Magic Johnson Plays Pro League Basketball Game, 10 Years After Retirement, HIV Announcement
Former Los Angeles Laker Magic Johnson played basketball before a crowd of 4,700 fans at a Summer Pro League game on Saturday, nearly 10 years after he announced he was HIV-positive, the Los Angeles Times reports. On Nov. 7, 1991, Johnson "stunned the world" with the news of his retirement and HIV infection, an announcement that at the time "sounded like a death sentence." The former NBA star, who appeared to be in top physical shape, said, "I wouldn't say [the virus] is gone, but I would say it is sleeping. And I'm gonna let it sleep for 20 to 30 more years." Johnson has become "big not only in the world of AIDS awareness and prevention, but also AIDS acceptance," the Los Angeles Times says. Former UCLA player Ed O'Bannon, whose team beat Johnson's team 134-130, said, "The most amazing thing for me is the education. How much has he educated the world on AIDS?" (Plaschke, Los Angeles Times, 7/15).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.