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Out Of Bounds: Lebron is Better Than Jordan (Extra Long Read)

mikeyvthedon
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surve

I have left this post alone as far as pluses and negs other than giving your first post a plus for the work you put into it. Man, you are leaving things out, though. Acting like nothing changed with the Bulls is garbage. They did not win the title. Who cares if they lost two fewer games? They were barely above .500 that next season until Michael helped turn things around.

Also, how do Michael's total pale in comparison to LeBron's again? The age thing of course works in your favors, but who cares about totals when in actuality they have the exact same amount of rings at the same age? Not to mention, Michael Jordan did what I told you he did against the Pistons, with LeBron not coming close to doing that with the Celts in 2010 and Mavs in 2011. Man, that is just an argument that makes very little sense.

Michael also played in a league with fewer teams and where there were MANY teams that got into the play-offs with losing records. Plus, how was it Michael's fault his team went 9-9 in 18 games he played during his second season, than made the play-offs at 30-52? Just the luck of the draw. Going by totals as opposed to averages is a good way to ignore a number of things. Like the fact that Michael had insane efficiency (even more so than LeBron) and shot better.

Michael's teams lost in the first round every year his team finished with a losing record. LeBron's first season in the play-off's, he played more games than Michael's first three seasons. I think it is safe to say, his team in his third season was indeed better than any of Michael's first three teams. Also, realize that at the same age, Michael was averaging more assists per game (7.1 to 6.7).

The only thing Michael pales in comparison through his first 9 seasons is rebounding, with 2 less per game. However, think his 6 more points per game and better shooting sort of make up for it. That is in 4 fewer play-off games as opposed 45. If you think that comparison makes sense, that is on you. It is not LeBron's fault Michael came into the league later, but how can you fault people for comparing them at a level where they are closer in games played as far as totals?

LeBron will obviously have people look at things differently due to Michael Jordan's unorthodox career path (retirements, etc), just to state that LeBron's play-off totals make him more of a winner than Michael Jordan or a better player does not really flow. It is not bias as much as people flat out not accepting your reasoning behind your claims. As much as people may have their blinders on when it comes to Michael Jordan being anything less than the best, or even disliking LeBron, your reasoning behind this leaves a lot to be desired.

mikeyvthedon
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I am a huge fan of LeBron James, think that most people know that. The thing is, you do indeed leave some things out. Yes, the team did not get much worse without Michael Jordan after his first retirement. Still, the addition of Pete Myers and Toni Kukoc were pretty big, to a team with guys from a core of three championship WINNING teams who were still relatively young. Cleveland lost LeBron, Shaq, Ilgauskas and Delonte West. If you recall, LeBron and Delonte were pretty much the only two guys playing defense in the 2010 play-offs for Cleveland.

Magic was indeed a great winner, but was he any greater than Bill Russell? Plus, was Oscar Robertson not a relative precursor? The only difference between Oscar and Magic in their time frames was when each of them played with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. I feel like Oscar, Magic and LeBron are in the same relative mold, just not really sure if you can put them with Michael Jordan.

Here is what you left out about Michael Jordan:

  • He never averaged less than 29.3 ppg in a single play-off season (never less than 30 after his rookie year)
  • He was a tremendous defender (Magic was not a slouch, just not even close to the individual defender Michael was, or LeBron for that matter)
  • The Bulls struggled mightily to score without Michael there. No one is questioning that LeBron never had anyone close to a Scottie Pippen before joining Miami, but Scottie never really "carried" a team. He pouted when Toni Kukoc got the last shot instead of him in 1994 against the Knicks. Yes, Pippen sat on the bench and pouted, while Kukoc indeed sank the game winner. Now, Scottie sacrificed a lot and obviously felt like he should have his chance to win the game. Still, I know that Michael Jordan, while he wanted the ball at the end of the game, would make the right play for his team more often than not. Much like LeBron tends to. We remember "the shot" at North Carolina and his push-off of Bryon Russell, but Michael was not Kobe Bryant in that he would take whatever ridiculous shot possible to try and get that game winner. Lets just say, Scottie Pippen was not the same without Michael Jordan to kick him in the butt every now and than.
  • You left out the Bulls record in 1994-95 before Michael Jordan was their. It was 34-31. They went 13-4 over Michael's last 17 games. They had lost Horace Grant and Bill Cartwright, were breaking in some new players. Still, things were not going to well before old #45 turned the team around a bit. So, say Scottie helped them contend one year after, but odds are that it would have been a much different story had Michael Jordan not come back to make the Bulls INSANELY dominant from 1996-98. Dennis Rodman was a major factor, other pieces also, but Michael Jordan was the key as he was indeed SO much better than anyone else in basketball.
  • To add to my last point, Michael Jordan was unquestionably the games best scorer. I would like to think that while Magic Johnson was indeed an incredible All-Around player, with Larry Bird being much of the same, Michael at age 23 was in the conversation as the best player in the league (as was LeBron, I suppose). Yet, I would also like to feel Michael's lack of MVP trophies by age 27 was kind of a joke. I believe Michael Jordan had a 6 year span (1988-93) where he indeed should have won the MVP (http://nbadraft.net/forum/mvp-4). Arguably, he could have even won the MVP the season before. One could argue LeBron maybe could have 4 in a row (though I give him his three and Derrick Rose his), just realize Michael could have won 9. His winning 5 is a tad ridiculous in my mind.
  • I agree with Y2G that you saying LeBron was well ahead of Michael Jordan at 27 statistically is incredibly flawed. Of course he is! He played two more seasons! Still, while he may be ahead in totals (duh), he is not in, well, statistical averages. Michael Jordan averages at 27 were 32.6 ppg, 6.3 rpg, 5.9 apg, 1.1 bpg and 2.8 spg, all on 52% FG/84.9% FT. Give LeBron one point in the rebounds and assist columns, five points less in scoring at a similar age (Not to mention 48.3%/74.6%).
  • While I know it is not necessarily exact science as far as comparing them after 9 years as opposed to being the same age, if you look at Michael's 9 year totals, he is indeed well ahead of LeBron. He played 32 fewer games and was well ahead of LeBron in points, steals and blocked shots (not to mention FG% and FT%).
  • Than, LOOK AT THE MANS PLAY-OFF NUMBERS! Not trying to put you down, just surprised this kind of was overlooked. I have always disagreed with people who said LeBron has been disappointing in the play-offs. He has in a couple games and series, but he has been fairly fantastic. Still, Michael Jordan was phenomenal in the post-season. At his first retirement: 34.7 ppg, 6.7 rpg and 6.6 apg. If that is not carrying a team on your back, I do not know what is. LeBron had one season with those insane numbers (that loss to the Magic in 2009), just the let downs the two years after are not something you see from Michael. It is not something that is not semi-redeemable with future performances (such as this year), just something Michael has over EVERYONE. Plus, check Mike's play-off shooting #'s. 50/35/83 at first retirement, kind of blow LeBron's out of the water.

I think you did a good job and you obviously feel passionately about this subject (though I do recall your, "It's ok to hate LeBron and Eddy Curry, but how can you dislike everyone else" montage). I just feel like LeBron has a ways to go to be considered better than Michael or Magic. He did not come into the circumstances either player was fortunate enough to be a part of, which has made many question his competitive desire and even some writing him off as not being in their class due to his decision.

Surve, I get that you are probably older than us, but I am fairly sure you can remember that a majority of people indeed believed Michael Jordan was the best player in NBA history after his first 9 seasons in the league. Their had never been a player who had been as individually dominant matched with team success, especially without having an impact player in the middle (something Magic Johnson always had with Kareem, minus Game 6 rookie year). I semi-understand where you are coming from, just felt like you left out some factors in this discussion. As much of a winner as Magic was, Jordan won more with less.

