Sunday, December 12th, 2010 at 12:30 pm  |  145 responses

Avery Johnson: Kobe Bryant on Par With Michael Jordan

Avery trying to butter up Bryant prior to the Lakers playing the Nets this afternoon? Slick, coach. Very slick. From the NY Daily News: “Avery Johnson sees Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan as neck-and-neck when it comes to greatness. ‘[Bryant] could arguably be 1. In some polls, he’ll be 2,’ the Nets coach said yesterday about the players he has seen since he entered the league in 1988. ‘He could be 1-A and Jordan can be 1-B or Jordan, some polls they’ll be flipped. Fortunately I had a chance to play against both of them and now played and coached against Kobe. And boy, sometimes they’re looking like the same player.’”

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  • http://twitter.com/BeezKneezy LA Huey

    Sorry, MJ’s dominance makes this an easy call. Plus, Kobe’s never been on the same level defensively as MJ. Being legitimately in the discussion with MJ does speak to Kobe’s greatness though.

  • Jer dawg

    Thats a good analysis on Avery’s take. COULD he be saying the right things to reporters in the matchup Sunday afternoon? Maybe, but let people talk all they want. Only Jordan doesn’t feel threatened by Kobe because he’s always going to brag about how much more individual awards he’s got over Mr. Bryant. Could 7 rings eclipse 6 rings in the future? Maybe in the observer’s eyes, but guaranteed, never Jordan because he’s got the ego of Jupiter.

  • http://Bulls.com C-Lo_The_Great

    This is a joke. Avery needs to worry about his team. Kobe might end up top 5 all time and definitely #2 all time sg but Jordan was just that much better.

  • Jer dawg

    Thats a good analysis on Avery’s take. COULD he be saying the right things to reporters in the matchup Sunday afternoon? Maybe, but let people talk all they want. Only Jordan doesn’t feel threatened by Kobe because he’s always going to brag about how much more individual awards he’s got over Mr. Bryant. Could 7 rings eclipse 6 rings in the future? Maybe in the observer’s eyes, but guaranteed, never Jordan because he’s got the ego the size off Jupiter.

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com just bcuz

    lol sorry avery i beg to differ

  • JTaylor21

    YOU LIE!!!!!!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    Avery please, look at the numbers!

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    Avery bought to get me started!!

  • RedRum

    Lets put that to an end: MJ, has a higher scoring percentage, was a much defender, won more rings as the leader of his team. Most importantly, MJs worse career shooting percentage was KBs best. end of story

  • rob stewart

    There is one thing Kobe could do to make him better than Jordan. he would have to make the game winning shot to give his team their 6th championship like Jordan did vs UTAH. Then he would have to retire and do something Mike never did, stay retired.

  • http://Soulbanger.tumblr.com Tapion786

    Did any of you read the first line? Don’t you know Kobe plays his best when there’s fire in his eyes?

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    cosign RedRum – Bryant has also NEVER won a playoff series without another all star. NEVER EVER

  • spit hot fiyah

    @redrum what is higher scoring percentage? and he was a much defender………….

  • http://Slamonline.com Hossy

    Anyone see tmac turn back the clock with that dunk last night? He was getting up like it was 2001

  • logues

    honestly, its really not even close. ok, so kobes style of play is very similar of mjs, but mj dominated unlike anyone at his position. also, mj never had a big buy that could dominate the inside. kobe had arguably the greatest center of all time(certaintly the most domimant) and wasnt even the best player on his team for 3 of his rings. now he has the best offensive center in the league. look at the first 3 teams the lakers beat in the finals. not that great. mj was just on a whole other level, and as far as rings, we all know mj woulda won 8 straight

  • Carlos PR

    Kobe might be able to pass Jordan in rings cause he still has like 6 years left to play, he should have had at least 3 mvps, but no, Kobe will never be better than Michael Jordan, Kobe is already the 2nd best SG in history ever, but Jordan was well Jordan, he took a franchise that sucked and converted it to a franchise many people around the world know, as for Kobe? Well he was on a winning team since day one, the Lakers/Celtics are the NBAs Yankees. Succesfull teams with LOTS of money to surround him with good talent.

  • the truth

    kobe’s great but just not on jordan’s level

  • The Philosopher

    Avery Johnson no longer has credibility. He lost it a while ago, anyway.
    His team is beginning to tune him out.
    I used to try to give him the benefit of the doubt, but he really is off on this one.
    What is his problem?

  • james

    i think the most important quote in this story is “Fortunately I had a chance to play against both of them and now played and coached against Kobe. And boy, sometimes they’re looking like the same player.’” None of you Kobe haters/lovers or MJ haters/lovers can say that. So @The Philosopher or any other person commenting (myself, included) just know Avery definitely has more credibility about this than YOU WILL EVER HAVE IN LIFE….EVER

  • The Philosopher

    ^^I hear you. I really do. And, all of that is cute.
    But, at the rate he is going with that kind of rhetoric, we ALL will have more credibility than him. “Yourself included”. Sooner, rather than later.

  • Marvin

    @nbk, I always grimace when there’s an MJ vs Kobe argument because someone ALWAYS ends up belittling Scottie Pippen who was a top 5 player during the 1990s!

  • The Philosopher

    Oh, and James, you are kind of setting yourself up for ridicule by saying who has and who do not have credibility.
    You do not know who I am.
    I am not saying that I an an insider, but you DO NOT know whether I am, or not.
    So, come on down back to Earth.
    Respectfully, and with love, of course…

  • chris

    yeh, cause you know, scottie pippen on the bulls was kinda like adam morrison on the lakers

    not agreeing with what avery said either, far from it

  • http://psp2423@yahoo.com Eboy

    If you ask the other NBA players on the other teams in the tree peat years they would all say Kobe was the differnce maker in those games BOOK IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    p.s. still think KOBE ball hogs for the final shots in clutch moments

  • dmoore

    he’s just saying this hoping kobe will take it easy on his team

  • kotw

    Actually kobe is better than Jordan if you look at the competition they faced. Back in Jordans prime nobody was close to him look at all these jordan type players now that KB24 has to deal with plus the mamba was forced into second banana status with shaq that’s what hurt his career averages. If mj came into the league with the same circumstaces as Kobe he wouldve played 2nd to shaq too. The bulls were mj team from day 1. All these facts make Kobe more impressive not to metion those 2 mvp awards Steve Nash won are really Kobes. Nash is a great offensive player but never was really league mvp

  • kotw

    Why do people act like mj won titles without any help fe: scottie rodman kerr toni ku horace grant etc

  • Blackphantom

    No, they aren’t on par. Kobe is will be a top-10 all-time player when his career is over but no he is NOT on par with MJ

  • Blackphantom

    forgive my typo

  • Blackphantom

    @nbk, ……..You saying Scottie Pippen wasn’t an All-Star?

