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Friday, August 24th, 2012 at 9:40 am  |  282 responses

Dwyane Wade: ‘I Don’t Know If LeBron Has the Ability to Surpass Michael Jordan’


by Eldon Khorshidi | @eldonadam

So, LeBron James is finally an NBA Champion. With the enormous monkey off James’ back, the conversation now shifts from “Will he ever get a ring?” to “How good is LeBron? How many rings will he win? What’s his ceiling…does he even have one?”

James is a flat-out monster on the court, on his worst day a top-2 player in the world. With his Olympic success this summer, he is now only the second player ever to win the NBA championship, NBA MVP trophy and a gold medal in the same calendar year, something only Michael Jordan can relate to. Not right now, but at some point in the distant future, there may be some other things that only LeBron and MJ can relate to. And, who knows, maybe one day there’ll be some accomplishments that only LeBron can relate to. When asked how James’ legacy stacks up against the G.O.A.T.’s, teammate Dwyane Wade said LeBron has a long way to go. Wade thinks LeBron could—maybe, just maybe—surpass Jordan, but believes LBJ has got his work cut out for him. And then some.

More details, via ESPN.com:

“Dwyane Wade isn’t ready to put Miami Heat teammate LeBron James in Michael Jordan’s category. Not yet anyway. ”I don’t know if (James) has the ability to surpass (Jordan) or not,” Wade told ESPNChicago.com on Thursday during a promotional event for his Wade’s World Foundation. “That’s yet to be seen. My version as LeBron being on par with Michael is this: They’re both on the golf course. Michael’s on the 18th hole. LeBron is somewhere on like the fourth hole. He’s got a long way to go, but he’s on par to get to the 18th hole. ”I think everyone knows that (James) is a phenomenal, phenomenal player. He’s one that we haven’t seen, with the makeup of a 6-8 guy who runs as fast as any point guard, jumps as high as any center, and has the ability that he has to do so many things. But Michael Jordan is the greatest player of all time, that’s who everyone shoots for. So it’s going to be hard to surpass that.” Wade, a Chicago native who told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel last week that James was “on that level” as it pertained to Jordan, played an instrumental role in James signing with the Heat two summers ago. James capped a remarkable year earlier this month with an Olympic gold medal for Team USA. Before that, he won his third league MVP, his first NBA championship and an NBA Finals MVP. “He’s now playing with that confidence, that swagger that you need, and he’s right in the smack of his prime. We’ve all seen it from all the best players in this game, all the future Hall of Famers, that age — 27, 28, 29 — that’s like the best years, and then after that if you stay healthy, then you have even more great years like a Michael Jordan, like a Kobe (Bryant) has had, when they reach their 30s.”

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  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    No less than 150 comments coming

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/media/slam-tv/2012/07/lakers-fans-give-steve-nash-a-beer-on-the-freeway/ vantot fresnedee

    im saying over 250. i see lakeshow hating and nbk slurpin…

  • kobe

    If lebron can stay injury free and simple move more down to the post as he ages he will have a “chance” to be on par. But the league overall is way more competitive than jordans time. With more multiple all-stars on teams than in jordans day. It will be hard be I think lebron finishes with 3-4 rings possibly 5. At the end of the day if lebron can get to that ring count he will be a top 5 player of all-time.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Why was this convo even started in the first place? Losing and underperforming in 2 Finals automatically disqualifies LeBron from ever being considered better than MJ.

  • Bravo

    I say LeBron will and he def can. But than again it’s MJ……….

  • kobe

    Ill go with 304 posts

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    Lebron has that potential! the real question is can D,wade fill that consistent scottie pippen role.

  • ALD

    we can’t just leave this topic alone.. smh

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    200+.
    Also, for the people who are just going to jump right into the comments without reading the story, Wade is not saying LeBron James CANNOT surpass MJ’s level. He is saying that it is POSSIBLE, and that he does not know what will happen in the future/if James can do it. (Which, really, none of us do know, so you can’t disagree with Wade here).
    Personally, as far as being able to dominate a game for extended periods of time on both ends of the court, at the same time, I feel James is right up there with Jordan.

  • ALD

    this is off topic but does anyone miss playing college basketball games?

  • MUBWAR

    god again? i read this on espn 2 days and I already saw a 400+ comments coming to slam

  • http://nba.com GP23

    Man, It could be done in a sense that LeBron could exceed the 6 rings and 5MVP’s…. but for some reason, that just doesn’t seem enough, you know?

  • MUBWAR

    he’ll exceed the 5 mvps but not the titles

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    But look, really, I think Jordan stands alone at the summit. Dude went to the NBA Finals 6 times. 6! And his team won every single Finals series. 6/6. Never had a Game 7 in the Finals. Won all series as ‘the man’.
    Kobe Bryant has been to the Finals 7 times. Lost twice. Only won 2 as ‘the man’.
    LeBron James has been 3 times. Lost twice. Won one as ‘the man’.
    Hakeem went 3 times. Lost once. Won two as ‘the man’.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    ALD, I’m with you on that but I think we have EA to blame for that, just like most of the sh*tty things that go in the gaming world.

  • Jake

    I think before anyone is allowed to have an opinion they need to watch the Ultimate Jordan Collection on dvd…then you can start comparing. Half of the comment givers here will not have seen MJ in his prime and thus cannot make a sound judgement.

    @ALD, yes I do…every day. Still trying to get on with a D league team.

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    JT: What ‘if’ he wins 5 more rings as the best player on his team? Then he’d have the same amount of chips as Mike with more career success in the playoffs. It’s unlikely, but it could happen. Either way, i think the argument against him catching or surpassing the goat will have more to do with defense,skill,and mindset.

  • ALD

    @Jtaylor what did EA do besides make a bad version? lol

    @Jake what do you mean?

  • http://www.fb.com Reedo

    before you guys go off picking at everything he said. Thats a safe comment by Wade, He’s LeBrons brother and Jordan is uuummmmm?? HIS BOSS! Everybody with a job knows you cant throw one of the men who writes your checks under the bus… It remains to be seen what LeBron can do we can just leave it at that and watch like all the other greats before him…

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Either way you look at it, I hope there’s some good solid discussion. Glad I can get in a few comments today.

  • http://Roosterteeth.com Caboose

    My guess is, when LeBron hangs em up, we’ll consider him like Wilt or Kareem. Most people will have him in the 2-5 range all time with two small minorities having him either outside the top 5 or at the #1.

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    i think lebrons defense is a tad overrated im not saying he’s not a solid defender, just that he’s not in the same class as MJ defensively.

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    I think LeBrons D’ is a tad over-rated. He’s a solid defender, just not in the same leauge as MJ imo.

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    Damn.

  • Jake

    I agree flea. He’s a decent defender but I think it’s more due to his size than anything. He’s built like a truck, so naturally he’s going to be able to do things most people can’t. The true test of LeBron will be when he starts losing some of that athleticism.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    I think we have all had our fill with leborn and mj comparisons so lets take it a step down

    D.wade Vs. Scottie Pippen

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Few players in history are/were in MJ’s class defensively. MJ’s at the top tier of all-time great defenders alongside GP/Pip/Russell/TD/Hakeem. LeBron is on a notch below that.
    ALD, EA had the exclusive rights to College Ball after 2K stopped making college games in 08. EA stopped after they couldn’t sell enough sh*tty games.

  • elmaar

    cosign jake. lebron is a great overall defender. he can defend 5 positions of most occassions, but not at the level mj could defend the 1,2,3 positions.
    on the other hand I disagree with that when he starts loosing his athleticism he shall be tested. I just think he will go back to guarding strictly his position and maybe some 4.
    As refers his status when all is said and done I think it is not even an argument he can be on par with MJ, I mean he is not 35 years old, still there are many IFs

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    Jake i hear you, but i think it’s more than a size thing. I agree He is athletic as hell and i think that’s what sparked his improvement on D’ the past few seasons starting with those run from behinds, but His off the ball D’ and post up skills have improved allot and he deserves credit for those skills. However, when it comes to skills, he’s light-years behind mike.

  • hugo

    he will never be considered as great, but he embodies a more complete/versatile game- in that sense he is better. Due to the evolution of the game this is normal. His impact on any given basketball game is on par with MJs.

  • http://www.fullc0urtpress.com KHOLIDAY

    @jake and @flea , You cant penalize Lebron for his physical gifts. I dont think his defense is overrated for the simple fact that you cant name 5 other ppl in the league that can guard both Derrick Rose and Pau Gasol effectively. As for D Wade’s answer, I thought he answered it perfectly. He kept it safe on both side, with Lebron being his teammate and friend and Jordan being his boss!

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    Naw, Bron is a couple notches below that list. With guys like Dennis johnson, Bowen, Dwight, the worm, mark Eaton,KG Heck he needs to improve career wise to be on par with guys like Artest, Battier and even mamba.

  • ALD

    @Jtaylor ea having the rights means that no other company can make a college game?

  • TheTwoTimer

    Will not surpass Jordan, but LeBron has a great chance to be at the top 5.

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    KHOLIDAY: re-read what i posted @10:31

  • James aka…

    I think Wade’s balanced approach to the issue should be emulated by partisans on both sides of the debate. He balanced everything and ended by saying we can’t say until it’s over, and thats a great answer both diplomatically as well as objectively.

    I would say that Lebron’s lows in the playoffs (disappearing in the two finals, as mentioned above) are a larger negative than Jordan’s ’95 comeback failure against Orlando, so that does make James’s ascent harder. Its like the old idea from boxing about needing to knock out the champ to win: I think Lebron’s career achievements would have to be clearly dominant over Jordan (maybe something as clear as at least one more of each major piece of hardware). In terms of individual impact on the court, we can measure their differences clearly, with stats and physical comparisons etc., but Lebron has just entered the meaty middle of his career. His stats hold up pretty well in every category to Jordan’s, he’s physically more imposing, but he’s also shown that he’s not as strong a competitor and not as able to impose his will. The real debate rests on achievement though at this point., and we aren’t fortune tellers.

  • Ctk

    Do y’all think Bron can finish with 20,000pts 10,000rebs 10,000dimes for his career

  • christianbullen

    flea.. you’re kidding. If your not than im telling you that you are.