Yes, Magic was a great winner, he also managed to stumble onto a team with a 5 time MVP and get another first pick after they won a championship in 1982 (with another former MVP, Bob McAdoo, coming off of the bench). Oh, did I mention he was in Los Angeles, a place not to many people turn down as a team or free agency destination. With Jerry West robbing people blind to build a roster that was stacked to the gills. No question the Lakers would not have been as great without Magic, just know that he had help Michael Jordan only could have dreamed of on his first few years with the Bulls. Michael Jordan also never had anyone else on his team win Finals MVP (Magic had Kareem and Worthy). Magic was unique and incredible, it is just really difficult for me to not think that Michael Jordan was not the better player from a career stand point by a pretty nice margin. Not to mention, LeBron with all of his greatness and accomplishment over his first 9 seasons, still has a ways to go to catch up with these guys.

surve
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there's ma boy! this is getting fun now.

I dont really like to use individual stats on this but I have touched on them, but lets do this.

"He never averaged less than 29.3 ppg in a single play-off season (never less than 30 after his rookie year)"

The notion that Lebron is a post season loser and MJ is a post season winner is very skewed. Again, its based on team makeup and a lot of luck. But from pure stat perspective....

Lebron's playoff totals at age 27

  • points - 3,275 (MJ 1,896)
  • assists - 772 (MJ 355)
  • rebounds 998 (MJ 368)
  • steals - 195 (MJ 135)
  • blocks - 109 (MJ 59)

yeah yeah, I know, he came straight out of HS, so I guess that should count against him.....dont like that logic.

here is where I blow that out of the water. In Lebron's first 9 years in the league, he failed to make postseason TWICE. So MJ has a 2 year lead on him because MJ made postseason every year in Chicago. 3 times with a losing regular season record...goes to show how weak the divisions were. (yet Lebron failed to make the postseason one year with a WINNING RECORD!)

Scottie never "carried" a team? Like hell he didnt. Say man, didnt you just read that I said he only lost 2 games more without Jordan that year and it was the same year he had his best season? It was the same year he became one of only two players at the time to lead their team in all major stat catagories! Then, they only missed the conference finals by 1 game! OMG. If thats not carrying a team I dont know what is.

"You left out the Bulls record in 1994-95 before Michael Jordan was their. It was 34-31. They went 13-4 over Michael's last 17 games. They had lost Horace Grant and Bill Cartwright, were breaking in some new players." The key is Horace Grant. Grant was a huge part of winning so much so that they had to go out and get the best rebounder of all time to replace him on their championship runs. Remember, Grant became an All Star while Jordan was AWAY!

I appreciate your input on this though, you are one of my favorite posters. For the record, when I said "hate Lebron and Eddy Curry" I didnt mean that I hate him, just that people are going to hate the guy for whatever reason, even though he really hasnt shown anything that insists he is a bad guy by any stretch. I love Lebron. The fact is though, more people love Michael, even those that didnt see him play live, and Lebron has been villified horribly and to an unfair extent. Mainly due to the Decision and pre-season victory celebration.

Again, my argument is not that Lebron is greater than Michael or even Magic for that matter, but that he is better because if you talk about winning, he has done MUCH more with MUCH less. Its just unfortunate that people only look at titles as the main bone of contention.

mikeyvthedon
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"Like hell he didn't"

Surve, you can call that team Scottie's. Just know that it is REALLY hard to give Scottie all of the credit that you seemingly are with that Knicks series in the balance. The flaw with just focusing on regular season wins and not valuing championships is that it leaves out a large part of why one plays basketball. When I think of teams that are great, those are championship teams. Scottie never took that extra step without Michael. Imagine if Michael Jordan or LeBron James did what Scottie Pippen did in that Knicks series? Would they ever live it down?

How can you go so crazy defending Scottie as carrying a team without mentioning that little factoid? See, you are leaving out little things that are a BIG DEAL. Yes, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, Patrick Ewing, John Stockton and Dominique Wilkins were all GREAT players. They helped their teams win a lot of games. Still, none of them were as good as Michael Jordan. He had that extra bit of competitive fire that helped his teams get to that level. When we talk about championships, we know they are great teams. Still, Michael Jordan's level of greatness in getting these guys to where they were, do you think Scottie could have done that? Well, you may, but he didn't.

Had Magic never beaten Larry Bird in the NBA Finals, Larry always having that one over him, would this not have given Larry a major competitive edge when talking about All-Time greats? Yeah, Magic would have college, but did Larry Bird not play that exact same crucial role that Magic did? Did Larry Bird ever miss the play-offs? Did Larry Bird's team not do considerably worse than either the Bulls or Lakers two years after his retirement? These guys were both winners.

Yet, neither were the individual force that Michael Jordan was and I am sorry to say, Michael having that one more ring matters. His having two three-peats matters. His leading the NBA in scoring 10 times and being much better than anyone he played with matters. MUCH more than Scottie Pippen doing everything he did and the Bulls not winning a championship (with him sitting on the bench at the end of Game 3 of the conference semis). Perserverance and coming up when it matters the most matters. This is why one can't fault LeBron for not winning rings, yet they can point out that his doing so matters one hell of a lot more than leading bad teams to regular season success.

LeBron's circumstance may play a large part in why he is not considered as great as Michael Jordan, and I feel that is the way things work. If Magic Johnson or Michael Jordan were drafted by the Cavs, odds are they would have been in the same boat. They were not. If Michael never won championship rings, he might not be considered as great as he is. He did. This combination of his individual dominance and team success of the scale of NBA history plays an enormous factor in why he is considered the greatest player of all time.

People have been incredibly hard on LeBron, he has accomplished a great deal and his teams success over the past 4 seasons is obvious. Still, his team winning a huge number of regular season games does so much less for me than his having won a ring this season. It is the same as saying that due to the poor supporting casts of Grant Hill, Tracy McGrady or Vince Carter in their primes they should still be on the level of a Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan. For as much as that was considered at the time (it was to an extent), does it not seem silly now? Ridiculous? I certainly think so.

If you are a great player, than you will more than likely be given credit as such. Yet, the best players in history are usually ones who have led their teams to tremendous heights and in one way or another, perservered. Scottie Pippen never was a LEADER of a championship team and his actions during that Bulls/Knicks series, no matter how close they came, make it hard for me to say he "carried" that team. Plenty of players have carried teams to not winning championships, maybe not all with leading their team in every statistical category, just know that they have also not done so while refusing to enter the game due to them not getting the ball. I understand Scottie probably regrets doing so, just a HUGE factor in why I think their is a flaw in your lauding of Pippen for his work the year after Michael left.

Surve, in the end, I am not even sure you believe your own argument. I see the purpose of this, their may be reasoning behind it and you put a good deal of work into it. We have no idea how Michael Jordan would have done in LeBron's shoes. We also have no idea about the reverse. One thing we do know is that Michael Jordan was WAY better than anyone in the league for about 10 years. He won 6 rings as an individually dominant player, LeBron has won one. Winning championship rings may not be the entire argument. However, it gives a lot of strength to ones argument and to say LeBron's regular season success on bad Cleveland teams separates him from Michael Jordan at similar points in their career seems heavily flawed. Especially seeing that LeBron is playing on a team with a player who actually led his team to a championship and a perennial All-Star. The Bulls may have had more depth, just not the same fire power up top, even with Dwyane Wade's bum knee and Bosh's pulled abs.

surve
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"It is the same as saying

"It is the same as saying that due to the poor supporting casts of Grant Hill, Tracy McGrady or Vince Carter in their primes they should still be on the level of a Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan."

Absolutely, but here is where you are missing my point. Grant Hill would definitely be on that level had he not been injured because he was winning with terrible cast. He made a turnaround in a franchise, from winner to loser.

The same could possibly be said about T-Mac had he been healthy...but he wasnt....and when he was I dont remember T-Mac being that much of an impact on winning. The Magic didnt really improve when he came there, they only won like 2 extra games then the next season they lost 2 extra games. On top of that the Raptors didnt get any worse when he left.

