The investigation was all for nothing.
News broke yesterday that Philadelphia 76ers general manager Elton Brand stopped Ben Simmons from having a sit down meeting with Lakers president of basketball operations Magic Johnson. Simmons and Johnson were planning to talk about what it’s like to be a big point guard in the NBA and Simmons simply wanted a bit of advice. Johnson said it could only happen if the 76ers approved and it didn’t. In light of all this, the NBA launched an investigation to see if the Lakers tampered with Simmons, although today in a statement, the NBA made it clear that neither party broke the rules.
“We have concluded that Magic Johnson’s statements regarding Ben Simmons do not constitute a tampering violation,” the NBA said according to ESPN. “The Philadelphia 76ers initiated the contact with the Los Angeles Lakers by requesting a meeting between Johnson and Simmons. Both organizations ultimately concluded that such a meeting did not make sense at this time but in that context, Johnson’s response to a media inquiry regarding Simmons does not run afoul of league rules.”
Yesterday, Brand reached out to Magic to apologize for any insinuation that Johnson may have tampered with his star player. The Lakers have been guilty of tampering in the past, so it’s clear that the NBA investigation was simply to cover their bases.