  • Ctk

    John Starks,ReggieMiller,JoeDumars,CraigEhlo,SteveSmith,KendallGill,n a couple others …let not act like Mike was guarding better players than Bron have to deal with night in/night out

  • http://hoopsworld.com IamYOU

    Jordan in his PRIME vs. (present) Lebron James…. I don’t know yet but I would pick MJ as of now but we cannot be sure cause as wade said Lbj is still in that 4th hole and still going(you need to get more chips lebron james).. to give a fair shake to Lebron, He is the most athletic person that I’ve ever seen, but if were talking about skills, MJ is the king and the GOAT! And this is coming from a Lebron Super fan!

  • http://www.slamonline.com flea

    ctk don’t forget about some of the all time greatest point gaurds that Mike readily gaurded. Are you arguing that the talent level in the NBA is superior to that of mikes era?

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    ALD, semi-exclusive rights. 2K could jump in if they want but it’s gonna to cost them a boatload of money. With their success at the NBA level, I doubt they care about or need CB.
    Howard, Artest, Kobe and Battier (who has always been an overrated defender) are not higher on the defensive hierarchy than LeBron. I think’s LeBron’s athleticism and size fools people into thinking that he’s just a great off-the-ball defender when in reality his on-the-ball defense has been right up there with the likes of TAllen and Iggy the past few seasons. Opponents numbers against him and his team’s defensive rating with him on and off the floor back it up.

  • http://hoopsworld.com IamYOU

    He has a great chance to surpass mike why you hatin? Like for example I love iverson but I think a lot of pg’s right now are surpassing him but I think iverson is one of the best combo guard of all time. Same for MJ but it’s hard to say and accept because it’s MJ and he is the GOAT but Lebron still has a great CHANCE to surpass him. If bron can’t(surpass jordan) well tough luck but if he does surpass MJ well swallow the bitter pill.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Let’s just forget about great athletes that played during MJ’s era like Drexler, Cooper, Scott, Nance, Nique, Penny, Chambers, just to name a few that can outleap and outplay most cats today.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    troll – Pippen over Wade as the second option. Proven he can do it over the course of a career. Is eaaaasily the superior defender, and could guard more positions. Could do everything offensively too. Pippen is one of the top 50 greatest ever, I’m uncomfortable saying the same thing about Wade.

  • Ctk

    On the perimeter the talent is better now…top to bottom…won’t no great pgs n the east outside of Isiah Thomas …Knicks,Celtics,Hawks,Cleveland,n Pacers didn’t have no great pgs

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    If there’s any hesitation on D-Wade’s part to put LeBron on the same level as Jordan, it’s not only because he’s currently with Jordan Brand (apparently, his contract is up this summer and he may leave), or the fact that he is like an older brother to LeBron, it’s also because he idolized Jordan growing up.
    2K Sports has the basketball genre locked up. I don’t know why EA Sports is even considering releasing a game to compete with 2K. I haven’t played a college basketball game since 05.
    Also, has anyone read or heard about D-Wade being so close to joining the Bulls in 2010 that he went home and put on the jersey the team gave him to imagine what it would be like to play in his hometown? So close. What a backcourt that would have been in Chicago.

  • Rik Smits Mullet

    @jake
    instead of watching the ultimate jordan collection. watch some full games of mj in his prime on youtube. it gives a less skewed version of Jordan then the highlight real collection because he never misses in highlight reels. Also i think everyone seen every highlight in that jordan ultimate collection dvd box. its basically the same movie chopped up in different ways.

    Ontopic:
    As a Lebron fan now / and a mid 90s jordan fan iam hoping he can surpass Jordan. Why? because he has to do some ridiculous stuff that i am sure every basketball fan wants to see. even if you hate the guy.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    As for the Iverson comment from IamYOU, until a 5’10 160 pound combo guard scores at will, gets injured often but keeps playing, drags a bad team to the Finals, wins a game on the road in that Finals series against a dynasty headed by the most powerful player in the history of basketball and has his signature move banned by the league, I wouldn’t say that any combo guard is surpassing him.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    wade aint telling us something new. lebron james is close surpass kobe in his legacy to become the second best of all time behind jordan. but nobody in the nba today has what it takes to surpass jordan. whoever says something else didnt see jordan play

  • bike

    Wade is saying what I have been saying all along.
    LeBron has the potential to be the G.O.A.T.
    Key word: potential.
    That doesn’t mean it will happen. At the same point/age in their respective careers, they are about equal.
    Can’t understand why folks can’t see that.
    But there are many things I don’t understand.
    Continue.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    @cylinder, Celtics had Dennis Johnson (hof ), knicks had Mark Jackson (eventual hof), cave had Mark Price ( eventual hof), hawks had Mookie

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    If LeBron continues to master the Shock Exchange’s “LeBron Rules … The Keys to Stopping LeBron James,” he just might come close to MJ (1A) or Len Bias (1B)

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    *ctk *

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    *ctk*

  • the king

    people jordan is a human not a god there is always a greats or great players and they always get pass by someone the only people who dont respect that are the people who grow up watching them and dont let go jordan was the best in his time jim brown was then came walter payton ever one gets pass one day i no a 70 year olds that told me wilt was the best i no some old heads that like magic the most a kid that think kobes is the best the year the 76ers lost in the ship a kids told me ai was the best now the time has come get off jordans di(k i love him 2 i got some J’s on my feet i just bein real

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    Len Bias???? Wow.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    What does the PG position have to do with MJ?
    The SG position is the 80s/90s was superior to the SG position today. Don’t even get me started on the 3/4 spots or the guys that protected the rim against the MJs of the world.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Hursty Don’t forget about D-Wade’s performance in the 06 Finals. He’s almost as good of a defender as LeBron is. Look at his career averages. He consistently has a great FG percentage of around 49%, took that 09-10 Heat team to the playoffs with an old Jermaine O’Neal possibly as his best teammate (Beasley severely underachieved), and fought off a sweep at the hands of the eventual Eastern Conference champs in the 1st round. He’s easily top 50. In his best season two years before LeBron arrived, he led the league in scoring. Averaged 30, 8 and 5 on 49% shooting. All of this to say Dwyane Wade may be underrated especially since LeBron arrived.

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    Yes Lenny Bias … Closest thing to Jordan the Shock Exchange has ever seen. Put it in your diary WhiteMarkPrice.

  • Ldub

    Even if Lebron got 6 more rings. He still wont be “better” than MJ. The little things that Mike did changed the game. And honestly the comparison needs to stop. Kobe will never be MJ (even though he is the closest we will probably ever see). Lebron plays a different position, has a different role and plays a completely different style. GOAT conversation should include the older cats like Magic, Bird, Kareem, Russell, Gervin, MJ and maybe, maybe, mmaayybbee Kobe. But not Lebron. Not KD. As much as I love the watch this newer, quicker, faster more explosive generation. They wont be the GOAT when compared to those that came before them.

  • ALD

    @jtaylor damn, i thought ea was getting sued. But yea ea ****** the world with that. smh

  • Ctk

    80s to mid 90s was a more physical game but it’s more skilled now

  • AQWORD

    Gots to keep him motivated somehow. :-)

  • ALD

    SKIP BAYLESS AND STEPHEN A YELL ABOUT THIS EVERYDAY, LOL. we don’t need to chime in . Let LBJ and MJ live.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    I can’t put Wade on that level though. Everyone in the Top 50 has been good for a consistent basis, capable of taking bad/mediocre/average teams to the playoffs with tremendous individual performances.
    He’s not easily top 50, and he’s not almost as good a defender as LeBron is. It’s not even close now, nor was it last year. LeBron outstrips him in every facet of the game.
    Wade has had some very, very good individual seasons 08/9 & 9/10 come to mind statistically, but nah, he’s not easily top 50.
    Most recent playoffs, Wade was basically a passenger at times in the playoff run, who sometimes gave the steering wheel a hard jerk to get the car back on the road, but that’s about it.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Pippen fits in that top 50 comfortably, and is the better second option. He was better for Portland (if you consider R. Wallace option 1 at the time) and he was better for Chicago.
    During 06/7 to 09/10 Wade was option 1, 2 and 3.

  • the king

    @hursty man u playin wade that’s not cool top 50 easily

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Gotta disagree. Wade’s 06 Playoff run alone puts him in the Top-50. Add to that his career avgs in the RS/Playoffs and the fact that he’s already the 4th best SG of all-time.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Hursty “Everyone in the Top 50 has been good for a consistent basis, capable of taking bad/mediocre/average teams to the playoffs with tremendous individual performances.” Did you not watch basketball in 2009-2010? Were the Heat not in the playoffs? Was the core of that team not Wade, Michael Beasley, Mario Chalmers, Udonis Haslem and Jermaine O’Neal? Was Dwyane Wade not tremendous in that season? Has he not been consistently good/great? Have you looked at his career stat sheet? Did you watch Dwyane Wade play before 08-09? Are you aware that he’s been in the league for 9 seasons and after his rookie season, has had a superstar season every year except for his injury plagued 06-07 season and this past season where he sat out 17 games? Basically every year he’s been at 27, 7 and 5 when he’s been healthy. That’s not consistently good to you?

  • the king

    @ hursty pippen over wade no way wade got a ship by his self pippen was always a sidekick

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    That statline of 27, 7 and 5 when healthy and playing a full season is basically on par with Kobe…is Kobe not top 50? A shorter player with a better FG%. That’s Wade.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    Shock Exchange aren’t you a college s tudent? What were you maybe a month or so old when Bias played?

  • the king

    @ByAnyMeansNecessary thank you

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Do you people actually read the entire comment, or just skim through it and twist what you like to make a point about it?
    My 11:12 comment was in reply to nbk troll asking whether you wanted Wade or Pippen as the second option on your team. I said Pippen over Wade as the second option.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    Im surprised YOU didn’t throw Harold Minor out there as well.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    Wade had SHAQ, ALonzo, Gary Payton, Antoine Walker, White Chocolate, and James Posey. I know some of those dudes were past they prime, but still that is a hell of a supporting cast. Dont get me wrong Wade went off, but dont say he did it alone.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    As for Wade’s defensive capabilities, what guard in the league has blocked more shots or altered more shots in the past few seasons than he has? Miami’s defense is great because they have two of the best wing defenders in basketball.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    @ hursty i agree with you

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    Pippen > Wade ALL DAY

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Nah, we read it right. You said “Wade has had some very, very good individual seasons 08/9 & 9/10 come to mind statistically, but nah, he’s not easily top 50″. Straight from the horse’s mouth

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Hursty The major mistake you made was saying that Wade isn’t top 50. And attempted to explain it by saying that he hasn’t taken a bad team to the playoffs or been consistently good. Wrong. Nothing was twisted. That’s what you said.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    JT.. you have Wade over Drexler?