Vince? See this is where you are not hearing me at. Vince didnt have an impact on winning. The only time Vince was had an impact was when he first got to Toronto. When he went to Jersey, they didnt improve and actually went down when he was their star. JKidd is the player that impacted the wins and losses in Jersey. Deron Williams didnt impact the win column either. Thats why I stated in a post recently that as talented as he is, to me, he is not better than Rondo, Westbrook, Rose, CP3, at the present time.....not that he wasnt before or wont be in the future, but this year, Deron Williams was a stat guy....not a wins guy.

Grant Hill, winner. Vince and T-Mac, there was no evidence to support them. And T-Mac and Vince are two of my top 10 favorites of all time.

Flashback, remember where I argued that Vince may have done enough to get in the Hall? Well, from individual stats, I believe he has done enough, but as a winner, absolutely not.

If you read carefully, you will see where I am going with this.

mikeyvthedon
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Don't see it

Dude, the Grant Hill argument is completely flawed. You almost allude to it yourself, lol ("from winner to loser", guess you meant the other way around). Grant helped the Pistons quite a bit, had amazing All-Around numbers and was a deserving perennial All-Star. Grant never advanced past the first round of the play-offs in Detroit. Saying Vince Carter made no difference in the Raptors winning is absolute, utter, bull$hit. He was crucial.

All of those guys made their team better, just none at the level of a championship contender. They may not have had the supporting casts or key players, but I truly believe they were flat out not as good as a Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant or LeBron James. Saying Deron Williams was not a wins guys is cr@p as well. Led his team to a conference final, dude.

Vince Carter was on a New Jersey team without any viable 4 or 5. No team wins without that. How can you say circumstance has no say in this deal? Deron Williams went to a horribly bad team, with injuries. To say Rondo or whoever is better for not being traded to an awful team is flawed. Not everyone goes to New Jersey with everyone healthy and some nice additions like Jason Kidd did. Along with having the East be absolutely terrible. If you say Deron Williams is just a stats guy does not hold a lot when one considers he did indeed lead his team to a number of wins beforehand. He had help, much like he has not with New Jersey since he has arrived.

mikeyvthedon
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About Vince Carter

I will say, Vince never lived up to his (vast) potential. However, I remembered you saying "Vince didn't have an impact on winning." You than said:

The only time Vince was had an impact was when he first got to Toronto. When he went to Jersey, they didnt improve and actually went down when he was their star. JKidd is the player that impacted the wins and losses in Jersey.

Well, the Nets actually were 9-16 before they traded for Vince. They only had Jason Kidd for 9 games, went 5-4. Nonetheless, Vince went 33-24 in those remaining games. The next season, the Nets went 49-30 with Vince in the line-up, losing the 3 games he missed. Their front court was led by a 22-year old Nenad Krstic (solid scorer, poor rebounder), Jason Collins (averaging 4.8 ppg per 36 minutes and not enough rebounds, while playing about 27 minutes per game. Yikes) and a 39-year old uncle Cliffy Robinson.

Seems like Vince may not have led them to the Finals (they lost in 5 to the eventual NBA Champion Heat that 2006), but did he make them worse? Seems not. See, that is doing research and providing facts. I am not saying Jason Kidd was not integral in them winning, or that Richard Jefferson did not help. What I am saying is, the East had changed a bit and so had the Nets team. They lost some vital pieces, particularly in the front court. Still, Vince helped them do better than they would have otherwise. Not to mention, he was incredibly impactful on his first three Raptors seasons. Just thought of this, wanted to point it out if you ever come back and look at this thread.

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Jordan is the greatest basketball

player ever. Lebron can be best individual player, most talented, whatever. We only care about who is the best ever. That's Michael Jordan, not Queen James. He can have 2nd best though.

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You were right

That was a long read.

Lebron may be the most talented bball player of all time (Magic), but he is not the best, or greatest or w/e you want to call it. He has a LOT of choke moments to overcome before he's the GOAT.

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@surve Good read, but like it

@surve

Good read, but like it was pointed out above by JoeWolf1, Y2G and even more by mikeyvthedon , you left out a lot about Michael Jordan in order to prove your point.

I felt like you had a lot of one sided arguments. IF we stack both of these players up fairly and present equal arguments, I think it's clear that Jordan is at the top.

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Thanks. And yes, Jordan is at

Thanks.

And yes, Jordan is at the top, in terms of accomplishments, in terms of averages, in terms of accolades and greatness. Lebron is not that far off though. I just believe that impacting the health of a franchise, Lebron means more and is a better player....so in a franchise draft, he would be the guy I would pick 1st and Magic 2nd.

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You may have already

You may have already mentioned this, but what evidence do you have that LeBron James is better at impacting the health of a franchise than Michael Jordan? Like what are you using to determine that? I'd like to know the measurables...

Because when I think about the standard of a player being able to impact the health of a franchise in regular season wins, playoff wins, championships, popularity, etc... I can't think of anybody better than Jordan.

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Regular season wins, I showed

Regular season wins, I showed that Lebron impacted the plus win column, also he only played on one losing team. Jordan played on 5. Playoff wins, Lebron is there. Popularity? Well, Cleveland is not the large market that Chicago is, yet Lebron managed to become the most popular player in the world post Jordan. In a time where guys like Dwight and Shaq seek out huge markets to support their endorsements, Lebron generated his own market. Cleveland will never be as popular as they were during Lebron's tenure. They are not the Lakers or the Celtics.

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I agree.with you surve lebron

I agree.with you surve lebron is the best player ever, but for those of you judging greatest player of all time by individual accolades, then russell and to a lesser extent wilt should be strongly.considered for.the.top spot... russell has eleven titles and wilt tore up.record books and has titles also

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I've been saying that Lebron

I've been saying that Lebron would be the G.O.A.T when he's done and got slandered.. old heads can't get over Jordan's greatness and can't see new greatness... All you need to know is Lebron AT 27 (27) is legitly being compared to Jordan and he has ATLEAST 5 year mvp caliber seasons left in him.. but im sleep ZzzZzzZzz

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The quote

Quote from Jordan: "I thought of myself first, the team second. I always wanted my teams to be successful. But I wanted to be the main cause." - The Jordan Rules

Well, was he not? The guy had the league on lock down. This was an incredibly competitive time in both conferences and the Bulls were just dominant teams. How does Michael Jordan's statistical impact not play a huge part in this? He was so incredibly efficient as a player, in every facet of the game. Like LeBron, like Magic, just doing it 6 times will never a question of being the man. I just think saying that LeBron would win more than Michael in a similar situation is something I am not sure I would say. It is possible, but I am not even close to as certain as you seem to be.

If Michael Jordan had never had Scottie Pippen or Horace Grant, he may not have won championships. Can't you now say the exact same thing about LeBron without Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh? He certainly did not seem to be getting closer in Cleveland. I thought it was incredible that he got those 2007 Cavs to the Finals, but that team was indeed the worst team in NBA Finals history (playing like it as well).

Also realize that while LeBron may have had more regular season wins than Michael during this time, does play-off success not matter? LeBron lost to stacked teams, so did Michael with those Detroit teams. LeBron eventually beat Boston, Michael eventually beat Detroit. LeBron has had mega play-off series and games, just he had those moments where you felt he could have done more. Michael never had those. He pushed himself to the furthest limit possible to win.

I feel this year LeBron did the same. He did the same in 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2012. Yet, you will see I am missing a couple of years. LeBron may not have pulled a Scottie Pippen, and I reject the notion that he dogged it. Still, were these two years not horribly disappointing performances from LeBron? He was not aggressive, he was not himself and he did not go down firing. If he had, than I think I may not have much of an argument against him not being at the point of Michael Jordan as much as doing whatever it takes to help your team win. Even when Jordan lost, you could say anything you want besides him going all out and being his usual unstoppable self. The Pistons may have beat Jordan, but he still went crazy. Can't say the same for Bron against the Celts in 2010 and the Mavs in 2011. LeBron has a ways to go before being at that point, I have to say.

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"If Michael Jordan had never

"If Michael Jordan had never had Scottie Pippen or Horace Grant, he may not have won championships. Can't you now say the exact same thing about LeBron without Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh?"

