When Hugh Hefner makes his way to Staples Center on Tuesday, there’s one Lakers front-office employee the Playboy purveyor will most certainly have his eye on - Bonnie-Jill Laflin.
Laflin is a former model-slash-actress-slash-TV reporter who serves as a scout for the L.A. b-ball squad. But when she sits herself down at courtside to watch prospective players, who’s checking out who?
Barbara Matson of the BOSTON GLOBE shares the bountiful story of Bonnie-Jill. The former NBA & NFL cheerleader began working for the Lakers a few years ago “performing various TV duties for the team” - and probably other various duties for Dr. Jerry Buss which we’d rather not think about.
She must have done something right
to for Buss, as the Lakers owner promoted her to a scouting role two years ago. And that’s not the only position Bonnie occupies, as she also serves as assistant GM for the Lakers’ Developmental League team, the D-Fenders.
Laflin says that Lakers Executive VP (and boss’s daughter) Jeanie Buss was instrumental in helping her climb the corporate sports ladder (probably so guys below could look up her skirt). It was reportedly Jeannie’s idea to have a female scout on the team, and the Lakers liked Laflin enough to give her the job.
Although Bonnie admits she doesn’t have the big brains for basketball, she does have other outstanding tributes … um, like her willingness to learn:
“Every time I go to a game it’s just more and more that I learn from the different scouts around me and it’s nice because they’ve kind of taken me under their wing.”
Well, who wouldn’t want to have her under their wings?
But Bonnie believes she has one big advantage over the other pro scouts - woman’s intuition:
“The thing that Jeannie likes is there’s something I’ll pick up that maybe a male won’t pick up, like the chemistry between a player and a coach or his teammates. Little things that I think make a big difference. You don’t want a kid on your team that’s a nut case. Stuff like that makes me a little more unique when I scout.”
We can also see other factors working in Bonnie’s favor during her scouting missions - such as creating a valuable distraction. While she has her eyes on the players, the scouts from the other 29 NBA teams all have their eyes on her.
But just because she has a front office job, it doesn’t mean Laflin has closed the books on her modeling & acting career:
“If it’s the right role or shoot, that the Lakers approve of, I will consider it.”
Considering another Laker employee’s penchant for previous provocative pics, that’s good news for Hef.