Thursday, February 16, 2017

The Debate - Michael Jordan Vs. LeBron James

The debate that everyone hates, but the debate that is becoming a reality. As fans and writers of the sporting world, we all have our opinions and that's what makes these debates and being a sports fan so interesting. The passion we have for our teams, players, and generations is a truly spectacular thing to see. The reason this article is something I want to hit on is because of some of the false and biased reasoning that fans tend to have. The facts are cemented in the history books so we can pull them out and look at the big picture of reality. The truth is I know who my favorite player is and who I think is the greatest basketball player of all time. We all have different criteria for this is why this person and that person is the greatest. It should be a combination of factors because taking statistics, shots, championships, years played, and everything else can't determine the greatest. Very few consider Bill Russell the greatest who had 11 championships or Kareem Abdul-Jabbar who is the all-time leading scoring. I know those guys are in the conversation occasionally but it's not very often you hear those names. What about a guy like Oscar Robertson who averaged a triple-double for an entire season? The fact is that we have to account difference aspects and eras of the game to truly determine the greatest player to play. In the end, no facts or statistics will change the mind of some because we all have an opinion as a sports fan. So below I want to demonstrate some of the opinonsI have read that make sense but either not completely accurate or have no legs to stand on.

Michael Jordan Never Lost a Finals - This is a completely true statement. The reason I have this on the list though is because at age 32 Michael Jordan had played in 3 finals and won both. LeBron James at the age of 32 has been to 7 and won 3. The argument will make more sense if LeBron doesn't win 3 more titles, but how can he be penalized if ends up with 6 and went there 10 or 11 times? Wouldn't that mean Jordan wasn't good enough to make it to as many? Even if he doesn't win anymore and keeps getting to the finals means he was at least good enough to get there more than Jordan.

Michael Jordan Didn't Need Superteam to Win - This is only true to a certain point because LeBron had to chase a title because his team wouldn't get him help.The first time around LeBron had no other Hall of Fame players unless you count an old Shaq who wasn't nearly the same player. Jordan only won the championships with Pippen there. The second 3peat consisted of 3 Hall of Famers. How many teams in history have only had 1 hall of fame player and win the title? I believe if you count the guys who are eligible for the Hall of Fame that the number is 3 teams and all of them before 1980.

LeBron James Flops and Jordan Didn't -

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit C

LeBron Came Out of High School So His Stats Will Be Better - This one is a fact, but why don't we take into account that Jordan wasn't good enough to come out of High School? He was ready to be in the NBA at that time. LeBron had the most hype of anyone in High School and he has actually surpassed expectations. LeBron has been in the league 1 year less than Jordan at the time of this writing and he keeps moving up the list of the greats.LeBron is the only player to be top 20 in assists, points, and steals. He put those numbers up in 1 year less then Jordan put his numbers. By the time he is done, LeBron will lead Jordan in most statistical categories. It doesn't hurt LeBron came out of High School but let's not penalize him for his longevity and his ability out of High School when Jordan wasn't at that level and needed college.

This isn't all of them and there will be plenty more that will be added to this article, but I didn't state anything here that wasn't a factual argument. The world of social media is what makes the hate for LeBron so different than the hate for many players before this generation. LeBron has done plenty of wrong things and made wrong decisions but everyone has. LeBron James haters hate "The Decision", the same decision that helped raise 6 million for charity. The LeBron haters hate him because he is whiny, but isn't it the era we live in now? The fact that everyone wants a foul call or argue a foul call on every single play. The argument will continue as long as LeBron is playing and if he passes Jordan as the greatest of all time only time will tell, but as the discussion continues let's realize reality and show respect to two legends of the game. The story will be written whatever way we want it to be because the fans help make the legends and cement their legendary status. Air Jordan or King James it's your pick?

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