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    Avery just talking him up before they play, he’s been on a court with MJ, he knows the real

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  • http://nicekicks.com Meloman2.0

    u cant say “those two mvp’s nash won were really kobe’s” because A) Nash beat out shaq for the first one, not kobe, and B) they’re literally NOT Kobe’s, they belong to nash. You cant claim something that isn’t yours

  • http://www.twitter.com/TheDiesel Anton

    This year’s Nets are on par with last year’s Nets.

  • vtrobot

    show me someone who isn’t a laker fan who agrees that kobe is as good as MJ was.

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    When the Mavs start playing ‘Kobe Rules’ in the WFC then we can start this talk again….but for now? MJ = GOAT

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    @Anton – This years Clippers are on par with last years Nets.

  • Kelly

    I agree with kotw post. Michael did not face the competition back then that Kobe faced. I would venture to say that no one would deny that the NBA players today (as a whole)has more athleticism, more speed,& more creativity. During his day, Michael was ‘ahead of his time’; but with today’s players, he wouldn’t stand out as much. We have players today that’s not even ‘superstars’ that’s making moves on the court that Michael use to make. Michael had a few ‘creative’ dunks, but most of them was just ‘very high and come down strong’. I can not argue the stats; but even if Michael’s stats are superior to Kobe’s, Michael’s performance can’t touch Kobe’s performance when Kobe brings his ‘A’ game. People say Kobe wouldn’t have won without Shag. If you watched those 3 championships, you would also have to say that Shag would not have won them without Kobe. Even when Shag won one without Kobe, he had to have another ‘kobe type’ player in DWade. Please don’t try to say the championships Kobe won without Shag was won with a “Shag type” player because you know as well as I do that Pau cannot be compared to Shaq. It’s sad that people have to have a “love-hate” feeling. It’s like you can’t love Michael without hating on Kobe. Probably most of the people that don’t like Kobe, it’s not because of his game or his performance on the court, it seem to be personal. One person said it perfectly in an article entitled “The Art of Hating Kobe”. He/she hit the nail right on the head with that article and my hat is off to that person.

  • Hammer

    I wouldn’t go as far 2 say that kb8 is on par or parallel 2 his airness,but if any player comes close 2 reminding us of mj,its kobe. Don’t get me wrong tho. Kobe will never b better then mj. MJ is the goat. But a lot of similarities n their games. The post-up,the fadeway,the d,the killer instinct,clutch shooting,the game winners. Mj 6 titles,kb8 5. Very similar. Those who think kb8 is better r deliusional

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  • Spetsnaz

    @kotw – Its not like scottie was getting 40 & 20 like shaq used to. For example in jordan’s last championship Scotties back was fried and rodman did close to nothing and came off the bench. And that finals series against the Suns, MJ averaged 41 a game!!!!!

  • VB324

    MJ is the best ever no question. Numbers dont lie. why do people say he didnt face good competition? Celtics w/Bird? Lakers w/Magic? Bad Boy Pistons? Ewings Knicks? Millers Pacers? Clyde Drexlers Blazers? Sir Charles? He beat all the best teams and players in his era. Kobe’s 5 arent even better than Duncan’s 4. Duncan never had the talent Kobe had until maybe 05′/07′ when Manu and Parker really came into their own.

  • VB324

    And lastly, Scottie was Lamar Odom with defense…real tlak

  • Lloyd

    But there lies Jordan’s greatness. He WAS ahead of his time. What he did on the court is the REASON kids these days are doing what they’re doing. He brought the game to all these children, making them want to emulate his abilities. They grew up watching what he did and his moves were practiced over and over on driveways and gym floors everywhere.

    Pau Gasol is still one of the best centers in the league, if not THE best. Obviously he’s not as dominant as Shaq was physically, but he has other means of dominance i.e. offensively clutch and SOUND fundamentals.

    You’re speculating that Kobe hate is a personal thing. I’d say it more from a position of MJ fans being offended that Kobe is being compared to their hero and the ensuing backlash of that.

    @ all those people saying that Avery Johnson has the credibility to make this call

    Phil Jackson has the utmost credibility to make this call, and everytime he’s asked about the comparison, he’ll praise Kobe but then end off by saying Jordan had small things that made him better than Kobe. Compared to Phil, who the hell is Avery Johnson?

  • ai come back

    uhm i think averys jus trying to make upfor the fact that he lost ……..

  • Hammer

    I’m laughin @ kelly and kotw. They truly r idiots. Probably only saw mj as a wizard. Probably still believe n santa claus 2. As well as any1 sayin that mj n 2days game “wouldn’t stand out”. Mj faced the most fiercest,physical competition. Kb8 has it easier 2day w/the elimination of the hand check rule

  • Hammer

    If kelly could enlighten me,who is the “competition” that mj couldn’t keep up w/2day? Who? Name a few if u can. I’ll wait

  • Hammer

    @vb324. I don’t recall lamar carryin a team deep n2 the 2nd round and being a bad call away from reaching the finals on his own. I don’t recall lamar ever being an all-star mvp. I don’t recall lamar being the best player n the L the yr 1 yr 1/2 that mj was gone. Do u? Cuz I certainly don’t. Pip was much,much,much more than just a “lamar odom w/defense”. And that’s “real talk”

  • Joe

    I agree with Avery.