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Wade is too inconsistent and gambles too much to be among the best perimeter defenders in the NBA. He plays the passing lane well and is the greatest shotblocking guard since MJ but that alone doesn’t make you a great defender.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @Hursty: just skim through it to twist what we like to make a point about it

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    @WhiteMarkPrice What you just demonstrated is called “deductive reasoning.” Whould a HS student make references to Len Bias or Johnny Mathis?

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    P{ppen had one single season as ‘the man’ his entire career during his prime (25-33yrs of age) in 93/4. (Jordan came back late in ’95 regular season and they lost in the CF to the Magic).
    In the ’93/4 season, Pip averaged 49% field goal, 32% from 3, 8.7 boards, 5.6 assists, 2.9 steals, 0.8 blocks and 22ppg,
    His points, rebounds & steals were all career highs.
    He also is second in League history for career averages of steals for a forward, and 3rd in League history for assists from a forward over his career.
    Oh, and he’s one of only 4 players to lead his team in all 5 major statistical categories (points, rebounds, assists, steals, blocks).

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    My points are 1, Pippen is a better second option than Wade is/was (if you believe Wade was option 2 in 04/5 and 05/6 as well as 10/11 and 11/12).
    2. I also believe that if you are compiling a list of top 50 NBA players, Pippen comes in before Wade does, based on overall body of work. Statistically, Championships, awards etc.
    I think Pippen has a case for top 35 in that list, and Wade (if he makes it, comes in 45-50 region).

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    GP, yep. Wade won a championship as the undisputed best player on his team, has superior numbers in the RS/Playoffs and has more accolades in 9 seasons than Drexler had 15 seasons.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    None of that about Pippen negates the fact that Wade is top 50. No one is debating Pippen’s greatness. When you talk about two guards in the history of basketball, there aren’t many names that come to mind before Wade. Jordan…Kobe…after that, Wade is in the discussion.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    pippen > wade

  • pposse

    hey jtaylor in Lebron’s defense on your statement regarding his defense and being a notch below the likes of MJ Pip and Hakeem…he does play in a different era with different rules nowadays. Who knows what type of defender lebron would have been in the 80′s and 90′s. My guess is if he were able to be more physical (which the rules back then let you be) he would be a top notch defender; he anticipates well, and is an athletic freak.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Hursty, sorry but 1 great season by PIP doesn’t not trump 5 great seasons by Wade. I just can’t see how anyone can make a legitimate case for PIP to be above Wade on any Top-50 list. The man was a sidekick (albeit a great one) for the majority of his career.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    the whole “can’t happen because he lost in the finals” reasoning is stupid.
    .
    And Wade was only the undisputed best player on the Heat for 4 games. And he only had that opportunity in the first place because Dallas was so keyed in on Shaq. Wade’s finals performance was one of the top 5 series of all-time, but he was not the best player on that team.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    Fair enough JT.. although some would argue it was still Shaq’s team in 06, even though the 06 Finals state otherwise. But, tbh, I agree Wade probably gets the edge over Drexler, but it’s very close.
    I’m assuming your top 3 SG’s above Wade were:
    Jordan
    Kobe
    West
    ^Most hoop heads would agree with that top 3 when it comes to SG’s anyway.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    How does maybe the 3rd or 4th best shooting guard ever come in the 45-50 region? By the time the playoffs started in the first championship season, Wade was option 1. Shaq was headed downwards. What is ridiculous is the idea that Wade isn’t top 50. As for the argument that Pippen is a better 2nd option, let’s not forget that Wade has taken a step back for LeBron because he’s the best player in the world. He didn’t have an off season because his game has fallen off. He chose to take that step back to make the team better. Which means that at 100%, he would still be around 25, 6 and 5 even with the injuries and surgeries he’s had. In my opinion, Wade is better without LeBron than Scottie was without Jordan.

  • kobe

    Even if lebron got 5 mvps and 8 rings people wouldn’t give him greatest of all-time because we have all put this barrier that MJ cannot be surpassed. I my dad always says there is always an improvement. MJ might not have gotten all those defensive player awards or even been that good of a defender without hand checks. Imagine if Lebron could put his hand on a defender and push him….just saying Lebron has what it takes to surpass jordan and is on the path but as fans we have to accept that he has doneit when its all said and done if he does.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Wade wasn’t a sidekick to Shaq during their MIA run. Shaq said it numerous times that it was Wade’s team.

  • kobe

    @GP23 Elgin Baylor and oscar robinson count as SF?

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    I’m saying that I would select Pippen over Wade making a top 50 list. And I would have an issue with Wade being over around the 45th position.To me, that’s not ‘easily’ making it in.
    Are we not including Hondo in the greatest 2 guard outside of Jordan/Bryant? What about Oscar Robertson? He was 6’5 and played both guard spots.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @nbk I’d say Wade was the best player on that team. Shaq was keyed in on because of how big and powerful he was, not really because he was still the Shaq he was in LA. He only averaged 20 and 9 that season and in the playoffs, he averaged 18 and 9. Wade averaged 28, 6 and 6. By the time the playoffs started, that team belonged to Wade.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Oscar Robinson was never a small forward. Elgin Baylor was.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @Hursty: the points you made about pippen sound quite reasonable but it seems as if you oversee a little bit wades greatness. just check wades numbers when he was “the man” on the team. to me james was the robin to wade being batman and wade the first option when it came down to close out a game. james took over that role during the 11/12 season. wade became the heats undisputed no.1 option during the 06 finals when he multilated dallas. well, he had a alot of exaggerated help from the officials but thats still hard to take away from him. how he carried the heat after shaq left was also over-human like and he did it all, scoring at a high fg%, standing tall in the clutch, passing, rebounding and playing superior defense. we dont know if pippen wouldve also been able to carry a team on his shoulders because he played together with the greatest player of all time.

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

    Co-sign jtaylor at 9:52. Lebron redeemed himself somewhat with last season championship but losing to the mavericks the way he did in the previous finals was inexcusable. He had the talent surrounding him and failed miserably.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    06 Wade- 27ppg/5.7rpg/6.7apg/1.9spg/49% during RS
    06 Wade- 28ppg/6rpg/6apg/2spg/50% during the Playoffs

    06 Shaq- 20ppg/9rpg/1.8bpg/60% during the RS
    06 Shaq- 18ppg/10/61% during the Playoffs

    Explain to me again how Wade wasn’t the best player and how the 06 Heat wasn’t his team?

  • http://newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    While Wade is contemplating this nonsense about Wade and Jordan, (i) the Lakers have put together a team with “exceptionally more talent than the rest of the L” and (ii) everyone else has the Heat in their crosshairs. Wade and ‘bron had better be focused on protecting the throne.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    That was Wade’s team and he went off NO DOUBT. however he had SHAQ, ZO, GP, Antoine Walker, and white choc. Yea they was old, but thats not your average supporting cast.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Shaq said lots of bullsh*t. That being your reason is ridiculous Taylor. I don’t know if everyone’s memory was brainwashed by Wade highlights or what. But Dallas was double teaming Shaq every time he came anywhere close to the ball. Wade took advantage of the opportunity.
    .
    In terms of their regular season numbers, Wade played 38 minutes a game, Shaq played 30 – which is why Wade’s numbers make it look like he was the main guy on that team. Then when you look at the per 36 minute numbers it become more clear that Shaq was still the top dog.
    .
    This isn’t to take anything away from Wade, but to give him the credit on that Heat team as the best player is to ignore everything else about that season and how that Heat team found success. Shaq dominated the paint, demanded double teams, and opened the court up for everyone else.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    @Shock, I was just hoping someone in their 30′s isn’t still refering to themselves in the third person. Douchey move

  • Joblo

    He’ll never be better than jordan simply because he gave up on his team and had to go elsewhere to win a chip. Rather than being the man and sticking it out he just gave up, so really he’s a quitter in my eyes.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    If youre Dallas, in 2006, who do you double team out of Wade and Shaq? Do you let Wade run rampant while limiting O’Neal inside by throwing doubles at him, or do you let O’Neal single-handedly get your weak front-line in foul trouble, allowing him to do whatever he wanted? I’d say you double Shaq and take your chances with Wade. Remember, they ‘were’ up 2-0 in that series.

  • pposse

    Wades heroics in the 06 finals should not be overlooked. That was probably the 2nd or best finals performance ever (Jordan vs. Suns the other one). He dropped 40ppg in the victories. Shaq was no slouch either, he had his 20 and 10. Wade that year in the playoffs was a beast, he was even averaging 1 block a game! in no way was shaq on the decline tho in 06.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    i mean: a team on his shoulders to win a championship

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    LeBron’s individual performance during his 1st 2 Final apperances play more of a role than his team losing. It’s inexcusable for a man with his talent to perform so badly against the Spurs then followed that by wetting the bed in his next Finals appearance vs the Mavs.
    MJ would have lost with those teams LeBron played with in Cleveland but I promise you he doesn’t avg. 22ppg on 35% shooting with 5.7 TOs or play hot potato with the ball like LeBron did vs DAL.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    “I like Dwyane (Wade). Dwyane is a terrific player. He got a lot of credit for winning a championship (in 2006), but if you go back and look at their series, the reason they won that series is because of Shaquille (O’Neal). He got the one game where he shot 100 free throws. But Shaquille O’Neal and Alonzo Mourning were the difference in that series.” – Charles Barkley. — Just to show we can all find quotes to back up our argument.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Shaq was also a tremendous passer back in the day. Not Webber or Divac or Sabonis passing, but still very, very good. Had no issue stepping away from the postup position when he got doubled, facing up and finding the open guy. That definitely helped vs Dallas.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I just want to say that LeBron didn’t disappear in the 2007 Finals. He just couldn’t shoot and the Spurs made him shoot. He played hard and got 22 a game, but he didn’t have the skillset to dominate against a good defensive team.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @nbk: sure, mourning and shaq were a great inside presence but i think whenever a guy goes off to score 40 in wins, making decisive plays, then he is the man. nevertheless, anybody who is “the man” in a win cant do it all alone. it allways takes 5 commited guys going out there doing their job. if you name shaq and zo then we also have to mention posey and haslem who made life so tough for dirk, by then arguably the best or one of the best / most efficient scorers in the game, that he shot 39% in that series. they were on his feet at any move he made. im not so sure if miami wouldve won just one game if haslem n posey wouldnt hve shut down dirk so well no matter what shaq, wade or zo wouldve done.

