A retired L.A. legend played one-on-one against then-NBA hopeful Robert Horry.
Retired seven-time NBA champion power forward Robert Horry was a recent guest on former Showtime Era Lakers shooting guard Byron Scott’s new podcast, Off The Dribble With Byron Scott.
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Horry, who was a Laker himself on three title-winning L.A. teams with Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant, reflected on his experiences trying out for the Lakers while still an NBA draft prospect out of the University of Alabama.
At the time, Horry was a Second-Team All-SEC honoree and and an SEC All-Defensive Team selection. L.A. possessed the No. 15 pick in the draft, and had him in for a workout with the club. And he would go on to play one-on-one against a very decorated Lakers legend.
This anecdote is transcribed below:
“I got here to LA, [the Lakers] said, ‘Oh we’re going to make you play one-on-one with someone.’ I think it’s another guy who they’re looking at. And out walks Magic… and I don’t think the dude ever jumped over two inches, and [he] wore my a** out.”
Horry praises Johnson, then retired from the NBA (though he would have been gearing up for the 1992 Olympics at the time), for showing him how to win by thinking the game.
The 6’10” forward was eventually selected by the Houston Rockets with the 11th pick in the draft in 1992. He would go on to win consecutive league titles with Hakeem Olajuwon’s Houston Rockets in 1994 and 1995, then three straight with L.A. from 2000-2002 (he was a Laker from 1997-2003), and finally two with the San Antonio Spurs in 2005 and 2007.
Scott’s podcast is well worth a listen. As a 6’4″ wing, Scott won three titles with the Lakers himself, while playing for the club from 1983-1993. He also coached the team during Kobe Bryant’s final two seasons, from 2014-2016.
With Horry off the board, the Lakers drafted consensus Second-Team All-American shooting guard Anthony Peeler out of the University of Missouri with their 1992 selection. He would go on to play four seasons with L.A.