    I saw both Jordan and Kobe play.

    1a, 1b.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    so i’m assuming every single person that questioned what i wrote doesn’t know the difference between playoff round and championship…

  • ryan

    How many championships or playoff games did Michael Jordan win without Scottie Pippen? What about Scottie and Dennis Rodman.

    If you’re diminishing Kobe Bryant because he played with the world’s largest child early on then at the same time you’ve got to recognize Jordan played with two of the NBA’s most versatile and relentless defenders and that they carried a massive part of the load.

    And considering the bigger picture, please remember Michael Jordan is ONE of the greatest of all time, not the greatest of all time. This means we need to consider if either Jordan or Bryant has what Oscar Robertson had, we need to wonder if we wouldn’t be better of starting a team with Bill Russell, we shouldn’t forget that while Isiah Thomas seems nuttier by the year he can make a great case for being the best ever pound for pound.


  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Kobe Bryant not only has never won a PLAYOFF SERIES without another All Star, he hasn’t won a playoff series without a top 10 big man. Its only about a 4 year window but that was in the peak of his abilities and he didn’t amount to anymore then Tracy McGrady…..food for thought

  • http://www.need4sheed.com Tarzan Cooper


  • ryan

    People need to listen to Hammer. Lamar Odom brings a lot to the court but he ain’t Scottie Pippen.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan went for 37 7 7 without scottie and made it to the eastern conference finals.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan was a defensive player of the year

  • monkeyball

    Kelly Posted: Dec.12 at 6:28 pm
    “Michael’s performance can’t touch Kobe’s performance when Kobe brings his ‘A’ game”

    I can not believe you said that. Kobe’s ‘A’ game is remarkable, I’ll give him tht but have you ever heard the flu game? MJ was incredible even when he didn’t have his ‘A’ game.

  • ASH

    Nice Try Avery.

  • Hammer

    @ryan. Thanx 4 concuring w/me. I didn’t even get around 2 mentioning that pip led a jordan-less bulls team to a 55-27 record the 1st year w/out him. Not only that,but he led the bulls n points,steals,assists and mins played. I’m not tryin 2 diminish lamar here. Lamar,as u said,brings a lot 2 the court. But not like pip did. Not even close. I don’t know who on this thread said that n every mj/kobe debate,sum1 always belittles pip. Well,that person was right thanx 2 vb324

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Everybody who was asking in the last Kobe post name an NBA analyst who states Kobe is just as great as MJ HERE IT IS. There are more, but Slam will be coming out with their articles like Avery in the future. AND PEOPLE, stop acting like MJ was so great defensively. Scottie held the position on the BULLS and KOBE held that position on the Lakers with Shaq. How many players were a bench player with the number one player in the NBA, Coach wouldn’t play him. Kobe forced Eddie out to be a player on the team, Hit winning shots. The Spurs HOF coach always stated he was the reason they would beat the Spurs. Kobe won the series against the Kings/Blazer during there years. Shaq would always beast against the LEAST centers to get MVP. I could put up numbers to show yall Kobe did his thing with Shaq, imagine if from DAY ONE like MJ he got his won team like LEBRON. ALso MJ was great, but he did have horrible shooting nights and horrible defensive nights. If people act like he didn’t yall didn’t watch every NBA bulls games. Its cool be a HOMER, but at least know that Kobe can do everything MJ could do on the court and folks saying MJ was so much greater defensively. Magic in 91 would state that he was overrated when Scottie had to switch on him. I loved MJ as a player, but Kobe has done it too against better talent. So Avery statement is on par. BOOK IT!!!

  • Hammer

    @ kelly. STILL waitin on ur response,just so u know

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    @Kotw shut the hell up boy, No competition? every team jordan faced in the finals were better than every team kobe faced except the celtics who beat him and the pistons who beat him. If K.G played last year how he’s playing now(because his knee is fully healthy)the celtics would of beat them.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Phil Jackson compares Jordan and Kobe (2008)

    COPY LINK to address bar: Please people watch video and listen to this interview on youtube about Phil comparing Kobe and MJ. Phil makes a statement that some of yall will not believe. It goes something like this. I agree with the statement that Kobe has better basketball skills than Micheal Jordan. NO LIE– and PLEASE BOOK IT!!!

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan shot a higher %, averaged more points (5 more), more assits, more rebounds, more steals, more blocks, less turnovers, and if your argument is that Michael played more minutes then look at per 36, he still averages better numbers in every single category. Bryant has a better FT% (.838 to .835) on less attempts (7.5 to 7.7) and shot a higher 3pt % (.327 – .339). Jordan also won 6 MVP awards in a league that was not structured for perimeter player success like it is now. Which is the most underrated aspect of all of this. Jordan’s numbers in todays game would be considerably higher. Success wise its pretty clear Michael had more of an effect. (Scottie did lead chicago to 57 wins, but then Michael came back and they won 72, Kobe had Shaq, maxed out at 65 i believe, then when shaq left he struggled to make the playoffs…and shaq won a title) Kobe is a top 10 all time player, but too put him in the top 5 is a stretch, let alone putting him on par with michael jordan.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Kobe Bryant is the Michael Jordan of this era. There, that settles it.

  • http://gmail.com z

    I’m only 21 so lemme start by admitting that I never got 2 see mike in his prime.for me Kobe is pretty much THAT guy but I’m smart enough to understand that just BC he’s the greatest I’ve ever seen doesn’t mean He’s the goat.with that said, all of you jordanophiles &idolaters need 2 stfu BC unless you’re about 80 years old you never saw big o in his prime or Baylor in his prime or above all chamberlain AVERAGE 50 ppg. So YOU have no real frame of reference to say mikes the goat. Maybe someone who had the chance to see all of em. This is the ONE thing where I agree with jtaylor. Respect your predecessors.