  • pposse

    yo nbk Wade took that finals by storm. His numbers back that up. No player just magically gets their ‘robin’ to drop 40ppg in the victories. Without Shaq they lose the series, but without Wade they get swept.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    LOL, holding the San Antonio loss over LeBron is like me holding Game 5 in 1989 and 1990 over Jordan’s head. Or holding Magic Johnson being swept twice over his. What matters in the end is how much the players wins. Every guy fails, and fails badly during their career – it is part of the process. If LeBron wins the next 7 championships and wins 3 more MVPs in the process, he will be in the Jordan conversation. Do i think he’ll get there? hell no. But he definitely can. His past failures have no barring. Just like Jordan’s don’t.

  • http://newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    @whitemarkprice “Sergeant Schultz”

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    I’m done, it’s 3am here.
    Good discussion, thanks!

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    all of you guys just read that Charles Barkley quote and think i said it?
    .
    “Wade was only the undisputed best player on the Heat for 4 games. And he only had that opportunity in the first place because Dallas was so keyed in on Shaq. Wade’s finals performance was one of the top 5 series of all-time, but he was not the best player on that team.”
    .
    Will you dummy’s stop responding to me without actually reading what i’m saying. it’s tedious for me to repeat myself over and over again.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @allenp: by disappearing people maybe mean exactly that. the spurs made it so tough for james to play out his strenghts, that he was forced to do things he was not good at. he looked totally lost when they double teamed him on any high pick and roll and didnt let cleveland play their one on one iso for james. he was very young at this time and i dont understand people putting any blame on him for this series. i was just suprised that this happened again in 11 but this is another story

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    I feel like y’all are giving Shaq too much respect while downplaying what a 24yr old Wade accomplished. I know that as a guard playing next to Shaq allows for countless one-on-one opportunities on the perimeter but Kobe played next to a more dominant Shaq and he never came close to putting up the kind of numbers Wade put up in those Finals (not even in even in the 04 Finals, when Kobe took a more aggressive approach).

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I actually disagree with NBK about that Dallas series in 2006.
    The Heat struggled initially because the Mavericks refused to double Shaq and allowed Erik Dampier to guard him in single coverage. Through the first three or four games of the series, Dampier was outplaying Shaq on both ends if my memory serves me correctly. The Heat abandoned going through Shaq on the block, cued up the high pick and roll and the rest was history.
    And just for the record, Dallas didn’t get jobbed by the refs. The very next year, Golden State ran the exact same play as the Heat over and over again and upset Dallas in the first round. The Mavs were just horrible at defending big guards in the high pick and roll.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @nbk: i didnt say you said it, just commented on the barkley quote.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk troll

    When a defense has to double and triple SHAQ to stop him from going for 50. Wade gets off. its that simple. Not to mention they had Great role players too.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Also, in 2005-2006, Wade averaged about 27, 7 and 6 for the season.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @allenp: come on, dallas didnt defend big guards in the high pick and roll well and wade and boom dizzle played outstanding in these series. that doesnt change that the refs obviously called in favour of the heat. you could read that in any media outside miami by that time for a reason and most of us saw it with our own eyes. that leaves a little bitter aftertaste on the 06 championship for the heat imo

  • CorySP8

    Top Dog=Bill Russell

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    @danpowers yeahh or you didnt know it was a Barkley quote in the first place

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    @Shock Exchange, “Theo Huxtable”

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Barkley cannot be trusted as a basketball mind. He’s an entertainer. He barely watches games man.
    Wade was the undisputed leader of the team. The year before the Heat were set to upset Detroit before Wade hurt his ribs and Shaq couldn’t take over with him at 60 percent.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    I’m talking about 2 different series in which LeBron failed to show up individually, you’re talking about 2 games in which MJ struggled.
    I’m not holding those losses over LeBron’s head but as of now, over their first 3 Finals appearanaces, MJ was 3-3 with 31/36/41ppg avgs while LeBron is 1-3 with 22/17/28ppg avgs. I can only go by those numbers. None of us knows what the future holds for LeBron’s career, so to try and predict how it plays out is foolish.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @Hursty: i can read so i knew lol.

  • http://newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    @whitemarkprice Everybody wants to catch fade with the Shock Exchange .. that is until they get on the court and see what an All-American actually looks like.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    @Shock Exchange, I don’t play tennis.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Man, anytime there is a foul disparity people say it’s cheating.
    You run high pick and roll and you have a big, athletic guard who initiates contact on every foray to the rim. And he CONSTANTLY goes to the rim. He’s being defended by Jason Terry with Dirk as the main help defender because Dampier is scared to come off Shaq.
    OF COURSE HE’S EITHER LIVING AT THE RIM OR LIVING AT THE FREE THROW LINE!
    What’s sad is how many media members didn’t note these salient facts. Wade got superstar calls. Dirk got superstar calls. Wade got more calls because he was living in the freaking lane. That’s a basketball law. If you live in the lane and at the rim, you will go to the line more. Period.

  • Mike

    Who was the big guards of mjs day are they as athletic as he was are they bigger than he was how many shooting guards were 6’5 or better IMO I don’t think there were that many people that were that good until he aged an the new breed came in like who actually did he guard in the finals or who guarded him
    La vs chi Byron Scott smh
    Port vs chi Clyde drexler ok
    Phoe vs. chi Jeff hornesec
    Chi vs sea Hersey Hawkins an Gary Payton
    Chi vs Utah Jeff hornesec
    Chi vs Utah Jeff hornesec an Byron Russell
    Who reall was a match for mj out of that group who was his real challenge

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Had an argument with a cat the other day who said that people hold Kobe’s shooting percentage against him when discussing his legacy compared to Jordan’s, but they rarely note that Jordan wasn’t facing the same sort of athletic defenders and serious defenses as Kobe. It was an interesting argument.

  • http://newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    Pick a park.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    Barkley has said things that I agree with and things I don’t agree with. Which is why people have discussions. I don’t agree that Wade went off simply and only because the Mavs were spending all of their energy and time trying to stop Shaq. I don’t include other people’s opinions in my arguments because I have my own. Kenny Smith doesn’t agree with Barkley all the time. If he can disagree, people here definitely can. I personally don’t think there are a lot of basketball minds that are better or analysts that are better than Kenny Smith. Didn’t Shaq himself disagree with Barkley when he made that statement on the show? I believe he did. Shaq’s an entertainer, but he is usually pretty serious when he’s talking about basketball and expressing his opinions.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Allen you are remembering those finals wrong. Dampier had one good game – but he didn’t even start. Diop was the starter for Dallas. And they didn’t double team at the beginning of game 1, a game in which Shaq went 8-11 (1-9 from the Free Throw Line though) for 17 points. Dallas then double teamed him the rest of the series. They were even triple teaming him in game 2, here is an excerpt from a Wilbon article the next day
    .
    “We’re not used to seeing the Big Fella unplugged like this. We’re not used to seeing him reduced to the size of a regular humanoid through an opponent’s double- and triple-teams. We’re not accustomed to seeing Shaq score a measly five points in any kind of playoff game, much less the NBA Finals”

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Allenp Jordan may not have faced the kind of defenders that Kobe has with the exception of the Bad Boys (no team in the league now can get away with that kind of aggressiveness), but we also have to admit that Kobe takes a lot of unnecessary tough shots with two or three people on him and has done it consistently.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    My bad then, my memory must be faulty. Thanks for the quotation. Although, since Wilbon is a noted jock sniffer, he might have just been making excuses. Lol.

  • Da-Meat-Hook

    @ JTaylor21, I see what you’re saying, but MJ didn’t make it to the finals until he was almost 29 years old and at the apex of his game. I don’t think it’s fair to compare that MJ to the still developing 23 (and maybe even 26) year old Lebron who has grown leaps and bounds since losing in the finals. Especially that young Bron who lost to the Spurs.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    Shock, I’ll play you one on one at the Rucker buddy. ;)

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    haha trust that i didn’t want to use a Wilbon article to back up my story, but i thought that was a fair assessment of what i remember from that series.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    JTaylor, you can’t compare Jordan after 3 finals appearances to LeBron after 3, simply because LeBron has been to 3 finals at a younger age than Jordan was even to 1.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    @kobe.. No, Baylor was a forward, and with Oscar Robertson.. well that’s up for debate, but he was mainly the point guard on his teams. (dude averaged 12 assists for a couple seasons I think) If you wanna go there with him being a 2, then replace him with West, but I could make a decent argument that West was better than Oscar so….

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    So you don’t think defenses were serious in the late 80s and especially in the 90s? The Knicks and Bad Boy Pistons put team defense’s of this era to shame.
    LA vs IND- Kobe went up against the defensive juggernaut of JRose/Miller
    LA vs PHI- Kobe went up against the stellar combo of Mckie/ESnow
    LA vs NJ- Kobe went up against Kerry Kittles
    LA vs DET- Kobe went up against Rip/Prince
    LA vs BOS- Kobe went up against Ray/JPosey
    LA vs ORL- Kobe went up against Courtney Lee/Pietrus
    LA vs BOS- Kobe went up against Ray Allen
    Doesn’t look like a stellar group of challengers to me.