Absolutely not, Lebron was going to win regardless. Why are you accusing me of leaving stuff out when you do the same? We have seen what Lebron's teams were like without Wade and Bosh and we have seen MJ's teams without Pip and Grant. We actually have proof that we can rely on. The teams are not even close. Like I said. Jordan didnt play on a winning team without Pippen.

None of the Pippen-less Bulls team would stand a chance against the 60 plus win Cavaliers teams...to think so is really delusional. You really honestly believe that Jordan's 40 win team would take out Lebron's 66 win team in the Playoffs??? Come on, stop it.

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Where did I say that?

Michael's 40 win team would beat LeBron's 66 win team? Man, I am a huge LeBron James fan and I believed he might have won a championship without Wade or Bosh. How can you say he absolutely would have won without them, though? Man, they barely won this year, lol. Also, lets realize that the 66 win team and 61 win team went to the Conference Finals and Semi-Finals. Michael's two teams before his 7th season went to the Conference Finals against Detroit, who won the championship both years they beat the Bulls.

Also, surve, it is funny that you think LeBron going 66-16 in 2009 (his 6th season) with Cleveland is the same as Michael Jordan going 40-42 in 1987 (his 3rd season) with the Bulls. That may not be leaving something out, but it is not exactly paralleling the similar points in their age which you seemingly were trying to do. Do not make it look like I am making a point I did not even come close to making. All I am stating is, you do not have CONCRETE evidence to make LeBron more valuable to team success than Michael Jordan. Not with the Scottie Pippen thing and definitely not with his earlier career.

Are you saying that Michael Jordan's team in 1987 would have been 66-16 with LeBron James? Or even, less drastically, better if LeBron had played there at a similar stage? Surve, major flaw in logic on that one. To me, Michael's record those seasons means so incredibly little when you think about the fact that his teams in 1988-89 and 1989-90 finished in the same place as LeBron's team finished in 2008-09. Can you gurantee that LeBron's 66-16 team would have beaten those two Bulls teams?

I get it, LeBron played with even less than Michael in Cleveland. He had better regular season records, no Scottie Pippen. His team did not win championships. Had he stayed in Cleveland, no gurantee they would have. He had at least one incredibly disappointing end of the year play-off series against Boston. Much like the point I am trying to make about Pippen's let down in 1994, LeBron had one as well that should make one question about whether he all in all would have done more to create a winning environment than a player even you classify as the greatest of All-Time.

I honestly do not know if the Bulls teams would be better had LeBron been on them, but I certainly would not state it in concrete. I also do not know how well Michael would have done in Cleveland. I will say that their were indeed fewer teams in Michael's era which made the league much more competitive and did not allow the conference slant Cleveland had yet could still not overcome during LeBron's last two seasons winning a great amount of regular season games. To say that LeBron meant more leaving 2010 Cleveland as compared to Michael leaving the Bulls in 1993, well that is obvious. Yet, how is it not obvious that Michael also led them to a place the three years before LeBron had never come close to? If you count 2007 as close, well that is your opinion. I have a feeling that LeBron does not even count 2007 as close. It was an accomplishment, just not exactly showing the Cavs to be title contenders (as the next three seasons proved).

So, to think that Michael Jordan, because he had Scottie Pippen, needed Scottie Pippen to have the regular season success that LeBron James had is just as delusional. The fact is, he did have him, but that does not necessarily mean that the Bulls would not have acquired other pieces to make them formidable. Scottie Pippen was a great player, just do not make it seem like Michael would still not have been able to win in some other format just because of the relatively poor teams he had before hand. His Bulls team won 50 games when Scottie was a rookie averaging 7.9 ppg. I just do not think that LeBron winning 66 games and finishing the same spot as Mike makes that argument concrete.

Do you have any idea whether Michael Jordan would not have excelled on that Cleveland team? His numbers seem to show that he would have been a formidable presence, even if his regular season win totals were less. I just do not know how what you have put forward here proves that LeBron would be the better winner than Michael Jordan due to their teams win differential without them. Would the Bulls have not won 55 games without LeBron as opposed to Michael? Would the Cavs have been better had Michael been the only player they lost?

You are trying to ask me questions that really do not correspond to my point and make your argument, but your argument seems to have holes in it. You can believe that LeBron leads his teams to more wins than any other player in history, indeed his last 4 seasons have had major win totals. Still, would LeBron have made the Bulls better than they were with Michael? I think their is no gurantee that would be true. Or Michael making the Cavs or Heat better than they were with LeBron. What I do know is, Michael Jordan put up huge numbers and performances on par with any player in history and led his teams to championships. You see 66 wins as impressive, but put that in the context of where both players finished their 6th season. Than the 7th.

LeBron might have been better than Michael Jordan at 19. Better even at 22. But, I think around the age of 23, Michael Jordan was on a level no other basketball has been at. It may not have shown in the win column, but would a 23 year old LeBron James have done enough to make the 1986-87 Bulls a better than 40-42 team? Michael Jordan couldn't averaging 37.1-5.2-4.6 (not to mention 2.9 spg and 1.5 bpg), so let me be skeptical in LeBron making that much of a difference. You basically use Scottie Pippen doing well one season after Michael retired as a way to say that he was not as important to a team as LeBron was and I do not think that is necessarily true. Forgive me if some things that Michael Jordan did and some actions, accomplishments he had at the same age as LeBron does not make me conform to your line of thinking. I am not saying you are wrong, just that I disagree with you. You may disagree with me, but your counterpoint of the Bulls 40-42 going up against a 66-16 Cavs team, made no sense and did not do much to prove any point you made.

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You didnt say that about the

You didnt say that about the 40 win team, I said it. You said Jordan may not have won without Pip and Grant, but same could be said about LBJ and DWade/Bosh.

I merely presented evidence to refute that notion. MJ never played on a winning team that did not contain Pip, simple as that, Lebron had two 60 win seasons without DWade/Bosh. He couldve went to Chicago and played with DRose, couldve played in LAC with Blake, couldve played in NYK with Stat. He will forever be linked to Wade/Bosh, but its not like he wouldnt have won in several other scenarios.

Jordan may have but we dont have evidence to support it in the slightest because he didnt play on a winning team unless Pip was on it.

You said Pip didnt carry a team, well I remembered when Jordan retired and the stuff people were saying was going to happen to that team was the same thing that people were saying was going to happen to Cleveland. Cleveland collapsed. Chicago barely missed a step. It was due to Pippen's phenomenal season with the numbers I mentioned.

I am not trying to give Scottie all the credit, but the older I get and the more I look back, I see just how underrated the guy was playing in Jordan's shadow.

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the one problem I always have

the one problem I always have with you is, you take something and turn it into something totally different. you say I think Lebron 66 win team in his 6th season is the same circumstantially as Jordan's 40 win season in his 3rd.

Not what I said, will keep it really simple. The point was, Lebron needs Wade and Bosh to win just as Mike needed Pip and Grant. so here is what I did.

I took Jordan's best season w/o Pip and Grant. The Bulls were 40-42. I simply compared that to Lebron's best season, without Wade and Bosh. They were 66-16. Thats all I did. Your apologist nature wants to delve deeper to prove that somehow our eyes dont see what is we think they are seeing. That is a legit factual measurable. You can break it down and analyze as much as you want. I just posted the best season numbers without the other players in question.

Furthermore, Lebron had 6 seasons in Cleveland (no Wade or Bosh) with better records than Michael's best season w/o Pippen and Grant. So I am not just using the 60 win seasons. Thats 6 seasons in Cleveland without Wade and Bosh winning more than 40 games each season. Thats not saying who is better, thats just a legit measurable...but you will come up with a way to slant it to make it look like that is totally irrelevant or didnt happen. You keep saying there isnt any proof, but there never will be if you refuse to acknowledge any type of fact instead of making excuses for why something did or did not happen.

mikeyvthedon
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Turning it into something totally different

Is something you have done this entire post, so feeling is mutual. How can you compare a guys third season to a guys sixth season? I know LeBron did not have Scottie Pippen, but you basically penalize Michael Jordan for having him. You let Magic completely off of the hook for playing with Kareem due to that incredible Finals performance, yet you overlook Michael Jordan's MANY incredible play-off and Finals performances because he played with a guy who went to the play-offs without him?