  • Jay Reyes

    when Avery said that he sees MJ in Kobe, he’s pointing it out in two very good points of view since he played against both… during MJ’s greatness and Kobe was still budding up as a great player…

    he has seen them both during his stint as player and now he’s seeing Kobe in a coach’s perspective… many MJ fans would be irked by this statement but I for one (34-year old guy who saw MJ play during my high school days) believe that this is certainly a welcome statement…

    my point? MJ has already passed the torch to Kobe… and maybe Kobe would pass it to LBJ… from one generation to another…

  • The Philosopher

    I guess my brethren has to refer ONCE AGAIN to eboy’s legendary literary piece on Jordan.
    - Please refer to the post “Can Kobe Age As Gracefully As Jordan?” thread.

  • logues

    nbk’s last comment says it all

  • ron

    MJ is great, KB is great too.
    They’re talented and dedicated much to the game. Who’s no.l or 2? Who cares?
    Love and respect both of their games.

  • Michael

    Avery tryin to get zenlike?

  • Bill Simmons

    Damn. The way these “fanboys” speak of Michael Jordan you would think he never missed a shot in his life, never lost a game in his life, and never even dropped a smelly deuce…in his life. Sad.

  • VB324

    @Hammer Scottie is a product of what Jordan made him. He was soft when he came into the league and we all see what happened to Scottie after he left the Bulls, right? Went to Houston to win a ship and couldn’t do it. And don’t even say he was old because Jordan carried them to the finals the year before. I’m not saying Scottie wasn’t nice, Lamar Odom is damn good. He just isn’t as good as people make him out to be. Pippen was good at everything, but not necessarily great at anything.

  • robb

    I confirm Tarzan Cooper’s comment.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    @Z stfu boy Mike is the greatest, name one player who had the numbers, efficiency,dominance, style, substance,wit, killer mentality, wins and Rings.And vb324 dont you ever compare Jekyll & Hyde Odom to Pippen.

  • Mo Money

    Kobe is the best 2 in the L right now, and resembles MJ the most out of anyone. But to say he’s better…is straight up stupid. the mvps, defensive player of the year, the clutch, the shooting percentage…it goes on and on…nobody playing the game comes near that. and btw…the first 3 championships were courtesy of Shaq. nobody alive could stop shaq back then…

    as far as pippen vs. odom…im not even going to give that argument the time of day, all im gonna say is this: Pippen was the best player in the league, but second best on his own team.

  • ektor

    Kobe who? Michael What? T-Mac GOAT !!

  • http://jayemmbee23.tumblr.com Clutch Performer

    MJ is often imitated never duplicated
    Kobe is just the bootleg version of MJ, its good, just not quite the same
    besides the numbers dont lie and they tip the scale in MJs favor
    besides like in a video by Rick Kamla on NBA he said how can Kobe be the greatest ever when he wasnt even the best on his team on those championship teams?
    when it comes to late options in a game you had a choice of shaq or kobe, for the Bulls its MJ
    besides that Defensive player award alone gives one of many reasons why MJ>Kobe

  • Hammer

    @vb324. Wow! Really? Pip not gr8 @ anything? U kiddin me right? U tellin me his d was what? Mediocre? I’m guessin u never saw pip as a bull or r just a hater. I’ve seen pip harass magic,the glove,stockton.mark jackson,penny. The list goes on man. Another belittling statement 2 pip by u. Every tru b-ball fan knows that pip was 1 of the gr8est,if not the gr8est defender ever. Ur just embarassing urself on this thread

  • Jackie Moon

    Avery later added, “Even though I’ve played with both and coached against Kobe IN PERSON, I’ve more inclined to believe a bunch of SLAM commenters who swear MJ would destroy Kobe.”

  • robz

    kobe is kobe…MJ woaahh hes d man times 2 of kobe

  • JTaylor21

    Who determines who gets to be the GOAT? Jordan lovers just love to throw out his numbers and accolades and proclaim him the out-right GOAT off the head without giving thought to guys like Kareem, Russell, Oscar, Magic, Hakeem, and Zeke. Don’t those guys desereve the same kind of respect and love MJ gets from the basketball world? That’s why it’s impossible in my opinion to figure out who’s the clear cut goat because there are about 5-6 guys who have every right to that title. Just because the man sold countless shoes and appeared in many commercials and every moron on TV claims he’s the GOAT doesn’t mean he is. Respect what other greats did and stop worshipping a false idol.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    This is about who’s better between Jordan and Bryant. Who didn’t play very far apart generation wise, played the same position, in the same offense, with the same general style and approach. Those two are a perfectly fine comparison. As long as you realize its not really very close in terms of efficiency and consistency. Skill wise probably, maybe even more so in Kobe’s favor, but Michael used what he had better, more often, and more efficienctly.

  • Blackphantom

    Y’all forgive some of my fellow Kobe fans, Kobe is probably Top 10 All-Time but no he is not the GOAT first of all, second of all, the competition back then was waaaay tougher. Want proof? Look up the bad boys pistons, one of the dirtiest, nastiest, greatest defensive teams ever that MJ eventually conquered, I know a great bit, for as long as I’ve watched Kobe and the rest of LA(since 2000 when i was 5-6 years old) I don’t remember him playing a team that got under your skin like the Bad Boys Pistons.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/32JSE Yesse

    Well, kissing somebodys ass doesn’t make you win the game, Avery. Kobe is one of the best players in the history of the Nba, but not near MJ.

  • Blackphantom

    Co-sign Yesse

  • Justin

    JTaylor, for the love of God can you PLEASE stop putting Isiah Thomas in the talk of GOAT?!!? He is nowhere close. He isn’t even top 5 point guards in the last 30 years. OK, MAYBE top 5 but not all time. Yes, us Jordan lovers like to throw out the numbers but that’s only part of the argument. I really do hate when articles like this are put out because it’s like Groundhog Day with the arguments. Same with Kobe vs. Lebron. Michael is the best, pure and simple. The only thing Kobe might have an edge on MJ is range and handle, and who really cares about that? I’m also saying this as a guy who loves to watch Kobe play, not just as an MJ fanatic. When Kobe admits that someone is/was better than him, as he has in MULTIPLE interviews, then I think we can pretty much say argument over.

