The Lakers were a troublesome team off-the-court. As mentioned previously, drugs and women were always available to them. Many of them took the opportunity as there was little risk, high reward.
Nothing could go viral quickly and spread like today, so only a snitch could tell people about what really was going on.
Unfortunately for the Lakers, there was someone: Mark Landsberger.
Most people reading this likely don’t know who he is. He was a role player for the Lakers from 1980-83. His teammates described him as a bit slow though he was well-intentioned.
Landsberger told his wife everything. Though the backlash wasn’t as strong, most of the players’ wives and girlfriends had a suspicion of what was going on.
Someone even more aware of these issues was Jerry West, a Lakers’ advisor who became GM in 1982. West knew of what went on and obviously did not like, but did little to combat it because of the Lakers’ success.
He really only went after one player: Norm Nixon. Nixon started alongside Magic and was a fairly efficient scorer. However, he envied Magic for the attention he got and clashed with almost the entire team.
Nixon was even followed by private investigators hired by West who suspected Nixon was doing cocaine. He was eventually traded down the coast to the Clippers in 1983.
Even Owner Jerry Buss was eccentric. Buss was just like the players, always around women. He was middle-aged at that point but was always around women who were about 30 years younger than him.
Though that seems utterly wrong, Buss was generous to these women. He would actually help them financially and even paid for most of their college expenses. Buss also kept in touch with most of them to make sure they were doing fine afterward.
Buss was much better than the previous owner, Jack Kent Cooke. Like Buss, Cooke had plenty of women around him, however, he was not as respectful as Buss.
I won’t get into specifics, but I would compare Cooke to Mr. Burns as they both care little about other people. Even the Lakers’ front office was racy.