Michael DID NOT have five losing seasons. He had 3. Here is your misconception that you have failed to address. It may seem like nitpicking, but I feel it is leaving out facts by placing an extra 2 losing seasons on Michael's shoulders:

  • His rookie season: 38-44 (He played all 82 games)
  • His second season: 30-52 (He played in 18 games! His team went 9-9 with him in those games. Considering they were 21-43 without him, I think he helped them win quite a bit. You may say I am being an apologist, but he scored 63 points in a losing effort against an '86 Celtics team that was 67-15 and won a NBA championship. His team got swept, just stating that the team he lost to was indeed, stacked to the gills)
  • His third season: 40-42 (He played all 82 games. Call this his second losing season. Once again, will point out that while he scored the most points in this season and it may have been his best season BP aka Before Pippen as you seemingly state it, his team was 20 out of 23rd in scoring. Translates to him not having much help. I think it is a little ridiculous to compare this team to LeBron's 66-16 team, though suit yourself. Just doubt very many people buy that as a viable argument.)
  • His fourteenth season: 37-45 (He played 60 games! 30-30. How can you blame him for his team going 7-15 without him? They may not have gotten to .500, just do not pin games he never played as him not finishing there. I do not know if I am an apologist for stating he was 38, though I told you Scottie Pippen went 3-20 with the Bulls at the same age. Also, he was not exactly putting up numbers like Mike at that point.)
  • His fifteenth season: 37-45 (He did play all 82 games. Call this his third losing season. It is simple to admit a 39 year old Michael Jordan could not lead this Wizards team to the play-offs or a winning record. Could a 24 year old Michael Jordan? You know, the first season he played with Scottie Pippen? I would say that would be a possibility. By the way, the next season, Michael replaced by Gilbert Arenas, the team goes 25-57. I am sure you will bring up that Gilbert "is a numbers guy and not a wins guy", just food for thought that a 39 year old Michael Jordan leaves and this team gets even worse)

Now, do I believe LeBron James needed Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to win a championship in general? I would say it would have been possible in other circumstances. Just not guranteed, as you seem to believe. They barely did it this year, though they did it. Still, are they not at least the equivalent or a better combination than Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant? I realize it was not fair to put full blame on LeBron for not winning a ring with those Cleveland teams, but putting full blame on Michael Jordan for not having a winning season without Scottie Pippen, considering the circumstances he was under, is also quite unfair.

Saying Michael was not a wins guy and using one season of Scottie's shooting percentages and the Bulls winning almost equal games in the regular season is not telling the whole story. Are post-season wins not more valuable than regular season wins? Of course teammates are involved, but you point to LeBron as having subpar teammates and leading them to a 66-16 season. Well, were Michael Jordan's not a great deal worse in his third season compared to LeBron's 6th season? How is that a parallel and how does that make me think or understand your point?

LeBron was better in his 6th season than he was in his 3rd. So was Michael Jordan. In fact, if you look at a 27 year old Mike and a 27 year old LeBron, they were both playing the best basketball they had played in their career. Michael had the luxury of growing with some young teammates in Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant, both of whom took time to create a title contender with. LeBron never had equal teammates, until he joined with a couple players near his age who had established careers and immediately built a team into a title contender. What he did in Cleveland was impressive, just incredibly different circumstances from what Michael had to deal with.

Ultimately, you point to these records they had in the regular season and feel that establishes LeBron as the better winner. You look at the destruction of the Cavs without him and Pippen's (one) successful season without Michael (in the regular season, NOT the postseason mind you) thinking that gives LeBron a definite edge. That is on you, but it is indeed leaving a lot out. It is not taking circumstances into account and it is limiting anything I can bring up with Michael after his third season due to that being the last time he was without Scottie Pippen on the Bulls. Is that not an argument that is incredibly one sided and a tad narrow minded?

What I feel should be asked is, do you truly believe the Bulls would have been a worse team in 1993-94 had Michael Jordan replaced Scottie Pippen? I think they at the very least would have been similar if not better. They obviously were a deeper team than the year before, when they kept the exact same roster and fell from 67-15 to 57-25. Also, do you believe that if Michael Jordan and LeBron James switched places through their first few seasons that LeBron would not face the same struggles Michael had? It is difficult to say Michael would be better switching places with LeBron, but when you look at the resume (you have to look at the full resume, not just without Pippen), I at least entertain that as a possibility.

LeBron is obviously an incredibly special player who has accomplished special things. He did a lot in Cleveland with very little help. Still, your argument uses Scottie Pippen as a crutch for Michael Jordan in a foot race. I just do not find that viable and I do not think others did either. It almost seemed like you went crazy studying LeBron, went crazy studying Pippen (for two seasons) and than neglected Michael Jordan. Even if you want to neglect everything after his being 27 (which you don't, as you constantly bring up his losing in Washington as evidence to support you), you should atleast acknowledge that Michael's success as a player was in LeBron's league. I know LeBron had won 60 games twice and Mike only did it once (with Scottie Pippen, so it seems not to count), but they both had one ring.

You also stated that you did not buy LeBron being penalized for coming to the league straight out of high school. Well, why penalize Michael Jordan two years for going to college (for three years, just along the age lines it leads to two more years LeBron has played at 27)? I think people are unnecessarily hard on LeBron, they have been ever since he went 66-16, just also think you are doing the same thing to Jordan here. I for one know that Michael Jordan was not always seen as perfect, I know there was a time when he was given heavy criticism and seen as a person who could not get it done. One thing I also know is, the numbers do not lie that he put in his all and than some to try.

LeBron has mainly done the same thing, though his coming up short on performance standards are kind of glaring when you compare a 27 year old LeBron's career to a 27 year old Michael Jordan's career. The totals do not matter as much to me as the averages until they have a similar sample size and LeBron has done more. They may matter to you and make you feel like LeBron will crush Michael's accomplishments, but at the same age I think they are all you have and are really not much to diminish Michael's dominance. I guess you felt that Michael could have been argued against as the best player in the league from 23-27, I still feel that argument was a lot heavier for LeBron against Kobe until a couple of years ago. I know I am not going to change your mind, just wanted to maybe open your mind and actually get you to see both sides. I do not have blinders on, just know my basketball history and know what I see, which does not necessarily support the evidence that you are laying down as gospel.

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he was the main cause, but he

he was the main cause, but he didnt win till the system was in place, and actually it was hard to win even then...Jordan was always a selfish player. he admitted it. Doug Collins said the guy played for stats and was always checking the scorers table. Jordan was great, but he almost was a Clipper. The organization and coaching staff had a great individual player on their hands but in order to win they had to place the perfect, unselfish complimentary pieces around him.

in my other favorite sport, boxing, we sometimes are blinded by the fighter who overwhelms opponents with great punching power. its probably even worse in basketball when it comes to the love affair with pure scorers such and MJ and Kobe. MJ's teammates criticized him for not passing the ball while being doubled. We all know what Kobe does.

MJ and Kobe are two of my favorite players and to me the best two scorers to ever do it. Doesnt mean they were not selfish. They would do anything FOR THEM to win, the team was just along for the ride. This is going to be a huge test for Kobe this year having Nash. I am anxious to see if he is willing to play off the ball much more. Knowing Kobe, he will in reg season, but as all great punchers try to box the first few rounds, when they go in deep waters they revert back to what is natural. In the playoffs, Kobe will try and take over and take crazy shots...the difference is, it wont work for him...but with Pippen, Grant, Rodman by MJ's side, it always worked out for him.