  • Blackphantom

    …….JTaylor put Isiah in the GOAT discussion? Are you freakin kidding me?
    C’mon now

  • http://masterx1983@hotmail.com marchalmadness

    hahahahaaaa comparing bryant to jordan…
    thats a joke

  • JTaylor21

    Alright then give me one argument for why Zeke doesn’t belong in the convo? He’s the best PG of all-time in my opinion, the best little man of all-time, he led a team to two straight chips in an era dominated by the two best teams of all-time (Det would have won 3 in a row if he didn’t get hurt in 88 gm7 vs LA) and he beat MJ/Bird/Magic all in their prime. That sounds like a player who deserves to be included in every GOAT convo to me.

  • Kadavour

    nbk @ 3:46am, GREAT comment. Honestly, Kobe’s has superior skill, Jordan superior athletic talent, specifically his “billion dollar hands”. Baylor and West were among the first to tinker with turnaround jumpers, Jordan improved it, and it only follows that his skills would be improved upon too. Baylor and West at THEIR best cannot ball in today’s league, and that’s what makes it difficult to compare athletes across eras. The sport evolves with its athletes. It irks me when ppl conjure Bill Russell’s name in these debates like he had enough skills crack a d-league roster today. He was a pioneer and arguably the greatest of his time, but Wilt is the only one from back then who could run with these boys today (remarkable athlete). And even so, his right hand dominated offensive arsenal likely wouldn’t be enough to be elite.

  • JTaylor21

    ^Wow, did you just say that Russell couldn’t crack a d-league roster if he was playing today? Damn, I can finally die in peace because I just read the stupidest comment ever.

  • Kadavour

    i know the comment seems incendiary and otherwise ridiculous, but that’s only if you refuse to acknowledge the evolution of athletics in the 50+ years since Bill played.

  • Kadavour

    i read somewhere that Bill ran the 400 in about 49 seconds, which should count for something in comparing him against today’s athletes, but when you consider his size, his offensive abilities, and today’s centers and PF, i just don’t see it.

  • http://www.nba.com Gman

    LOL I wish Jordan had a team like the Lakers this year and last. Man that would be insane…. regular season record would be like 80-2


    Kobe Bryant is Rite Aid brand Michael Jordan.

  • Vince5

    I’m pretty sure he wasn’t talking about the same Jordan. What he said is ridiculous otherwise.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @nbk: Jordan never won a playoff series without Scottie (although Scottie did win a playoff a few playoff series without Jordan). The year Jordan put up “37, 7 and 7″ Pip put up 20, 7 and 6.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    Fact: For their careers Kobe has averaged 1.3065 points per field goal attempt. MJ averaged 1.3160. Every one acts like Jordan shooting at a higher FG% is such an important factor in him being better than Kobe. Well, when you look at their complete numbers it is a fact that they scored with the same efficiency. I am not saying Kobe is better than Jordan. Just trying to point out that arguments can be made either way and some are not very valid.

  • JTaylor21

    ^Uhm NO, they do not score with the same efficiency. MJ was by far the more efficient player and it’s not even close. When one player shoots 50% from the field for his entire career and the other is barely above 45% there’s a humongous difference between the two. Get your facts right and stop trying to convince people that kobe belongs on MJ’s floor.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @JTaylor: I never said Jordan didnt shoot at a higher percentage. MJ had the better numbers in that one statistic. I’m not talking about that at all. But, in terms of total points per total field goal attempt they have just a .0095 difference. That is also a fact. That is where you take how many total points a guy scored (FTs and FGs) and divided by the total amount of FGs they attempted. To me this is the most true measure of efficency because it accounts for all scoring. Am I wrong? Please, tell me how two players that have almost the same exact points per shot average are so significantly different in efficiency. Honestly if you can explain that to me, I’d be very interested.

  • Hammer

    Isiah as a goat? Pleez! He didn’t beat mj n his prime. Matter of fact,he didn’t even beat pip n his prime. All the pistons had 2 do was harass and d up on the rest of the bulls and c if mj could beat them on his own. Simple as that since pip was just barely learning the ropes back then. So isiah won 2 titles. And? Hakeem won 2 as well and no1 mentions him as a goat candidate. S**t kobe’s “got 5 on it” and no1 n their right mind sayin he’s the goat. Isiah was gr8. No doubt. But certainly should not b included n the goat convo

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    Also, I love how I say that “Every one acts like Jordan shooting at a higher FG% is such an important factor in him being better than Kobe. Well, when you look at their complete numbers it is a fact that they scored with the same efficiency” and your comeback is that MJ had a higher FG percentage. No duh. But, there is more to efficiency that that. Also, let’s not forget that Kobe has higher percentages from the FT line and behind the Arc. Again, Jordan is the GOAT hands down. But, Kobe’s greatness does not need to be belittled because of it.

  • Drew

    You know everyone refutes this claim based on statistics. However, all these old timers actually played with or against both of them and all they’re saying is that their game is similar in the way they compete and play the game. No one’s blind and stupid enough to say Kobe “statistically” is on par with Jordan. That would be BS.

  • Jackie Moon

    @jumpman3224 Don’t waste too much of your energy on jtaylor21 – he sees that one number is bigger than the other and makes conclusions with no thoughtful analysis. What you are doing makes a ton of sense. Instead of using eFG% or true shooting percentage% to account for threes and free throws in addition to two pointers, you are saying, “how many shots did a guy take in a game, and how many points did he score from them?”. It doesn’t tell you much about what happened when he didn’t shoot, but if you’re talking about efficiency with your FG attempts, that’s the stat right there. Thanks for sharing the numbers.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan scored more points on a higher %. and shot more free throws, there is not one logical measure in the world that would say they are equally efficient. Their difference in % at the FT line and 3pt line is not enough to make up for the massive (5% on that many attempts is massive) difference in FG%. Plus the fact that Jordan was better then Kobe at EVERY SINGLE ASPECT OF BASKETBALL other then shooting.- and my fault, Scotties Rookie year when he averaged 7PPG in 20Minutes michael made it to the Eastern Conference Semi’s. ANd scottie definately was not elite at that point.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @nbk: 1. I’m sorry but the difference of 5% in FG is not very significant. For their careers, Kobe has shot .454 and MJ has shot .497. That means out of every 1,000 shots Jordan made 43 more than Kobe. So out of every 100, he made 4.3 more than Kobe. Which means that out of every 25 shots, Jordan made 1.075 more than Kobe. In a given game if player A takes 25 shots and makes 1 more than player B who also takes 25, no one in their right mind would say that player A was significantly more efficient. So don’t ignore points per FGA and tell me that due to a higher FG% Jordan was that much more efficient. 2. To say that Jordan is better at every single aspect of basketball than Jordan is ingnorant and subjective.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224