  • Basketball_iQ

    +250 comments…
    To be on par with j-dog, in golf terms, lebron has to birdie the next 14 holes..lmao.
    That’s how he’ll become the greatest of all time.
    &i like your comments hursty.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Team Defenses are better today than they have been at any point in NBA history. WAY WAY WAY better.
    .
    It’s why they keep changing rules to enable the offensive players more freedom. This is the lowest scoring, slowest pace era since the shot clock was enacted for a reason.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    You know when the LeBron/MJ and Kobe/MJ debates will be the most fun to have? After they’re both done playing. Kobe may have two or three more runs in him. LeBron has some time. Let’s see how many rings he has, look at the stats, the individual awards, how long he stays the unquestioned best player in basketball, etc. That can only be done when he’s finished playing. We can talk all day about what LeBron might do or could do, but I’d rather wait and see what he actually does.

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    Shock Exchange= Rory Sparrow Jr.????

  • http://nicekicks.com MeloMan15

    At the time they joined forces with their superstar teammates, Wade was lightyears better than Pippen. It’s amazing to think that Pippen developped into a top 50 player under Jordan. Unlike Wade, who established himself long before he teamed up with Lebron. For that fact alone i would say Wade was the better player, but Scotties career is far more impressive

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Shock Exchange’s Dad was an All-American at a D-III school in 1989. Idk why he’s claiming that he is what an “all-american looks like” because he’s not.

  • Rainman

    Guys plz. He’s more magic than michael. And that’s not even said in a bad way in this context. They both had similar early career struggles(remember ‘tragic’ magic? Comparable to bron against dallas in 11) even tho magic carried his team to a chip as a rook. He didn’t exactly have a jordanesque killer instinct all the time. A great nba body (6’8) lebron has got, but has as good court vision as a point guard. Remind u of anyone? His oncourt demeanor and skills translates to that of magic to me. Whereas kobe will be the closest to jordan we’ve ever seen(in all the good and bad ways) LeBron still has the ability to surpass kobe in the all time rank tho. Im not saying that just cuz bron is more magic and kobe is more jordan that lebron has to automatically be a peg below him in the all time rankings, the way magic is to jordan. Their career is going to be telling of that.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    I understand what you’re saying. Changes in defensive rules have allowed defenses to be more complex than ever before but you seriously think that the top defensive teams today (CHI/BOS/MIA) are better defensively than the late 80s Pistons and early 90s Knicks? I doubt it.

  • http://nba.com GP23

    I hear you nbk. The team defenses of this era are more developed and systematic. There is a reason the illegal defense rules and the shot clock was put in place. The league didn’t want it to become a “Jump shot league” and therefore made more freedom for the offense. Team defenses have gotten stronger. This is due to many reasons, with coaching being obvisously enhanced from back in the day, and coaching clinics being held in every state pretty much every week to develop players on their defense etc.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    i just think it’s totally different. i don’t discount anyone’s championships because of who they faced. i do think the 09 Celtics are a better defense than then the bad boys pistons and 90s Knicks. But I don’t think every good defense is. And I don’t think beating current teams is any easier than beating those older ones were.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Hey, I just passed along the argument. I was on the other side of the debate arguing that Kobe’s shooting percentage is what it is because Kobe likes taking difficult shots to show how good he is. But, the argument was with the increased emphasis on defensive scheming and different defensive rules of today, Jordan would have struggled to shoot over 50 percent four or five times in his career like he did.
    I don’t know if this is true, but that was the argument. Like I said, I think Kobe had an added advantage of playing with Shaq, which should make your shooting percentage go up, but I respected the argument.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Honestly, the reason defense has changed more than any other aspect of NBA basketball is because defense was not even a focus for teams until those Pistons squads came to prominence. That late 80s Pistons squad is responsible for the focus on defense in the modern NBA. You could say they had the same effect on how defense is played as Jordan (and taken a step further by Iverson) did on how offense is played.

  • Rainman

    All in all what im trying to say is: The LeBron -Jordan comparisons need to stop. LeBrons not Jordan in almost any way.

  • Drig

    ’08 Celts D IMO was just as good as the Bad Boys’ D. At times, I thought it was better.

  • pposse

    lebron lost to dallas with d wade and chris bosh as his co stars. This after he proclaimed 8 rings..forget about the loss against the spurs when he was 22. Lebron was in his prime against Dallas and lost, something Jordan NEVER did (besides the year he came back)…but if you guys want to hold that against the great one then note the next full year back MJ went 72-10..the Heat weren’t even the #1 seed in the east this past year. There is no comparison. There is Jordan and then there is everyone else.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Team defenses are better but individual defenders were better back then due to less restrictions on physical play on the perimeter.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Chicago people are fanatics for real.

  • Flud

    Ah….the summer. gotta love it

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    The biggest reason the Jordan/LeBron discussion can take place is because I think it’s safe to say that overall, LeBron may have a better career than Kobe. Everyone talked about Jordan and Kobe before LeBron became the best player in the league. Now he’s there. So if LeBron is going to be more accomplished than Kobe, the only other guy people can compare him to is Jordan because he scores more than Magic yet has a lot of the passing ability that Magic had. That’s why people don’t have the LeBron/Magic conversation.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    LeBron has shot over 50% 3 different times so far in his career, so if LeBron could do it, I see no problems with MJ doing it.

  • Drig

    So……even if LeBron 3peats ( which I don’t think he will but let’s say he does ) and then repeats to get 6 titles, gets 2-3 more MVPs and plays at his usual pace, he’s worse than Jordan?? Seriously, I get that Jordan was great and all but I don’t get why failing once is a knock on a player if he can come back and win the same number of times. So, Durant is automatically not gonna be better than MJ when he wins 6 titles because he lost to LBJ and the Heat in the Finals?!

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Honestly, LeBron should only be compared to the best players ever at the same point in their careers. Over a full career LeBron doesn’t stack up with anyone in the top 10 yet. But through the same amount of time / at the same age, he’s up there with everyone.

  • pposse

    allenp we are ranked the best sports fans in the world…according to espn

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    That’s it! Ya’ll got my dander up! And I’m not sure I can get it back down.

  • Drig

    @ByAnyMeansNecessary…….Kobe’s gonna come back strong next season and can win the title next season. Besides, LBJ, despite the position difference, has a team similar to Jordan’s Bulls ( 2nd option perimeter player, solid supporting cast and bench, decent scoring PF ) than Shaq-Kobe and Kobe’s Lakers ( Post player 2nd option/1A option, passable to non-existent bench and defensive oriented perimeter players with Metta and Fox back in the day ). Makes the comparisons easier. Besides, we’ve dealt with Kobe-MJ comparisons for a decade already. We’ll get back to it soon though. ;)

  • TheWhiteMarkPrice

    @Shock Exchange, if your dad was in college in 89, how do you have such great memories of Len Bias? Youtube &the an almanac?

  • Drig

    ppose………ESPN didn’t consider soccer fans I hope. Because football fans just destroy any competition worse than the Dream Team did it back in ’92 as far as rabid fan support goes.

  • pposse

    naw drig i was just referring to espn.chicago being the first website espn made dedicated strictly for a city. Since then most cities got their own website, but chi town was the first..it was some public poll they took i think

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Shock Exchange

    @whitemarkprice Your focus should be less on the Shock Exchange and more on the gems I’m droppin’ on here. MJ is 1A and Bias 1B. Book it.

  • pposse

    anything is possible with lebron, if he does go out and win atleast 3 in a row and then some more rings that will be quite impressive. BUT lets not act like Lebron doesnt have one of the sickest teams of all time. The public opinion here is that Wade was a better baller than Pippen right. I agree with that atleast, and Chris Bosh is a better overall ball player than Ho Grant or Dennis Rodman (i think this is debatable tho). The team and talent he surrounds himself around is better than the 90s Bulls by a mile. So when they lose to Dallas, it was a HUGE let down. Plus, even if the Heat win all these rings in the future, do you guys really think that Lebron will be Finals MVP for all of them? I’m thinkin that Wade can very easily get a couple of those

  • Drig

    Wade doesn’t look like he can remain healthy enough to remain on the floor enough to mold the team around him like LBJ can. Provided LBJ doesn’t suffer an injury setback ( and I hope he doesn’t ), I don’t see how Wade can wrest away the control from LBJ, esp. since Wade’s athleticism is gonna start falling and he needs to depend on that wacky jumper more. BTW, just thinking, wouldn’t the OKC team Heat beat be at the very least on par with the opponents MJ beat in the Finals??? Also, would they be better than the ’08 Celts since they’d play right into teh C’s strategy?

  • mask

    idk. LeBron is LeBron and Jordan is Jordan. comparing them is like comparing skittles and starburst. i dont know where im going with this but yeah.

  • Da-Meat-Hook

    @ mask, I don’t think it’s fair to compare skittles and startburst this early in starburst’s career . . .

  • Omar

    Lebron may not be on Jordan’s level yet but this argument about Lebron losing in the finals is the worst I’ve ever heard. When Jordan was the same age as Lebron in his finals losses, Jordan was losing in the first round (87) and the eastern conference finals (90). How is losing earlier in the playoffs better?

  • Omar

    For all the talk about who had what help, Mike definitely had better coaching and that helps a lot. Mike was coached by Dean Smith, Doug Collins and Phil (lord of the rings) Jackson. Lebron was coached by his homeboy’s father, Paul Silas (one of the worst coaches ever), Mike Brown and Erik Spoelstra.

    Just something to think about, Lebron’s learning curve is a little steeper.

  • Feez_22

    I personally don’t have any problem with what wade said. However, this notion that lebron can’t surpass jordan because he underperformed in 2 finals… I personally think that the 07 finals really can’t be held against the guy. If lebron had a decent team in 07 that actually had a legitimate shot at winning the nba finals then i would say otherwise. that team had no business even being in the finals. They were only there because lebron played great vs the pistons and flip saunders is an idiot coach. However, 2010 and 2011 could clearly be held against said lebron james. 2 yrs where he personally came up small as hell. I would also say 08 but that 47 point game 7 in boston was pretty epic and should have been enough to win (although he let pierce go off for 44). I think lebron and jordan have different career paths and are totally different players. Its such a high standard to pass guys like kareem, bird and magic nonetheless jordan but for lebron to be considered as good as a talent as those 4 is pretty cool. The fact that this is even a conversation is baffling but hey… the media is what it is. flip flopping know it alls… When lebron james went to miami, charles barkley said it eliminated him from being compared 2 mike jordan. 2 yrs later, barkley totally flips and says lebron could be better than mike jordan. see people… the media is here to build a player up to break them down. How about we wait and see what lebron can become?

