumphant comeback with the Lakers, since Johnson played in his final NBA game.
All this week, as Johnson approaches his 50th birthday (it's on Friday), NBA TV will celebrate the life and career of the man known simply as "Magic," an athlete who transformed the NBA, a businessman who has made successful inroads into communities where others would not go and a man who has given hope to many infected with HIV.
Here's a brief look at what NBA TV has in store this week:
Monday -- A look at Magic's rookie season (1979-80), including replays of full games in which he made his rookie debut and his first run at an NBA title in a six-game Finals against the 76ers.
Tuesday -- Repeats of the Lakers' classic Finals clinching games, including Game 7 of the 1988 Finals against the Pistons.
Wednesday -- More Hardwood Classics, this time key games in the 1987 and '88 seasons in which the Lakers won back-to-back championships.
Thursday -- The best of one of the best rivalries in NBA history: Magic vs. Larry Bird, including the 1984 matchup in Game 7 of the Finals between the Lakers and Bird's Celtics.
Friday --The best Magic Johnson games, shown in their entirety, and the premiere of a new show Magic's 50! at 6 p.m. ET.
|NBA TV Celebrates a Magic Birthday|
|NOTE: ALL TIMES EASTERN|
|USA vs China Exhibition Game Full Highlights|
Team USA outscores China by 38 points in the paint in route to a 106-57 victory tonight in Los Angeles.
|Simmons Summer Highlights|
Check out the Sixers rookie sensation, Ben Simmons, as he makes his presence felt in the Las Vegas Summer League!
|Leadership Together: Jordan Breaks Silence|
Carmelo Anthony reacts to Michael Jordan's speaking out on the shootings of African-Americans and the police.
|Leadership Together: The Next Step|
Carmelo Anthony talks about the next step in keeping the discussion open and prospering.
|Leadership Together: Police, Youth and Education|
Carmelo Anthony stated the youth open the discussion about the need for respect, communication and education between officers and civilians.