  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    Points per FG attempt would be a good measure, if you looked at it for their primes. The numbers are skewed some by Jordan’s 2 years in washington and 41 and 44% (two career lows, 94-95 is a 30 game season, having little to no effect, regardless it doesn’t help his career numbers) fg percentage. And if you want a full article that outlines how this isn’t even really debatable just click my name.

  • Jackie Moon

    “This isn’t even really debatable” … in other words, let’s listen to nbk instead giving some credibility to Avery Johnson’s opinion.

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    michael jordan’s CAREER fg% is 3% higher then kobe bryant’s BEST season. And since we all like to compare people by rings, compare their playoff numbers to make this even more obvious

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    Avery Johnson would also tell you he can shoot. He also never coached again Jordan, and never had to play michael more then twice a year. plus his opinion will be biased, considering he had first hand experience of Kobe during the playoffs, and never was in the same building as michael during the same period. his opinion dictates nothing more then portaying his thoughts to the world. that’s like saying you trust stephon marbury that he would get 10 assists and 7 or 8 dimes in the same game because he wore an nba jersey, so his level of intelligence is immediately higher then everyone else.

  • VB324

    @Hammer…i thought i said he had Defense? my bad..but that still just makes him L.O. with great defense

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @nbk: Without the Washington years, Jordans points per FGA is 1.35. Still not significantly higher than Kobe’s career 1.3065. I’m not saying Kobe is better, just that some of the arguments both ways lack much weight.

  • Jackie Moon

    Yes, but then you’d also be ignoring the opinions of Steve Kerr, B.J. Armstrong who played with MJ, and many other people with first hand experience who have been on the record as saying Kobe’s up there with MJ. Scottie Piipen would tell you differently. But that only serves the point, Kobe v MJ is very debatable, and is close enough to be debatable. This is not “no contest”.

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    shooting is one aspect of basketball jumpman. If michael is scoring more points every shot, rebounding more, getting more assists, steals, blocks, over a more sustained period of time, in a league that had less rules enabling perimeter dominance then wouldn’t it be 100% logical to say there is nothing to even debate about? unless there is one single thing in either players career that would even hint that bryant is the better basketball player….(you can look for something, but it’s a waste of time, you won’t find a thing)

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    oh and lets not forget the most important thing, michael has a better winning %. and too top it off, has been the best player on every single team he has ever played on. In order for Kobe to match Michael in terms of playoff greatness he will need to win 4 more titles, and get finals MVP in every single one. While averaging over 30 – and never being taken to 7 games.

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    and let me add for the second straight year, Kobe costs LA games, and is not even the clear cut best player on his team. It is actually a better argument then this one, did Kobe even deserve Finals MVP last season? Because IMO he didn’t, unless you award a player for performing in losses.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @nbk: First off, I never said Kobe was better. So don’t put words in my mouth or incinuate that I said anything different. You pointed out that shooting is only one aspect of the game. Well, no duh. This all started out because I was talking about scoring efficency and just that. Second, let’s not lie stats are relative. Certainly important, but any can be debated. For example, Jordan averaged more rebounds but he played the majority of his career without a dominate rebounder so does that really make him a better rebounder? Also, the Lakers during Kobe’s 14 years have a higher winning percentage than Jordan’s Bulls and Wizards. So, the winning percentage is an outright lie. Also, I’d like to point out that Kobe has been named all-nba and all-defense more times than MJ and been in the finals more. So yes, there is some merit to such a debate. Finally, yes Kobe has been the best players on the Lakers for the last two seasons. Don’t fool yourself. Everyone seems to forget that most analysts had Kobe as the MVP of that series going into game 7 win or llose. Yeah maybe Kobe got some numbers in losses, but Gasol was bad in a couple of the wins (Game 3 – 13 and 10 on 45.5% and Game 6 – 17 points on 43%).

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    Jordan played his career with Charles Oakley – dominant rebounder, Horace Grant – Dominant Rebounder, Dennis Rodman – Most Dominant Rebounder ever. – The winning % I was referring to was in the playoffs, i don’t give a damn winning % in the regular season, homecourt is all that matters from there.
    Jordan = 10 All-NBA First Team Selections, nine First Team All-Defensive selections, and one Second Team All-NBA selection
    Bryant = 8 time All-NBA First Team selection, eight time All-NBA Defensive First Team, two time All-NBA Defensive Second Team, two time All-NBA Second Team, and two time All-NBA third team member. And Kobe Bryant’s career started 4 years earlier then Michael Jordans. oh and Jordan took a year off, during the peak of his abilities.

  • http://stapledesign.com Spaceship Jay

    I agree with the Avery being way more qualified than any and all of us. Regardless of who you really are Philo, Avery still has you by a… coaching/player career.

  • http://bleacherreport.com/articles/408237-bryant-vs-jordan-theres-still-no-debate-jordan-is-king nbk

    lets add in that Jordan has the highest PER in NBA history. – and that Bryant hasn’t led the league in that (most widely used and respected statistic for measuring a player effectiveness) stat EVER. His career high 28PER was topped by Jordan 7 times. Lets also add in the MJ is #1 all time in win shares per 48 minutes, while Bryant comes in at 28th.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    I said majority. I’ll certainly conceed Rodman was a dominant rebounder and Oakley was a top notch one. But combined Jordan only played 6 out of 14 seasons with those guys. HoGrant was never a dominant rebounder. Not in the way that Shaq or Gasol are. Also, I dont see why it matters that Kobe career started four years earlier than MJ’s? Going into this year they’ve played the same number of total seasons. Anyways, I’m done with this very debatable topic for the day, enjoy your evening.

