Magic Johnson: Isiah Spread Rumors I Was Gay

Thomas denies accusation, feels 'really hurt'
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 22, 2009 4:41 PM CDT
In this April 16, 2008, file photo, New York Knicks coach Isiah Thomas watches from the bench as his team played the Indiana Pacers in the first half of NBA basketball action in Indianapolis.   (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)
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(Newser) – Magic Johnson blames former friend Isiah Thomas for spreading rumors that Johnson was gay after he announced he had HIV in 1991. "Isiah kept questioning people about it,'' Magic writes. "I couldn't believe that. The one guy I thought I could count on had all these doubts. It was like he kicked me in the stomach.'' Johnson makes the accusations in When The Game Was Ours, a forthcoming book with Larry Bird. Johnson adds that he and others blackballed Thomas from the 1992 Olympic Dream Team.

Thomas denies spreading rumors. "I'm really hurt, and I really feel taken advantage of for all these years," he tells Sports Illustrated. "I didn't know he felt this way. Magic acted and responded off some really bad information that he got." Of the Olympic revelation, he says: "I'm glad that he's finally had the nerve and the courage to stand up and say it was him, as opposed to letting Michael Jordan take the blame for it all these years."