A debate that has long divided not only basketball fans, but also the current and former stars of the game is who is the best NBA player of all time, Michael Jordan or LeBron James? While opinions about superstar athletes may change because Jordan has not played in years and James is still in the league, it is always fun to visit this topic and compare his incredible achievements on the court.
Each generation has that special player that can be considered great. Jordan was for his generation and James is that today. So who will face your team and trust you to perform better under pressure? Here is a look at their impressive numbers side by side and what other NBA stars have to say about the great debate.
No other player considered above them
Some people will try to argue that neither of these two types is the best to play the game. Instead, they will choose Wilt Chamberlain, Bill Russell, Larry Bird or Magic Johnson.
While some of their cases may be strong, most people believe that it’s just Jordan or James, nobody else.
Next: James’ former teammate puts him in the same category as MJ, but …
Dwyane Wade favors Jordan over James
James’ former teammate, Dwyane Wade, admitted that he would still take Jordan for James, but acknowledges that James has moved into the same category as the Hall of Fame.
“[James] is one of the best players in the game, possibly the best,” Wade said. “I prefer Michael Jordan … So they are one and two of the best players of all time and I have the opportunity to play against one of them.”
Next: James’ current teammate feels different.
J.R. Smith believes James has already passed Jordan
If you ask J.R. Smith, James’s current teammate, the same question about who is better, you will get a totally different answer because Smith believes that the King has already outdistanced Jordan. Smith’s response came after another former star, Ray Allen, opined that Jordan was “by far” the best.
“Absolutely not,” said Smith “Obviously, do not get me wrong, grow up, obviously, and I have the jersey tattooed on my stomach, MJ was the best of all time, in my opinion, until two years ago.”
Next: Jordan’s old teammate weighs.
Scottie Pippen chooses Jordan without hesitation
Some of Jordan’s former teammates have also intervened in this debate, including Scottie Pippen, who has no time to choose James over Jordan. “Michael Jordan was the best footwear of all time in our game, there’s no question about that,” said Pippen.
And for anyone who still doubts that, he took his case further and said that the two should not even be compared.
Both play two different positions. The way in which LeBron James plays? Michael Jordan was never asked to play that way. Because I took that away from him. I was the point to follow. I was the facilitator Michael Jordan was an annotator. He was a defender. He played the game as complete as LeBron James did when he needed it. But they asked him to score the ball and that was great … There was no game where he played where he would choose LeBron James over Michael Jordan. Not if I’m trying to win.
Next: This NBA legend got excited talking about who had more pressure on them.
Kevin Garnett has made up his mind about who the GOAT is
Minnesota Timberwolves and Boston Celtics legend Kevin Garnett could not just sit back and listen to the King vs. Debate MJ and those who dealt with more pressure and criticism without intervening and explaining why he thinks Jordan was the HORSE.
Michael Jordan was revered as a machine. Really? You saw how hard I wanted it. You saw how hard it was going. And this is with Magic and Bird still in the league! When basketball was about to lose it. When we had addicts. When we had boys who came to the camp with overweight. Who do you think started arriving at the camp in shape ready for the first day?
Next: For the numbers
How do they compare one against the other under pressure?
Of course, to have an adequate debate, we must analyze the registers, the rings and the general achievements. Jordan was the MVP of the league five times. James has received the honor four times (so far).
Each of them was named All-Star 14 times and James is probably named one more times. They also both have two Olympic gold medals. And when it comes to the final pressure of the NBA Finals, Jordan went to six and won all six. LBJ has been in eight and won three (so far).
So, who is better? Jordan because he has won more championships or James because he has not yet finished increasing his numbers.
Next: The winner is …
Jordan wins, but not with the millennials
When considering who you would want on your team, who is better under pressure and who is the best, it all boils down to something as simple as age.
A good portion of millennials choose James because they were too young to remember Jordan’s greatness or, in some cases, they were not even born when he played. Therefore, what they are witnessing today of the Cavs star seems something that had never been done before.
However, for those who remember Jordan’s career they have seen this show before, when he dominated the sport and do not hesitate in his decision that he is the best.