The Showtime Lakers were notorious for their exploits both on and off of the court, as Magic Johnson and company were known to have plenty of fun in Los Angeles (and on the road) while also winning championships.
As the Lakers got bigger in profile, they started to attract celebrities to their games and their parties. One of the celebrities that spent a lot of time in the Lakers orbit in the 80s was actor Rob Lowe, who was reaching fame right alongside Magic Johnson and used to travel with the team sometimes on road trips, particularly in the playoffs. As Lowe explained recently on Pablo Torre Finds Out, he was single and it was the 80s, so he was there to have a good time, and while the Lakers loved him, head coach Pat Riley wasn’t a big fan of him being around the team and once banned him from the team hotel because he was a “bad influence.”
Pat Riley once had to ban Rob Lowe from staying at the same hotel as Magic Johnson during the Showtime Lakers era. 😭 pic.twitter.com/00a37ip9WE
— Pablo Torre Finds Out (@pablofindsout) November 29, 2023
“Because it was the 80s and I was single…I was a very bad influence on the Lakers,” Lowe said. “The Lakers loved me! Riley, not so much. It was during the format where it was like 2-3-2, so you’d be in Detroit forever. Three games in Detroit, you’re like, there’s not a lot to do up by the Pontiac Silverdome, so you can do the math. And Riley was not a fan of that.”
It’s a shame Winning Time got canceled before we could get to the “parties with Rob Lowe” section of the Showtime Lakers story, but as he says, you can use your imagination to figure out what they were up to at the team hotel in Detroit to kill time.