If you remember in his HOF induction speech, he never once said I thought my team was better than their team, he always said he thought he was better than Leroy Smith or Buzz Peterson...and he belonged in the same class as Magic and Bird. He did, not taking that away from him, all of that was true...but Jordan was always more interested in individual competitiveness and challenges....fortunately he had soldiers that were willing to dive on the grenades for him and walk through those trenches undeterred. Damn good soldiers.

Coming up - "Out Of Bounds: How wide is the Gap between Jordan and Kobe"

mikeyvthedon
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surve

Basically, I think you and I agree that while Michael was great, he was an @sshole. I think he and Kobe Bryant are incredibly egotistical and I refer to them as sociopaths. I also think that they are the two best basketball players in NBA history. Yes, Michael Jordan was not as much about TEAM as one might want. He had some good players around him, better than they have been given credit for being in most cases. Does that mean that LeBron would have been better in the same situation?

Your main point is Scottie Pippen doing really well without Michael and LeBron doing well with a relatively flawed team. The problem I have with this is, I can't fully believe that LeBron could have flawlessly switched places and done what Michael Jordan did. I guess I can't reverse it, I just know that Michael's accomplishments are their. He did what he did in his time and was way better than everyone else. LeBron is doing the same thing, just not on the scale that Michael had from the ages of 23-27. Especially in the play-offs during his 25th and 26th year.

Michael being interested in the individual as opposed to the team still did not stop him from indeed accepting the accepting the system that won him championships. As I said, he combined individual greatness and team success like no other NBA player ever has. LeBron was individually incredible this season, but can I say he was better than Michael? Would Michael still not have come up huge? He always seemed to, which is why I have a hard time believing that your LeBron argument is as concrete as you think.

From the first time I saw LeBron James, I knew he had the ability to be an absolutely special player. I wanted him to be better than Michael Jordan and believed he had the ability to do so. I was ecstatic when he got to the Finals his 4th season in the league, not to mention the success he had before than. Was really happy with his efforts during the 66-16 season, though a tad disappointed they came up short. The thing is, at the age of 27, was he really BETTER than Michael Jordan? I do not know if one can say that. His accomplishments are after all over 9 seasons compared to 7 for Michael.

Yet, over Michael's first 9, he was unsurpassed as an individual combining team success. LeBron's career will be different than Michael Jordan's, that is for sure. I do not think the age measurement you performed is really fair, as they did come in with different circumstances. Plus, I do not see how anything was proven about LeBron being more of a factor for his teams winning than Michael Jordan. Especially in a category that I think LeBron would consider important even if you may not. Championships. The league is different, the times have changed and Jordan did have a better circumstance in Chicago than LeBron had in Cleveland. Still, he did something with that, something Scottie Pippen for as much as he "carried" the Bulls, did not. LeBron is doing something now, just would think that he maybe has more to prove to be along the lines of Michael. If you want to know why, think I have expressed that pretty thoroughly.

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well...

I can say right now Lebron will never overtake Jordan as the GOAT, Lebron will never ever ever ever ever EVER be on his level

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^ great argument.

^ great argument.

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mentality

Lebron's mentality could never rival Jordan's. Jordan was an absolute killer, Lebron is not even close to being the finisher Jordan was. Talent wise, Jordan did more will 2 less inches and about 50 less pounds on his frame, whereas Lebron uses his huge body to do his post work, rather than using fancy footwork like Jordan did.
He won DPY, which Lebron will never do, and defense is just as important as scoring.
It's not about the 6 champoinships, the MVPs, ten scoring titles, etc. it's about the fact that Jordan dictated exactly what happened on court.

We also have to think about the competition back then. There were a lot more contenders that Jordan had to push his team through, unlike the Heat's cake walk last year to the finals (No Derrick Rose/Bulls, Injured Celtics team, Orlando was depleted, there were no other challengers in the East)

Let's see if James can drop 40 and average 21-6-6 when he's 40 years old.

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He won DPY, which Lebron will

He won DPY, which Lebron will never do, and defense is just as important as scoring.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Lebron is a very good defender and I wouldn't be surprised in the least if he won a DPOY over the next few seasons.

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LeBron damn near should've

LeBron damn near should've won it last year.

And even if LeBron never wins it, it won't mean he wasn't a great defender. Scottie Pippen was arguably a better defender than Jordan, and he never won a DPOY award.

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I think Lebron shouldve won

I think Lebron shouldve won it this year. Even still, he is arguably the best defender in the league because he can guard 4 positions. The thing is that Lebron doesnt get the full credit for his defense because he can lock people down with out being a liability to foul out. Also, defensive intensity takes a lot from offense, but it doesnt seem to affect him, so physically and mentally, the dude is playing with a fully charged battery pack.

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you kidding me?! you think Lebron would have won without Wade and Bosh?? You must be smokin the schwag man, they were one game away from losing to the celtics in the semis, you think the Celtics wouldn't have won one more game even if it werent for Wade and Bosh? who would be their second option, mike miller? who could barely walk? Nooo Waay.

This makes me wonder if everyone on this forum is like 12 years old and has never ever seen Jordan play before?

I'd recommend "Playing for Keeps" and "One last Shot", great books on Jordan.

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I didnt say this year. I am

I didnt say this year. I am saying that eventually Lebron was going to win, whether it was in Cleveland, Miami or elsewhere. It didnt have to be with Wade and Bosh specifically. Thats like sayin Jordan would win with Longley and Kerr.

So understand what I am saying. I did not say he would win with the HEAT's current team without Wade and Bosh. I mean where did you get that from? Lebron was eventually going to win a title with or without DWade/Bosh, he just decided to head south before he hit 30.

The Heat wouldnt have won without Bosh coming back from injury this year. Trust me, I know what I am talking about, not just here trolling for points.

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Horible Story

I Like the attempt you put into this article but it was trash how u viewed it.

At the begining you are saying Lebron is better than MJ becaus he is more well rounded, while he is more well rounded than MJ he is not better, Lamar Odom isnt better than Dirk because he is more well rounded so thats completely irrelivent.

And your point is with Lebron not having allstars play with him after he left cleveland and MJ did after he retired the first time will only help MJ argument he made those players better, Pippen was gonna be one regardless, but the rest of them improved a great deal while being in Chicago they all had a new level of confidence which can take u a long way, look at jeremy lin, who had a level of confidence in themselves after playing with LeBron...

Also u mentioned how the impact each player had when they left, when Lebron left cleveland they were much worse than when MJ left the bulls and that is beacuse the System was built and tailor made for lebron! it was not like that for Jordan
The bulls ran the triangle offense which as you know no one player completely dominates the ball, and MJ had someone on the perimeter that was also very talented to take away possessions from himself, they had a team structure that they put players in positions to better themselves and the team....
while the cavs played everyone sit on the 3 line and give lebron the ball at the top of the key, when he drives be ready to catch and shoot...
take away lebron now u have a bunch of bafoons that are saying well wat do we do now!

and the players had career years when MJ left not true, Grant, Paxson, Longley, Kerr all had their career year when jordan was on the bulls with them, and you can make an argument for pippen's best year he only averaged over 20 ppg 4 times so its not a huge selection...While lary hughes and Big Z and Jamison and Shaq all got worse when they played with lebron. numbers show mo williams didnt get any better just more popular by playing with lebron

another thing i didnt like was how u LBJ Total stats in the playoffs are better than MJ that is because he played only 70 games in his first 7 playoff appearences while lebron played 115 so the totals are gonna favor lebrong here are their averages

MJ (84/85-90/91) 34.6ppg 6.6rpg 7.1apg 2.5spg 1bpg % were 50.9-32-83.5 in 42mpg
LBJ (05/06-11/12)* 28.5ppg 8.7rpg 6.7apg 1.7spg .9bpg % were 46.9-31.2-74.5 in 43.4mpg

Lebron only rebounded better than MJ and he is 2-3 inches taller 40-50lbs heaveir and has way worse rebounders on his team so he should of had at least that one!

Not this Also Lakers, Celtics and Bad Boy Pistons were the only teams to win the Ship b4 MJ got his 1st thats 3 dynasties while lebron had the Heat, Spurs, Mavs, Celtics, Lakers all win one and Lebron lost in the Finals something MJ has never done!

