The Winning Time cast features John C. Reilly, Quincy Isaiah and Jason Clarke. This info article contains minor spoilers for Max Borenstein and Jim Hecht’s HBO series. Check out more streaming guides in Vague Visages’ Know the Cast section.
Winning Time chronicles the Los Angeles Lakers’ success during the 1980s. When businessman Jerry Buss acquires the NBA franchise, the team earns the #1 pick and selects Earvin “Magic” Johnson. The storyline follows the behind-the-scenes drama as various players and executives seek power within the organization. Here’s every main player in Winning Time, an adaptation of Jeff Pearlman’s 2014 book Showtime: Magic, Kareem, Riley, and the Los Angeles Lakers Dynasty of the 1980s.
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘Minx’
Winning Time Cast: John C. Reilly as Jerry Buss
Character Profile: An American businessman who believes in sex and basketball. He makes several financial deals in order to acquire the Los Angeles Lakers. Jerry lives a playboy lifestyle and educates his daughter, Jeanie, about his business.
Reilly’s Resume: Reed Rothchild in Boogie Nights (1997), Amos Hart in Chicago (2002), Dewey Cox in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story (2007), Dale Doback in Step Brothers (2008), Fred Gwynne/Herman Munster in Licorice Pizza (2021)
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘Slow Horses
Winning Time Cast: Quincy Isaiah as Earvin “Magic” Johnson
Character Profile: The Lakers’ #1 draft pick from Michigan State University. He receives advice from his father, Earvin Sr., and initially considers a return to college. Magic thrives both on and off the court.
Isaiah’s Resume: TV Debut in Winning Time
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘The Bubble’
Winning Time Cast: Jason Clarke as Jerry West
Character Profile: The Lakers’ head coach and a former star player. He clashes with colleagues and remains bitter about repeatedly losing during several playoff runs. Jerry believes that Magic is too tall and too soft.
Clarke’s Resume: Dan in Zero Dark Thirty (2012), Malcolm in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes (2014), Henry McAllan in Mudbound (2017), Ed White in First Man (2018), Louis in Pet Sematary (2019)
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘All Hail’
Winning Time Cast: Gaby Hoffmann as Claire Rothman
Character Profile: The general manager of The Forum. She is known as the first woman to put a rock and roll act in a sports arena. Claire tries to gauge Jerry Buss’ intentions.
Hoffman’s Resume: Karin Kinsella in Field of Dreams (1989), Maizy Russell in Uncle Buck (1989), Samantha Albertson in Now and Then (1995), Ali Pfefferman/Rose Pfefferman in Transparent (2014-19), Viv in C’mon C’mon (2021)
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘Moonshot
Winning Time Cast: Hadley Robinson as Jeanie Buss
Character Profile: Jerry’s teenage daughter. She becomes “Miss Palisades” and inquires about her father’s business strategies. Jeanie learns about the Lakers organization inside and out.
Robinson’s Resume: Sallie Gardiner Moffat in Little Women (2019), Caroline in Fosse/Verdon (2019), Lily/Charlotte in Utopia (2020), Laure in I’m Thinking of Ending Things (2020), Vivian in Moxie (2021)
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘The Girl from Plainville’
Winning Time Cast: DeVaughn Nixon as Norm Nixon
Character Profile: The Lakers’ point guard. He feels threatened by Magic’s arrival and urges him to return to college. The character is portrayed by Nixon’s real-life son.
Nixon’s Resume: Danny Dyson in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991), Fletcher in The Bodyguard (1992), Omar in The Secret Life of the American Teenager (2011-13), Darius Davis in Runaways (2017-19), Kane Hamilton in Snowfall (2022)
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘CODA’
Winning Time Cast: Solomon Hughes as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar
Character Profile: The Lakers’ star player. He pursues a movie career and clashes with people because of his blunt manner of speech. Kareem receives less attention when Magic becomes the Lakers’ new star.
Hughes’ Resume: TV Debut in Winning Time
Read More at VV — Know the Cast: ‘Pachinko’
The Winning Time cast also includes Tamera Tomakili (Fruitvale Station, Run the World), Brett Cullen (The Dark Knight Rises, Joker), Stephen Adly Guirgis (Vice, Motherless Brooklyn), Spencer Garrett (Yes Man, Once Upon a Time in Hollywood), Sarah Ramos (American Dreams, Parenthood), Molly Gordon (Animal Kingdom, Booksmart), Joey Brooks (Molly’s Game, Succession) and Rob Morgan (Stranger Things, Mudbound).
Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.