  • pposse

    and forget the hardware, will lebron even get 20plus games of 50 points in his life? How about a 60 pt explosion here and there? Those are the things that make Jordan the greatest when coupled with his championship successes. He did as much winning as one human could possibly do, PLUS he has done all of the individual things that you can do…someone already said it here..but Lebron needs to birdie the next 14 holes!

  • Da-Meat-Hook

    @ pposse, I don’t think 50 and 60 point games offer huge merit when comparing players head to head. For exanple, one could argue that at 27, Lebron ALREADY has 7 more career triple doubles than Jordan, which IMHO warrants just as much if not more merit when evaluating greatness. I’m not saying Bron’s even close to being at MJ’s level, but a case can be made when evaluating where they are/were at @ 27 years of age.

  • pposse

    @da-meet-hook just out of curiousity what would you rather have? A 50 point explosion or a triple double?

  • Da-Meat-Hook

    Triple double. No question. Scoring 50 points shows that you’ve mastered one aspect of the game. It’s a beautiful thing to watch a player catch fire and simply go off. That being said, a triple double shows that you made a serious impact on 3 of the most important aspects of the game. For example, what’s more memorable, Wilt averaging 50ppg for a season or Big O averaging a triple double for a season?

  • pposse

    My personal preference would be to drop 50. Wilts 50 ppg and 20 rebs is more memorable to me. I’m not taking anything away from Oscar Robertson, cause a triple double is ridiculous too. What is funny tho, is that I think both of those guys thought/still think that they are the better player than MJ. Like, legitametely think they are the better player.

  • heartlandG

    Can we STOP this discussion untill we see if Lebron can even surpass KOBE!!! – shit

  • heartlandG

    ALD Posted: Aug.24 at 9:57 am
    this is off topic but does anyone miss playing college basketball games?

    ^ i do…wish they make anotha ‘Coach K’ member when Magic Johnson use to break tha glass w MSU lol

  • ctk

    QUESTION …Does Bron 1ring as the man puts him pass Pippen with 6(even though he was a SIDEKICK he still was top 10 n the league)on your all time list

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Bron will never be Jordan. Lets see if Bron can get to Kobe success first. Nobody will ever be MJ, but there is someone close to him and looking for more rings.

  • Kirsty

    It’s simply impact…and marketability. And no one ever passes Jordan on that. Ten rings wouldn’t matter. Jordan’s the face of the sport. It’s like Ali And boxing, or pele and football. Marketing wise Jordan was
    Much more marketable… Middle America appeal. Lebron is less attractive, tattooed up and seen as arrogant and cash focused. So who cares.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Hey, keepin it on topic, who’s better next year, AK-47, or Nic Batum??

  • robb

    Nic Batum

  • Hoophead915

    Honestly Batum was a bum for France after inking that big extension he goes out and plays like that. Kirilenko came out making a statement early in tye summer games and that point guard of theirs who also signed w/minn as well showed flashes , they got POTIENTAL

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Kirelinko.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @the seed: true. but kobe could theoretically add 2 more rings or so, people would still consider jordan as better and point out, that any ring kobe earns now would be because of howard or more talented team than jordan had. like almost nobody says bill russell is the best of all time coz he had 8 rings. just dont really see any championship coming for the lakers unless their bench stays the way it is.

  • ctk

    Batum cuz of the 3pt shooting ability

  • http://www.nba.com son.of.dad

    * shockexhange & thewhitemarkprice just played this out like the band on the titanic. We do our thing even when this mess goes down.
    * wades top 50 if dirk is.
    * cannot compare lebron and mj. I mean …. you can but it doesn’t work.

  • http://www.xvideos.com nbk troll

    Batum gets more mins and more plays designed for him to score. He is #2 option where AK47 there for D.

  • Lboogie

    Kobe is the best and you all can kiss my ass. Smelly lizards!

  • Lboogie

    Jordan played in an era that was far more difficult than lebron. Men played against Jordan, while lebron is playing with kids out of HS. Handcheck rule was never applied to Jordan so defenders were more physical. Jordan earned his while NBA applied the rule a year after Lebron came into the league…hmm…wonder why.

  • http://www.twitter.com/hurstysyd Hursty

    Kirilenko. He was dominating that entire Olympics until he had a quadriceps injury.

  • Roscoe

    Bron bron cannot be better than MJ because he won a Le’bronze & lost 2 finals. According to all the KB24 haters KB24 cannot be better than MJ bc he lost 2 finals as well, but KB24 never earned a Le’bronze and has 4 more rings and counting while Bron bron is going into his prime.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @Roscoe: jordan lost 6 straight playoff series and never faced the quality of competition that james faced when james won bronze. so while jordan lost in the semis or conf finals, james took one team to the finals allready. that accomplishment aint inferior to jordans by this time of his carreer. anyway, jordan was still the better player than james will ever be but for different reasons.

  • Feez_22

    no roscoe… kb24 can’t be better than jordan bc kobe isn’t that caliber of player nor talent. Lebron is not that caliber of player but is that caliber in terms of overall talent (many would admit that lebron is one of the most talented in nba history in terms of what he can do for a team… don’t confuse talent with skill: skill is assosc. with caliber of player) which is why people always bring his name up (which they shouldn’t). If you want 2 debate this then sure… but i think if you look deep into it you know its true.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Kobe has 5 rings. And his finals failures are not at all what Seperate him from Jordan. There’s no reason it should.

  • roscoe

    @danpowers: is it MJs fault the competition according to you was inferior? ur argument lacks substance. My argument is losing and winning is all that counts.

  • roscoe

    Feez_22… kb24 lost in the finals twice… MJ was perfect. My argument is that winning titles & not losing in the finals is all that matters when comparing MJ to other players. Awards mean nothing, rings are everything. As we know the NBA has seen many talented players. Talk to me about titles.

  • roscoe

    @danpowers: is it MJs fault the level of competition according to you was inferior? Your assumption doesn’t support your argument. My point is that winning when it counts and losing when it counts does matter when comparing players from different eras. Any player that has the level of talent MJ did (ie Bron, KB24) loses the debate if they lose in the finals bc it simply means they were unable to perform in the clutch which MJ never failed to do.

  • Drig

    @roscoe……….So you’re telling me that Durant automatically can NEVER be better than MJ just because he lost in the Finals even though he led an OKC team to the Finals at an age when MJ was getting swept in the 1st round? Dafaq kinda logic is that??? @Feez_22…..So skill is related to the caliber of the player yet Kobe isn’t the same caliber of player jordan was? Wait what?

  • roscoe

    MJ smoked Long Beach St. player B. Russell for the famous last shot in Utah, but KD smoked Long Beach St. in the 1st round of NCAA while playing for Texas, but lost in the finals. Yes… KD will not be better than MJ in any sports writer’s eyes or columns.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    it wasnt mjs fault and as i said, he is the goat and lebron is not on jordans level. but please: winning when it counts? oh my, have you guys ever played basketball on a high level yourselves? doesnt look like that. it ALLWAYS counts. not getting to the finals at all meant he lost 6 years in the row when it mattered too. not getting to the finals at all coz you werent clutch in the semis or conf finals is still worse than getting your team to the finals and losing there. and by the way, being clutch is just one part of team success, it takes way more than one player being clutch for a team to come up on top. there are allways 5 guys on the floor who have to do their job perfect or at least better than the 5 guys on the other team. jordan wouldnt have won without his supporting cast while james wouldntve won his first chip without his guys neither. so the amount of championships should be one part of the consideration about which player is the greatest of all time but it also comes down to many other things as individual skills and the way a player uses his skills or teamplay, etc…

  • http://www.nba.com son.of.dad

    Against Utah MJ commited a GROSS cross over that should have been called a carry ball. Infront of hornacek. Last posession Utah leading in Chicago which should have forced a game seven back in Utah. Believe me if MJ was called for that play it would have changed everything. But it wasn’t. It didn’t. Malone stockton go home with nothing and Jordan got sloans championship. MJ is straight up the goat no ifs or buts.

  • roscoe

    danny boy… easy fella. you make some good points, but we are talking about unicorns and rainbows here (meaning: who is the best ever?). With that in mind a tainted finals record weighs more heavily than a tainted playoff loss record. Losing in the finals at a younger age still means you lost in the finals. In order to be considered the greatest ever for at least the next 50 years that person cannot lose in the finals thanks to the MJ precedent, 6-0. But by all means continue with your emotional rant above which gave me a laugh.

  • Zabbah

    I think Lebron is one title + Finals MVP away from surpassing Jordan. I mean, right now they’re on the same level. One, title and if he hits the championship shot.

  • http://slam flight9

    Jordan is still the man period. Lebron “might” be better all around talent but Jordan is still the GOAT!!! even if LBJ wins 6 rings!!!!!!!!!!

  • NYballr

    Kobe is the goat and the measuring stick that players strive for. 81 points in a game, 62 in 3 quarters outscoring the Mavs before he sat down, 61 @ the Garden, 12 3s in a game, soon to be all-time leading playoffs scorer, 7 game-winners in one season, ect.

  • gg

    Better raise his resume, took a dam big hit coming to miami. Gotta to something more over the top to have a solid argument over MJ

  • Ivan

    If KD doesn’t get any better than LeBron may get 6 rings.
    After all KD has the chance to surpass Kareem

  • AQWORD

    ^^^ LOL yeah. a measuring stick for a pr!(k . great selfish stats. But could Kobe average a triple double ? im with flight9

  • Drig

    @NYballr…….Kobe is arguably the measuring stick that scorers strive for. Overall game? No.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @roscoe: 6 rings and 12 total finals appearences would still be a greater achievement than 6 rings out of 6 appearences because it wouldve meant just more success overall. sorry man but to me that “being perfect in the finals” doesnt make any sense at all

  • Cool Dude

    Let me know when Lebron averages 32/8/8 on 54% shooting.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    This might not have been mentioned, but I think LeBron finishing second behind Jordan after his career is over isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Even if he doesn’t match him, good luck finding someone who will get closer than LeBron probably will. One more title and Finals MVP will put him level with Kobe if you ask me. Forget the big scoring games. Kobe has only 2 championships as the best player on his team, only 2 Finals MVPs. If LeBron gets past 2, he will leave Kobe behind. LeBron can have 50 point games, but we all know his game is different. He’s a playmaker before anything. The best part of his game is his passing still. Kobe had those big scoring games because he’s one of the best pure scorers to ever play. The 50 point games are great, but I’d rather have the guy who can do everything on the court. Notice that LeBron’s 50 point games also included him doing everything else on the floor while also scoring at will. To be behind Jordan and Magic, LeBron needs 2 more Finals wins and Finals MVPs putting him at 3 rings, 3 Finals MVPs, add in a few more regular season MVPs. That would easily move him past Kobe leaving only Jordan and Magic in front of him. What also should be talked about is LeBron’s durability. Dude only misses games to get some rest.