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nah dude, that was trash what

nah dude, that was trash what you just wrote and took out of context what I said.

you are for sure an apologist because you take every advantage that LBJ has over Jordan and makes up some bull&$#%#&@! excuse about why he has it.

I didnt say Lebron was simply better because he was well rounded....I said because he affects the win column more and he would be the first player I selected to build around. "The reason why I pick Lebron and Magic alike is because I look at players from how they affect the win/loss column." is the first thing I said when going into the argument. I only mentioned Lebron's versatility by saying he was the closest thing to Magic in that regard. Then everyone start saying I said just because he can do this and that he is better. I wasnt even comparing from that perspective. I was comparing from team impact.

you guys say Jordan is better for example because of his playoff averages, but when I point out the fact that Jordan appeared in the postseason twice more than Lebron in same number of years but yet some of Lebron's numbers nearly double Jordan's, you come back with, well he played 115 games and Jordan only played 70.

Damn straight he did, because he was getting much deeper in the playoffs than Jordan was with a squad that no more talented than.

Jordan made players better, so when he left they shot higher percentages. That makes sense. What makes even more sense is that when Jordan came back those same percentages dropped. We are not talking scoring averages, we are talking shooting percentages. Other players games suffered around Jordan, it was however for the greater good, I am sure they would have it no other way.

Big Z, Shaq and Jamison all got worse when they played with Lebron? LOL, those guys were all passed their primes. There All Star days were far behind them before they teamed up with Lebron.

mikeyvthedon
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Dude, how could you say LeBron was leading them further every season? Michael was getting pretty damn far before he won his championship. Not to mention, he played two fewer seasons! Michael's first three teams were bad teams. What do you call a team that has a leading scorer that goes for 37.1 per game and finishes 20th out of 23 teams in scoring? That is ugly.

He should not have called your post a horrible story or whatever he said. You definitely leave things out, though. Claiming Michael did not help in the win column as much as Magic and LeBron just seems to have next to no proof. The Bulls going 55-27 the year after, once again, does not mean they were not missing Michael Jordan. It didn't mean Scottie was carrying them to the levels Michael would have.

You are flat out claiming Scottie was more important to them winning than Michael because of this, when that does not seem to be the case. Using the shooting % from one year before is not data that proves much at all. Especially when one shoots as poorly as Scottie did against the Knicks. LeBron is different from Michael, but you are flat out claiming that LeBron will keep up his production and keep winning at the rate Michael Jordan ended up going 5 more times.

He could do that, but I truly dislike saying he has done more than Michael Jordan at the same age when ultimately they both have a championship. Michael did not have those MVP's, but I told you I flat out do not buy that as he was the best player in basketball I would like to think bar none. How are you not giving LeBron the same outs that you are claiming the previous poster to have given Michael? You are making big claims here man, which will need time to have them proven as fact or fiction. Either way, to say LeBron played a great deal more play-off games and was not injured during his 2nd year does not necessarily make him more of a winner or a better player. Funny that you can make excuses when they are for your argument, just none against your argument. Truly, you could have articulated this and researched it a tad more to make it as strong as you believe it to be.

NYK2010
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Thats a lot to read but if

Thats a lot to read but if your starting a team you might want to start with a big man like Kareem.

Since he can play for a long time and was great on offense and defense.

IndianaBasketball
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@JBickart14 You made some

@JBickart14

You made some very good points about LeBron's teams in Cleveland. None of those guys had big names, but that team was tailor made for LeBron. A pick and pop big man to clear driving lanes. A hustle guy who rebounded, defended and did the little things. He had wings who could shoot the ball. The team was built around LeBron's strengths, which were dominating the ball. They basically spread the floor, let LeBron isolate and he'd either shoot it or pass it. It began with LeBron and ended with him.

Obviously, that team was bound to fall apart without the guy it was built around. LeBron's Cleveland teams reminded me of Allen Iverson's 76ers teams.

A lot of people like to give LeBron so much credit for taking "bums" to the Finals, but that team was tailor made for him and while not great individual players, they did a lot of the things that LeBron needed them to do.

JBickart14
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IndianaBasketball

Thats the point i was making MJ usually had i really good shooter b4 his 1st retirement and that was the PG usually the PF and C couldnt spread the floor and in the words of Phil Jackson "Pippen is a sometime shooter sometime it drops sometimes it doesnt"

if MJ had nothing but floor spacers his number would have been thru the roof and his percentages will increase too...i dont wanna take nothing from lebron's greatestness bcuz he is great but ppl give too much credit to his numbers which arent even better than Jordans and thats in a System thats tailor made for him and his numbers!

truthfully LBJ wasnt even the best rookie his rookie year, MJ was arguablly the Best 2 Guard in the league is Rookie year!

JBickart14
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IndianaBasketball

Thats the point i was making MJ usually had i really good shooter b4 his 1st retirement and that was the PG usually the PF and C couldnt spread the floor and in the words of Phil Jackson "Pippen is a sometime shooter sometime it drops sometimes it doesnt"

if MJ had nothing but floor spacers his number would have been thru the roof and his percentages will increase too...i dont wanna take nothing from lebron's greatestness bcuz he is great but ppl give too much credit to his numbers which arent even better than Jordans and thats in a System thats tailor made for him and his numbers!

truthfully LBJ wasnt even the best rookie his rookie year, MJ was arguablly the Best 2 Guard in the league is Rookie year!

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lbj

Yep, and the eastern conference then was awful! Everyone knew the top 5-6 western teams would thump whoever made it to the finals from the east. Get the broom out for lbj's Cavs.

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Sadly, leprincess

will never reach MJ's level because of the Decision. It was the most selfish, egotistical, and pathetic event ever in the NBA. It will impact his legacy forever. Thus, MJ is GOAT. Case closed.

tbest23
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MJ

Jordan's Bulls improved by 15 some games his rookie year. He was injured for part of year 2 and they went down an additional 15 games. Quite the swing. Also, before a Eastern conference playoff game against the then Bullets, MJ and Pippen were sitting in a Ferrari smoking cigars. Chris Webber arrived and asked them what they were doing. MJ replied, "celebrating"! This was before the game! No one had the killer instinct MJ has, no one...

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Where are you getting these

Where are you getting these numbers from? They won 27 games before he got there and 38 his rookie year, your math is off.

They won 30 games his second year, your math is again off.

factual errors, you may as well say he went to the moon, no one here would care as long as it was a pro-Jordan comment.

Nbanflguy
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I cant tell if you are

I cant tell if you are serious or just playing devil's advocate. I am a Lebron fan and it is not totally ridiculous to compare him to Jordan, but your reasoning and logic is just stupid to put it nicely.

surve
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I am being serious. I have

I am being serious. I have presented information to prove he is at least in the same conversation. No need to play Devils Advocate on this one. The problem is, everyone puts on their Jordan blinders and earmuffs and its a moot discussion at that point. Its a one-sided conversation.

No one has given any valid debate to most of my key points. Only excuses as to why this or that happened or didnt happen. Plus a sea of negs. More negs on a single post than people discussing the topic.

A lot of guys here didnt even see Jordan play. Thats the funny part. What part of my reasoning is stupid? Its stupid because its a one sided conversation. The same criteria you say is stupid, you take and apply to your favorite player to generate reason on why he is better than the next guy, and thats not saying Jordan is your favorite, I mean anyone.

Bird fans dont apply the same criteria to him when Magic Johnson fans argue that Magic is better...and vice versa. Same with Wilt vs Russell. Oscar Roberson vs Magic.

Tell you what you guys do.....give some set criteria and lets compare from there. Instead of calling my post trash and stupid when I am quoting actual facts and numbers.

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No offense but you haven't

No offense but you haven't given one valid reason for LeBron over Jordan and when 80% of the users (including guys like MikeyV, JoeWolf1 and IndianaBasketball!) disagree with you I think it's safe to say you are the one who doesn't get it. Had you said you would take LeBron over Jordan to start a team because he does more things and can guard more positions I would have happily agreed. But the way you have went about this is almost showing EuropeanBaller levels of complete ignorance.