  • Hammer

    @vb324. Well it’s obvious that common sense doesn’t get thru 2 u. I’m out like odoms chances of being a hofamer. I’m pretty sure pip is 1 by the way

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    Kobe has more years as a younger player. A longer physical prime. And Horace averaged the same number of rebounds as gasol (who’s only been with Kobe 3 years) It’s redundant either way, Jordan was better in every effective part of the game aside from shooting and the difference there was more then made up for by jordans relentless attacking of the rim while shooting a higher % and shooting more free throw attempts thus it’s not debatable who’s better.

  • http://www.slamonline.com jumpman3224

    @NBK: Again, you act like I said that Kobe was better. I’ve been consisten in saying that Jordan was the GOAT. However, let’s not take away from Kobe’s greatness just because to this point his career isnt as accomplished as MJ. I have yet to offer any opinion on the comparison other than they score with nearly the same efficiency. If the topic is not debatable, feel free to exit the forum. Why waste your time right?

  • Jackie Moon

    It is debatable.

  • http://Slamonline.com Nbk

    I never said you did, and the topic is what it is, who is better out of the two however is not debatable. Kobe can be called close, it can be debated if he ever could = Jordan. But better? Nope not debatable

  • http://slamonline.com Spaceship Jay

    Jordan was much more marketable than Kobe is.

  • The Philosopher

    Agreed, but I was just pointing out a contradiction and a double standard on James’ part.

  • BostonBaller

    Kobe is legit but MJ is well MJ.. to say Kobe’s competition is greater than MJ’s is a bit misguided. Those bad boys were pretty tough, The Celtics original Big 3 not to mention the other Eastern conf teams that were pretty good…then he had to beat on Magic and a host of Western teams that were also legit. Not many of todays “stars” would have lasted against Those Pistons teams that put a body and bat on players. lol. WZUP Philosopher..

  • The Philosopher

    Shout out @The BostonBaller.
    Really good to see you up here, my brother.

  • BostonBaller

    Hey hey my friend..It’s been a while but I couldn’t resist messing with this one. lol. Have a great holiday SLAM Nation!!

  • tony

    Boston Baller Posted Dec 13: I say this to everyone. Jordan wasn’t winning titles against the Boston Big Three or the Show Time Lakers. He started winning when all three of those teams Detroit, Boston and L.A. players started retiring. Lakers lost to Chicago without Kareem. Jordan beat the Lakers without Kareem, and don’t forget Byron Scott and Magic pulled hamstrings in that final, Byron was out the rest of the series, Magic limped through the losses. KOBE is easily confronted with more athletic players and more obstacles to over-come, because the media and folks like on these blogs, hate on his accomplishments. Jordan is
    Greater because of his accomplishments. Kobe is the best because of skill, talent and hard work. His accomplishments are piling up also and he’s done several things Jordan hasn’t, as Jordan has done things Kobe hasn’t. Try to be neutral and view their individual Greatness without becoming histarical wrecks and commenting out of anger and hate. Sorry Jordan, time to move over. Especially after Kobe breaks about 10 more records, wins two more titles and ends up the All-Time leading scorer through longevity!!! 81 pts more impressive than Wilts 100 against no defense what so ever. Watch Kobes highlights, and he’s doing things Jordan didn’t. P.S. Vince Carter is the best in Game Dunker Ever, but Kobe is the best in Game Highlight Reel I’ve ever seen. Jordan is second, and has less clutch shots than KOBE also. Over and Out—

  • Justin

    NBK, let’s not pretend Charles Oakley was a dominant rebounder in his years with the Bulls. It wasn’t until he went to New York that he started to become a great rebounder and defensive power forward. I agree with pretty much everything else you’ve said so far though. Kobe has a better regular season winning percentage because he was on much better teams early in his career. Kobe, early in his career played with Shaquille O’Neal. The next best player Jordan played with early on was Orlando Woolridge. Decent scorer and athlete but by no means a great player. @Tony…man, I don’t know where to go with you. I’ll correct you in one area though. Magic wasn’t hurt for the Finals against the Bulls. Byron Scott was but James Worthy was the other player injured and yes that was a significant loss for sure. I don’t think it changes the outcome of that series though. Which players has Kobe been confronted with that were so much better than what Jordan was? You may have forgotten that Chicago steamrolled the Pistons on their way to the Finals. That wasn’t an old team either. Maybe the Bulls and Lakers were on the decline but it’s not like the Lakers went through anybody that great. The first three teams the Bulls beat (Lakers, Blazers, and Suns) would have beaten the teams the Lakers beat in their first 3Peat. I mean come on. The Nets, Pacers, and Pistons? Maybe the Pistons give a good fight and maybe they beat one of those teams but not the Nets and Lakers. Individually, what has Kobe done that Michael hasn’t? I’m not even going to bother with the “Kobe is the best because of skill, talent and hard work.” It sounds like you’re saying Michael didn’t work hard and I hate to say it to you but Michael’s work ethic and intensity were legendary as well. If you think Kobe is the second best in game Highlight Reel, then you may want to log onto YouTube and sit back for a couple hours. You’re obviously not old enough to remember what MJ did throughout his career

  • Justin

    Sorry, meant to say “maybe the Celtics and Lakers were on the decline” not the Bulls

