Magic vs. Wooden? Vote in the final matchup in the basketball regional

Lakers great Magic Johnson in 1987.
(Rick Stewart / Getty Images)

Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the tournament.

The fourth round in the basketball regional “Biggest Icon in L.A. Sports History” is over, and two tough matchups were decided by relatively big margins. After receiving just over 30,000 votes over three platforms, Magic Johnson defeated Kobe Bryant with 63% of the vote, and John Wooden defeated Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 58%-42%. To see the entire basketball regional, click here.

Now, who do you vote for between Magic and Wooden?


Some rules.

1. There are four regionals, with 32 people in each regional, seeded from No. 1 to No. 32. The winner of each regional will face off in the Final Four. Those two winners will meet in the championship round.

2. With each matchup, there will be a link for you to click on to vote. You can also send your votes by email by clicking here. Or you can vote on Twitter by clicking here.

3. When voting, ask yourself “When I think L.A. sports, whom do I think of first?” and vote for that person.

4. A brief sentence or two accompanies each entrant below. It is not meant to be an all-encompassing list of their accomplishments, just a brief reminder of why they are on this list.

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So without further ado, let’s get to the final round of the basketball regional. Voting ends at midnight Sunday. Remember, you can vote by email by clicking here, on Twitter by clicking here, or you can click on the link after each matchup.

Biggest L.A. Sports Icon tournament, final round of basketball regional)

No. 1 Magic Johnson vs. No. 2 John Wooden


Magic Johnson: Led the Lakers to five NBA titles and was the floor general behind the “Showtime” era. Now part-owner of the Dodgers and noted businessman.

How he got here
Routed No. 32 Paul Westphal in the first round, 98.6%-1.4%
Defeated No. 16 Cheryl Miller in the second round, 96.7%-3.3%.
Defeated No. 9 Chick Hearn in the third round, 75%-25%.
Defeated No. 4 Kobe Bryant in the fourth round, 63%-37%

John Wooden: The legendary UCLA men’s basketball coach guided the team to 10 national titles, including seven in a row. Renowned for his “Pyramid of Success.”

How he got here
Defeated No. 31 Chris Paul in the first round, 92.5%-7.5%
Defeated No. 15 Pat Riley in the second round, 90.5%-9.5%
Defeated No. 7 Shaquille O’Neal in the third round, 85.7%-14.3%
Defeated No. 3 Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in the fourth round, 58%-42%


Vote via Polldaddy

Don’t forget to vote

You can vote one of three ways: Click on each individual Polldaddy link above, click here to vote via email (with all your picks in one email) or vote here via Twitter.

To see the entire basketball regional, click here.



1928: Golfer Betsy Rawls

1949: Race car driver John Force

1959: Golfer Bob Tway

1968: Former King Kevin Todd


1989: Golfer Rory McIlroy


2010: Sportscaster Ernie Harwell, 91


John Force gets his 149th career Funny Car win. Watch it here.

Until next time...

That concludes today’s newsletter. If you have any feedback, ideas for improvement or things you’d like to see, email me at, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.