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Basketball enthusiasts around the world said a decision to allow players to wear religious headgear in competition will encourage more people to play the sport because it gives participants the right to practice their faith and focus on playing ball.

In a move that drastically reshapes the leadership structure of one of the NBA's most illustrious franchises two days before the league's trade deadline, the Lakers have named Hall of Famer Magic Johnson their new president of basketball operations while firing longtime general manager Mitch Kupchak and removing Jim Buss as executive vice president of basketball operations.