  • KC

    Lebron has as much or more ability on the court as mike does no question!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Mike is viewed as a legend because his career is over and we only remember the great things he did. Lebron is still playing so we remember when he fails or makes a mistake. Mike made tons of mistakes and failed plenty of times in his career but we only think of his greatest moments that are replayed to us over and over. I don’t care how many rings lebron wins. All I need is my eyes to judge the talent, athleticism, leadership, and hunger Bron plays with every single time he gets on the court. Mike was not a perfect player either but we seem to think of him as one because he has “become legend” Kinda how Liam Neisen tells Christian bale in batmen that he can become a legend if that makes sense….. For those of you who are old enough to remember mike full career you know that mike missed plenty of game winners. There were also many questions about his ability to one day win a championship just like Lebron. Mike also needed the help of good teammates like lebron did but for some reason people seem to think that he was out there by himself. Again, this is the “Legend” status we bestow on mike because we a only viewing his legacy and what he meant to the game. If you put aside the lebron hate and look purely at his game, they man is a monster on the court!! Some people will just continue to blindly hate him and foolishly say that kobe is better. In reality there isn’t a single thing kobe can do on a basketball court that is superior to Lebron. Nothing!!!!!!! Nothing at all!!!!! Just get over it people, you are missing out on enjoying an all time great at work in his prime.

  • Da-Meat-Hook

    Roscoe, your logic is flawed. Making it to the finals at 23 is a greater accomplishment to getting swept in the first round at 23. You can’t compare the resume of someone who is approaching his prime to someone who is already retired. The fact that Bron, Howard, and Durant even made it to the finals as hands down the best players on their teams at 23 is an accomplishment, not a failure. Like I mentioned in a previous post, MJ didn’t even make it to the finals until he was almost 29 and at the apex of his career, big difference.

  • http://Slamonline.com Black Mamba

    I gotta ask, who is everybody’s top ten all time players.
    1.Jordan
    2.Magic
    3. Kobe
    4. Bird
    5. Kareem
    6. Erving
    7. Wilt
    8. West
    9. Shaq
    10. Duncan

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    Jordan
    Magic
    Kareem
    Bird
    Oscar
    Chamberlain
    West
    Dr. J
    Duncan
    Hakeem

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    1Jordan
    2Magic
    3russell
    4bird
    5kareem
    6shaq
    7kobe
    8olajuwon
    9west
    10thats tough because there are almost 50 players in the history of the game who i equally consider to deserve to be mentioned in an all time top 10.

  • http://Yahoo Headoffical

    Fuk u all haters Lebron James is the best player since michael Jordan and would crush Kobe Bryant in a game

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    @headofficial: 27 yr old kobe bryant vs 27 yr old lebron james in a team vs team matchup on equally talented squads? son, you never saw kobe playing back then if you think that way. jus sayin

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    10 “best” or 10 “greatest” – ?

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Oh and at no point in Kobe’s career did he have the affect on games that James does right now. Which is obvious if you are being objective

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    what about this idea: on a team of low talent, james is the better choice to make his team mates better than bryant. if both play on highly talented teams, bryant wouldve been the better choice during his prime to close out games and consistantly score big points when they are needed. at least so far, is we speak about a comparable sample saying james and kobe untill their 27th birthday. its unnecessary to say that james has the better overall game while kobe was maybe not the more efficient but more versatile scorer.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    “if we speak” not “is we speak” and “a more versatile…” damn

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    James definitely makes bad talent better while Kobe doesn’t. And James clearly works better with teammates. While Kobe may have been a better scorer, he was never a LeBron type of defender, he was never LeBron efficient, and he was never a LeBron like playmaker. I’m sorry but there is just no way you can convince me Kobe could help a team at any point in his career as much as James does now. The difference between them is Kobe has been at an elite level for 13 years. If LeBron keeps up what he’s doing for another 5 years he will have broken every record Kobe has except single game scoring records, and will have better career averages in every single drastically category (which is already true). I don’t know how many people would really choose Bryant at 27 over James st 27, but I’m sure it’s not the majority.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Sorry commenting from my phone, idk how drastically got in the middle of that sentence, it’s not supposed to be there

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    sure but come on, ball isnt only played on paper and statistics. james sure was/is the better athletes and can uses this nicely on the defensive end. kobe was also an over average and at times (when he wanted to) a great defender. its also clear that kobe could only guard other two guards while james could be used to guard multiple positions. but where is the problem, i mean jordan also guarded almost only other two guards and i dont think that this makes jordan an inferior defender compared to james. id take james defense over kobes tho, but not by thatmuch. kobe also played almost all of his prime in the triangle offense, not allowing him to dish many assists. jordans assist totals also decreased under this system and i wouldnt say that jordan didnt have court vision. just look at all his years and assist totals before he played that system. the main point was just, that before last years finals i wouldve taken a 27yr old kobe over a 27yr old james when its crunchtime. when it mattered the most, teams were able to take james drive away and he struggled to score / succeed. i didnt see many defensive schemes or single defenders (like eg marion in the 11 finals on james) that were able to shut kobe down or slow him down.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Zucotti Manicotti

    Lebron is the CHOSEN ONE!

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    James was 26 against Marion. That same defense would not have had the same effect this year. James is clearly a much much better player than he was a year ago. And Jordan guarded all 3 perImeter positions. Plus, no matter what offense Kobe played in, he never had relatively close to the passing ability as James does. LeBron is a superior defender, playmaker, and a much more efficient (although less volumous) scorer. If you value scoring over everything, including efficiency then that’s fine. But if you don’t, the answer is obviously James.

  • Ctk

    I know y’all know the history of the game n all… But how can u rank players u never watched on consistent basics ala Wilt,Russell,West,Oscar,n others

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    It’s definitely not a science. But as far as talking to people, reading, and watching, I’ve learned about as much as I can about how all those guys were as players and how they affected games. Not that I or any of us know everything there is to know, but we are educated, it’s not like we just look at stats and say oh (blah blah blah is greater than bleu bleu bleu)

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    nbk, you sir stick too much on facts. your lack of admiration for the beauty of the game and romantification of late game heroics makes me a little sad. i am also impressed by james play and allready said that he has the better overall game. i just have that feeling that people talk players worse when they are above their peak but still compete on a high level. kobe was never as dynamic as jordan was or lebron is, but his perfection of moves, arsenal of shots, smooth play in general (shot selection not so much) was a thing of beauty to watch. when james played, i was always impressed by his raw force combined with his court vision. but people criticising bryant let him look inferior to how he actually played and kobe fans exaggerate his play to how he actually played. i remember that little kind of magic that came with kobes play when he was on his peak which was almost jordan like but still the first and so far last time to see since mj retired. i remember people, commentaries like marv albert and guys on public platforms wondering if bryant was actually on the verge of surpassing jordan or maybe was allready better in regards to his perfection of skills. that is that little piece of magic that surrounded that guy, i think thats priceless and you cant really put it into numbers. maybe you could, if he wouldntve played in the triangle offense. james dominates games and impresses people antother way because he is a freak of nature like shaq. and it is too early to really put him into that jordan debate as he just entered his prime and won “only” one chip. bryant proved a little more yet than james did. but logically just because he is older. its a little too early to start that james / jordan debate. just imagine james gets hurt next season and returns as a roleplayer like tmac, penny or grant hill, then he wouldnt even surpass kobe / magic / bird on that “closest to jordan” discussion. let james add one more ring and id say he is better than kobe was. let him then add two or three more and hed earn the right to be named the second best after jordan. or maybe he really does what he said and adds not three not four not five not six, then we would all have to bow to the king and admit that he is the goat and we witnessed him playing. just dont see option three happening to soon yet

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Idk what any of that has to do with the conversation. We are talking about how good Kobe and LeBron are/were at the height of their abilities. I focus on facts because I care more about an entire game and winning than the beauty of it all. If we were talkin about Kobe at his best vs Iverson at his i’d be saying the same thing about Bryant as I am about James. I don let emotional feelings get I. The way of judging basketball players. I only care about winning, losing and the affect players have on them.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    i was referring to grace and the beauty of the game. i was allways was kids might consider as a kobe “hater”. i lost focus in my last post on what was my initial point. defenders were able to take parts of james game away to let him appear as if he choked at times. it was much more difficult for any defense to do that to kobe, not only in his prime, but also in his younger years. besides that james game is better, true. if he continues to play like last season we also (most likely) wont see any defense being able to shut or slow him down. but what you said about jordans defense: sometimes he could guard also point guards or small forwards, but for most of the time he stuck to the two guards. same with bryant.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Jordan stuck to two guards because he had Scottie Pippen (and Ron Harper later) next to him. Not Rick Fox, Devean George, Trevor Ariza, and Ron Artest. Jordan was a transcendent defender. Kobe was nothing close to that. You are talking like I’m bad mouthing Kobe for saying these things but I’m not. I’m not putting him down, I don’t think he’s not one of the greatest to ever play. He’s actually one of my favorite players to watch all-time, I just am not able to let what I like to see clowd my judgement on what is reality. Kobe got all defensive selections and recognition based mainly off of reputation. Jordan was like Deion Sanders, teams literally wouldn’t run plays on his side of the court (that is not a joke) – its the reason why he is one of only 3 wings to ever win DPOY. As for LeBron defensively we have witnessed his abilities and don’t really need to say much more than he is more versatile and dominant on that end than Kobe was.