  • tony

    Continued: It’s easy for people to forget Jordan was hated his first 7 to 8 years and the sports columnist’s said he was a ball hog and only cared of scoring titles!!! Like I said JORDAN legacy will never be questioned because of the shoe line with Nike—Air Jordan’s. That’s all the kids know and knew back then. You could mix, Kobe, LeBron, Durant, Doc J, Dominique and Vince Carter, and make a player with unlimited everything and these SADISTIC Jordan fans will argue you down that he’s the greatest. Is he (f’n) some of you guys??? The man is not better than KOBE as a player: Who’s better? Shooting=Kobe, Ball Handling=Kobe, Free Throws=Kobe, High level of difficulty shots=Kobe, More clutch shots=Kobe, Played under scrutiny and scathing hatred for years and still won=KOBE, Work Ethic-Talent-skill set=Kobe, Use of left hand=Kobe, cross-over to step back=Kobe, Who’s slammed on every center in the NBA today in their damn face–I mean all of them to=Kobe, watch Kobe’s greatest slams/plays video’s and look at the skill and level of difficulty. Jordan used to primarily Jump higher, but had the big hands to allow easier control. KOBE had to do all the stuff with smaller hands which promotes more creativity. Vince is the best Dunker ever, which they also gave Jordan the title of; because nobody can be better than Jordan at doing anything, hear ya’ll haters say it. They robbed a slam dunk contest from Dominique because they couldn’t allow Jordan to lose at the all-star game and in Chicago. Give me a break—-KOBE shouldn’t be able to beat the younger beasts out there like LeBron, Durant, Wade, Anthony and the rest of them. But he is that much better and smarter than the others. Give him the 3 to 4 stolen MVP’s because they couldn’t promote him as the face of the NBA and you would have NASH with 0 and LeBron with maybe one, and that’s questionable. Hell the media is even trying to promote Gasol as the Laker MVP this year, but he started playing like, well Pau Gasol. Jordan took things to another level. KOBE has exceeded that level people, and what’s sick is fans say, he’s got to win two to three more titles, play 10 more years, win without Shaq, Beat the CEltics, Beat LeBron, He’s not the best Laker, he’s got to blah, blah, blah, blah. All he has to do is do the same thing he’s been doing and he’s surpassed JOrdaN already. Just finish his career and retire as KOBE. Jordan used Magic/Bird/Doc as standards and Kobe used Jordan. What ever the case, Kobe cleared that High Jump Bar Folks, Peace—–

  • tony

    @Justin: Don’t know you, but you can have your opinion just like me. Thing is I not only watched Jordan’s entire career, but went to his games court side for three years in Atlanta and two more in Chicago. There was no bigger Jordan Fan for a few years until I started seeing how much favoritism they showed Jordan. Heck you Couldn’t even look his way or they would blow the whistle. SIGNATURE JORDAN PLAY. Push the Guard from UTah 20 FEET away from him and hit the winning shot. THAT IS THE KIND OF FAVORITISM they showed Jordan throughout his career after he hooked up with NIKE.

  • tony

    @Justin: P.S. When Jordan started winning he faced a Lakers with kareem retired, two main players out of the series, Byron Scott, you may say Worthy, but Magic pulled a Hamstring in that series. Also, he got watered down Detroit/Boston and rudy poots in the finals. Utah/Seattle.

    I think we can all agree KOBE has faced much tougher competition. If nothing else just to get out of the stacked Western Conference.

    Justin: You name more competitive players than I’m listing here.

    LeBron, Wade, Durant, Duncan, Ginobili, Deron Williams, Brandon Roy, Tony Parker, Allen Iverson, Reggie Miller, T Mac, Vince Carter, Malone/Stockton, Nash/Stoudemire, Chris Webber’s Kings, Rudy Gay, Granger from Indiana, (Barkley,Pippen,Drexler, Olojuwon), Dirk/Mavericks, Shaq/Cleveland, Phoenix/Miami, Boston/Big 3, Dwight Howard/Magic, Nets/Kidd etc—may not have been great, but they won the East. To be truthful, I haven’t named about 15 athletic players because they couldn’t even make the playoffs. Just for jokes–Wall, Derrick Rose. You name me that many athletic or great players that Jordan went through. If you mention teams they played when Jordan won, Kobe faced them to. Jordan didn’t face these guys Kobe are going against every damn night though.

  • OvaChicken

    Don’t argue about this Kobes not even at MJs toes.

  • JL

    i like kobe and all, but he’s just not jordan. more like a poor man’s version of him. avery must be getting blurry vision in his old age. everything he does is less, only maybe practicing. from his shooting % to reb, assist, steals, blocks, etc etc he is worse. he is only about the same with FT%, and pace was about the same during jordan’s era and kobe’s era now. So stats can be compared pretty fairly except for rule changes. lebron’s stats compare closer to jordan’s, but he’s not the same kind of player when you watch them. but just stop comparing kobe to jordan please. give him the respect he deserves. jordan has been immortalized even and his stature will probably never be reached. unless it’s another guard who is like vince carter but with the right head screwed on. vince, kobe, and tmac pretty much share the same talent level, but only kobe had the drive. respect! and i do think players nowadays are probably more athletic than back then, with better training at an earlier age.

  • Kevin starz

    Stupid people all you cant say kobe is like mj in scoring and in his defence but all you just kobe haters probably cause he beat your team and he has more rings alone then your teams francise and plus just like kobe had oneal to win 3rings and 2 with gasol guess what jordan had one of the greatest all around players SCOOTIE PIPPEN why you think he won 6rings cause he had help of pippen even Jordan would tell you that idiots

  • Az


  • http://Slamonline.com Az

    I agree with you Justin people since to forgot mm moves a protege or dr j competition not at the best level lost 4times with Detroit score 63 but lose the game of course he change the game due to the media and marketing got Scottie pippin and dennids rodmand at the time considered the best at they position people the difference is Kobe beat you with out scoring don’t he showed you guys on the finals against boston the kid is simply smarter player

  • http://Slamonline.com Az

    Michael is the greates marketing player the ever played the game. You guys know it was nobody the play the game fast like today you got better teams more competition better players unlike on mj era the only competition he face it was at old detroit piston who beat them 4 years on at road Never beat Boston and Larry bird set the record for most points on playoff but also lose that game on his comeback from baseball lose 4 to 1 against the Orlando magic and shaq has to tell coach that he need Dennis rodmand to get back to finals no he is invincible he is has to play with good players to win so guys don’t get on Kobe and act like the kid is not good he is smarter player than Jordan by far