  • http://slamonline.com The Philosopher

    Generally good discussion.
    In disagreement with a few points, but moving on.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    i remember jordans defense. to me that is also an important reason why jordan will stay the goat for many years to come and for now nobody really gets close to him, not even james. kobe might not be something close to jordan on the defensive end neither, but it didnt hurt the lakers when he guarded threes or point guards for some possessions. james and jordan are better defenders but bryant wasnt a defensive liability. i agree with all the other things you said apart from kobes all defensive selections based mainly off reputation. come on, i bet you saw him defending with your own eyes. that guy could play defense and he did that pretty well before father age knocked on his door. his only flaw was, that he sometimes underestimated inferior(compared to him) guards. but when it mattered, he normally shifted one gear up.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    He CAN play defense. Doesn’t mean he has been. Some of his all-defensive selections were justifiable. But they haven’t been for a couple years and he is still getting them. And again, I’m not saying kobe is a bad defender, but he’s not with Jordan in the best perimeter defenders ever conversation. James isn’t either, but he’s building quite a resume.

  • http://www.nba.com/knicks danpowers

    cosign that

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    Wow. “You stick too much on facts.” Exactly what else should people stick to? I think far too many people aren’t stuck on facts which is the problem.
    Also, Jordan became a great defensive player because people said he couldn’t. Think about that. People said a scoring champion couldn’t win championships. People said he couldn’t play defense because he was just a scorer. Look at what he did. Pretty remarkable.
    As for the 27 year old Kobe vs. 27 year old LeBron on similar squads….put 25 year old LeBron vs. Kobe in his prime on a similar squad and I say LeBron’s team wins. Put today’s LeBron against 27 year old Kobe individually and I said LeBron stops Kobe before Kobe stops LeBron and team vs. team I say LeBron’s team wins. I keep saying this. LeBron’s game is better suited to fit on any team regardless of the talent around him because of his passing ability. Kobe has never had it. It’s just a fact. At his best, Kobe was an assassin, deadly scorer, great defender. But LeBron’s rebounding, passing, and defense are better. LeBron had Mo Williams in an All-Star game. What player can you remember that Kobe has put into the All-Star game because of how good he makes him look?

  • Hibah

    LEBRON CAN WIN 100 CHAMPIONSHIPS, BUT HE WILL STILL NOT BE BETTER THAN JORDAN. EVER.
    MICHAEL JORDAN IS THE GREATEST OF ALL-TIME. THERE WILL NEVER BE A PLAYER BETTER THAN HIM..SO WHY ALL THESE COMPARISONS.

    IF YOU KNOW BASKETBALL, YOU KNOW MJ IS THE GREATEST AND ALWAYS WILL BE.

  • Drig

    27 year old LeBron is a more effective versatile player than a 27 year old Kobe ( who’s pretty versatile himself ). If I was building a team and had a great low post C, I’d take Kobe over Bron 8 times outta 10 because Kobe’s outside scoring back in the day was sick as hell. Also, Kobe was a lot more streaky in a good way back then. Get him 2-3 easy looks and he’d heat up for the entire game. @ByAnyMeansNecessary…….he was brought in as a replacement for Bosh. I think the replacements are the coach’s decision and if so, MikeB was the EC All-Star game coach that year. :|

  • http://www.xvideos.com nbk troll

    If lebron wins 100 champions that would mean he is a alien. An alien probably from space jam. Which somehow means he still wouldn’t be better than MJ.

  • http://www.libertyballers.com/2012/2/29/2832299/lebron-james-kobe-bryant-dwyane-wade-clutch-nba-playoffs-4th-quarter danpowers

    @ByAnyMeansNecessary: i aggree on almost everything you said. indeed facts or numbers are important to rank and analyze players. but if we dont know why and under what circumstances the numbers came together they are not really significant. i also said up there that lebron james makes a bad team better while bryant is smth like a luxury player who had his best value on great teams that gave him the freedom to do what he did and does best. whatever, you and nbk got me thinking twice and i checked back on clutch stats of both players as i wanted to bring up that kobe was more clutch than lebron used to be. but the opposite seems to be the case if we look at the numbers. lebron james put up better clutch stats in most categories since the year 2000. that was a suprise to me. my bad

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    I’d take LeBron now with Shaq from LA over Kobe and Shaq in LA. There would be no hesitation on LeBron’s part to get Shaq the ball. The biggest thing for me is LeBron’s playmaking ability. Imagine the pieces you could put around Shaq/LeBron. More shooters. We also have to discuss the fact that there would have been no battle of egos. A young Shaq would not have had any feuds with young LeBron. Similar playful personalities.
    @Drig If that’s true and Mo Williams was a replacement, there is a reason why he was even able to be in the discussion as a replacement…LeBron James.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    LeBron/young Shaq would have been as close to Magic/Kareem as you can get.

  • BallsDeep

    YAWN. Been here before. No one comes close to the GOAT. Anyway… game of thrones Season 2 was dope.
    Yeah MJ woulda scared the white walkers with his killer instinct.
    LBJ woulda scared nobody with his receding hair line… maybe a bush turkey, u got them there??
    Jus Sayin!!!!
    Balls Deep predicts BGriffin32 to become the premier PF in the game within 3 years. U heard it here first.
    See ya

  • Drig

    @ByAnyMeansNecessary…….that selection was straight up BS considering Rondo was playing at a level above Mo. It was a decision by BOTH MikeB and LBJ. Mo was taken as a replacement for Bosh when David Lee was much more deserving of it for what he meant to the Knicks that season.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Drig My point is without LeBron’s play, the Cavs wouldn’t have had the best record in the conference making it fair if they had two All-Stars.

  • Drig

    Oh. Agreed then.

  • ByAnyMeansNecessary

    @Drig My brother.

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    Kobe > mj , lebron>Kobe , bird >lebron

  • D-NICEST

    Is there anyway SLAM can re release the SLAM KICKS: D Wade Flight Ambassador Issue in Canada, in honour of him winning his 2nd NBA Title? The store near my house only had like two copies and by the time I came back with the money, they had either been bought or packed up.

  • msrita

    Ok nice to believe in your teammate. Kobe will surpass Jordan. Thanks Wade for believing in the Miami Heat. They are not winning 4 championships. Wait to see if Bosh will be charged with purgery by the end of September. Good look Miami Bosh told lie after lie after lie I counted at least 4 lies under oath

  • http://www.facebook.com/shooting.guard.319 Shooting Guard

    i hate these comparsons, lebron doesn’t have to surpass jordan or anybody else, lebron could retire today and live happily ever after, he’s making his own history

  • rhys

    shaq has more rings than west, wilt, erving, bird so he should be higher…apart from tht prtty good list

  • BostonBaller

    I’m an MJ guy and I say LBJ has a chance, especially with todays rules and the way they keep stats so loosely. You can’t touch anyone now and when LBJ rumbles down the lane like a heisman runner you can’t breathe on him. I’d love to see a bad boy type of D try to stop him and see what he’d do against a game long beating like only they gave. lol LBJ is a beast though.

  • Justin G

    pposse, I want to know what you’re smoking? The Heat team are better than the 90′s Bulls teams by a mile? You really think this team has the capability to get more than 72 wins do you? The mistake you’re making is looking at individual players and saying “Well, since this person is better it makes the team better”. Not even close. Which is better between Wade and Pippen is debatable but it wouldn’t matter. They’re not covering each other. Wade is being guarded by Jordan and Lebron is being guarded by Pippen. Intriguing matchups to say the least but Pippen could give Lebron fits in the half court sets. Kukoc was actually the third best player on that team and he came off the bench. Nobody on Miami’s bench is guarding him. I’d say the Bulls win 7 out of every 10 games against the Heat. Hell, even Luc Longley would have a field day against the Heat bigs

  • Justin G

    The only problem with that theory is that Lebron’s physique would help him more against a Bad Boys type of defense. Jordan didn’t start bulking up like that until the Detroit series’, Lebron is already there and then some

  • pposse

    I definately did not say that the Heat are better than the 90′s Bulls team! I said that the talent on their roster was better than the Bulls roster from the 90′s.

    My point was that Lebron losing in the finals, with such a stacked team automatically should discredit him from legit Jordan comparisons. Jordan was the ultimate ball player, leader, the ultimate everything to the game. No one is touching him in my book.

    As you can see by the Lakers current demise, talent is not everything. I do at time underrate Pippen and his prowess, I admit that…every once in a while i have to check videos on youtube and remember how much of a goon Pip was. Since this comment, i flip flopped again and would seriously take Pip over Wade.

    The whole purpose of my post was to discredit Lebron a little and not have him be compared to the GOAT because of his failures as a leader; I went a little overboard on discrediting MJ’s teammates, i must grabbed some potent ish.. if your talking about which team wins between the 90s Bulls and Miami, its definately the Bulls 7/10 times..

  • pposse

    are u visiting from another realm or something? this comment was from 5 months ago!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_RDSHS74AVXWD6BQYJWB5GCWBMA Joseph

    Another pointless and worthless comparison. I too want to know what you are smoking. This Miami team is not even close to the Bulls Championship teams, nor the Lakers and Celtic teams of the 80′s . All of the previously mentioned teams would smoke this Heat team. Go talk about something you actually know. I could mention other team that would crush your mighty Heat but we will leave it at that. What most of you fools don’t seem to understand is the rules changes that have affected this sport. Hell as much as I hated the Piston teams of the early 90′s, they would of Kicked the crap out of this Miami team. Get Real! ….and Wade better than Pippen, are you kidding me. Public opinion doesn’t mean anything. Your a fool!!!!!

  • jama

    There’s a simple reason why Lebron will not be considered the best ever. It’s because the man is a small forward and because of his size he doesn’t have the insane ball handling or the footwork of MJ or Kobe.

    I mean his numbers are awesome and he is a spectacle to watch, but on those two things he can never be better than MJ and Kobe.

  • CJ Fromuptown

    Ok we always talk rings and Bill Russell has more than all them and he isn’t even on this top 10 list. G.O.A.T is opinionated and subjective; it’s not based on stats so nobody will ever surpass MJ even if they best his numbers…MJ’s swagger made him the G.O.A.T along with his skill and killer instinct…Talk trash to him and he would make you eat your words

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