The wins argument has been shot down mutiple times. Jordan leaves but the rest of his team came back, plus added 2 key others. LeBron left Cleveland but they also had Jamison, Varejao and Mo Williams miss over 100 games combined as well as having a lot of D-League guys come in. They are NOT even close to the same situation and it's ignorant to think it is.

Then you rant about bulk stats, which are nice and all but averages are better. I honestly don't know how that's remotely debatable and clearly I'm not the only one who thinks so. You rip Jordan for having Pippen, yet Magic gets a pass with Kareem and Worthy? What? But no Magic won in HS and in college too! Well guess what? So did Jordan! He wasn't the star of his college team, but he did you know hit the game winning shot to win it all.

You also say that rings are overrated, and regular season wins are the way to go. You're probably alone on that one. You ask for someone to provide stats showing that MJ was superior to LeBron in the playoffs and then when they are presented to you, comletely ignore/write them off because LeBron has more bulk stats at the same age (which you know leaves out when each guy came into the league, another ridiculous argument).

The thing isn't that we are all Jordan lovers who can't get over how perfect he was, it's that your argument for LeBron sucks. It's not even that you're only looking at one side of the story, you're looking at the wrong numbers and acting like they make your case, which to the majority of the users (if not all) on here, they don't at all. I'm sure I'll get some rebuttal which includes me worshiping Jordan and how your "facts" are legit, but just know that when you're the only person who sees it that way that the problem is probably you and not some truly advanced mind. Also before you disagree, realize I have yet to see anyone agree with you that LeBron is better then Jordan by using your case. The only things I've heard are people love Jordan too much and JamminLemon show his absolute bias once more for LeBron James. They haven't used any of your reasoning for their cases.

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Forgetting stats and criteria

Forgetting stats and criteria just based on watching both players, what separates them Jordan was is 6-0 in the FINALS and also the way he dominated his competition in the FINALS... Every team the Bulls beat in the Finals had solid VETERAN teams lead by HOFers on them (Malone,Stockton,Payton,Drexler,Barkely,Magic).. Lebron has a chance but the next two years will be very important to his legacy in the context of GOAT.. Comparing both players in their prime the difference was Jordan's mentality and drive to be the greatest individually which lead to incredible team success..Lebron is just got a taste of the championship champagne, the GOAT should be able to grab the next couple championships right??

surve
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the bias here is

the bias here is unbelievable. Lebron took a bunch of bums to the Finals but they were tailor made bums carefully placed around him. a franchise suffers a monumental collapse but its because the system was totally custom made for one guy, yet when he got there he increased their wins by 18 before them even knowing if he was going to be good or not.

I didnt leave stuff out on Jordan intentionally, you guys know everything about Jordan which you have proved by your posts so you werent going to let me leave anything out.

If you say its too early to compare Lebron to Jordan, fine. Its a matter of opinion, but the same stuff you guys are saying about Jordan in this conversation, your parents and grandparents are saying about Russell, Chamberlain, Robertson, etc....

I saw Jordan his entire career, I was watching UNC on TV when Phil Ford was playing, yet dude gets on here and say people on this forum must be 12 years old. Thats the same thing someone would say to you that grew up in Russells day.

Well, Russell, Chamberlain, Abdul Jabbar, etc careers are long over just as Jordan, so we can compare them, would you agree? It wouldnt be a point in making cases for them as GOATs on this forum because its pro-Jordan and anything logical becomes illogical when trying to compare players to him....and thats immature and lacks any common reasoning. There will just be more excuses as to why Jordan did or didnt do this or that.

Jordan is about the only player who has had a claim to being GOAT who's team's record wasnt adversly affected. Even players that dont have that claim, when they left, their teams suffered. but there is always an excuse. When most stars left their teams, the teams experienced at least a 15 game decline. When Shaq left Orlando, they won 15 less games the next year.

Only Michael gets a pass for this, then a double standard. The reason why they didnt collapse is because the system was tailor made so when Jordan leaves, they can keep things competitive enough until he returns....but when Cleveland goes from best the worst you use the same argument but with a negative twist, saying it was tailor made for Lebron but for him only. Because I say Pippen kept them from going down you twist my words to make it seem like I think Pippen is better than Jordan.

I rarely mention awards because then you get hyperbole like "Jordan won DPOY" which is something Lebron will never do. Thats like saying Nash is one two MVP's and thats something Kobe will never do. That latter statement has more probability than the former. Nash isnt better than Kidd, but he has 2 MVP's to Kidd's zero.

Its fanboy nonsense. Some sucker will take what I said here about Shaq and imply that I am saying Shaq is better. I just want to know why the double standards for Mike?

If you go back and read my posts on this site, I have never stated that Jordan or any other player was the best ever or the greatest ever. I have always said Jordan was the greatest player I had ever seen. I cant say he is the greatest because I didnt grow up watching Russell and Chamberlain. So I cant chit on some old timer who saw those guys play and saw Jordan play as well if they have arguments to support those guys being better. Its not clearcut and definitely not something you can match with stats or Jordan doesnt compare to ANY of those guys. A lot of the statistical catagories and awards werent even recognized in Russell's day.

This was a brutal thread, and while it wont deter me from posting, it certainly could deter others. I probably wont post another thread that in some how can be viewed as diminishing to Jordan, which is really anything negative said about him. Thats a shame too, because even though I am a Lebron fan, I have fonder memories of Jordan as a player. Lebron is in my top 10 favorite players of all time, but Jordan is probably tied for first as my favorite player along with Magic. T-Mac and CWebb rank higher on my list of favorites than Lebron does. So I am not a fanboy, thats not what this thread was about, I dont get emotional towards a player when discussing what they did on the court. Lebron is at least 3 spots behind Jordan on my favorite players list. Thats funny too because I didnt think much of Jordan off the court, and Lebron is one of my favorite basketball "citizens" if you will.

So its not an emotional thing with me when I look at what a player has done on the court. I have debated topics like this for years and its the same thing every time. I never said Kobe was better than Michael, but I have debated why he is closer to Michael than others think. I have debated that Kobe MAY HAVE BEEN better offensive player than Jordan. Even with that inkling of uncertainty, its still blasphemous to use Jordan's name in vain. Out come the excuses or the uneducated arguments. Why even post if you have nothing to say but Jordan is better and he has 6 rings, yada ya?

I probably wont post much material here in favor of Lebron, not that I do anyway as I usually avoid chiming in on most Lebron threads here. Its just that this site is brutally immature. If someone doesnt agree with you, then there is no dialog and if it is, it is still one sided. Not everyone has to see things from my perspective. Most of this stuff is a matter of opinion. Which obviously is not something that is allowed here when people are so emotional that they resort to calling names and saying your post is stupid or trash. It just shows that you are biased to begin with.

I am done with this thread because I thought something constructive would come out of it, all it was, was more Jordan exhaultation mixed with the same Lebron bashing...save from some intelligent debate from mikeyv, omphalos and a couple others.

The one thing I do think came out of this was, I think instead on doing a new Out of Bounds topic right away, I would like to do a standardized criteria (with you guys help of course) for Player vs Player assessment so that we can make things clear and try and erase some double standards. I am not so small of a man that I cant admit I may have presented some double standards in my posts. If you have set criteria however, it is easier to keep people in line and point out those double standards.

signing off....

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This thread has been a

Breath of fresh air, can't express how nice it is too read a serious discussion instead of so many Howard, Wiggins vs fill in the blank or arguing about Rubios race threads.

I have read every post and it boils down opinion, to The Wire and The Sopranos are best tv ever, my brother swearsit is Breaking Bad. No argument is gonna change either of our minds.

My only comment on MJ over LBJ or vice versa is this. Elliot Kalb wrote Who is Better circa 2003. He then claimed that Shaq was best NBA player ever. 9 years latter I bet almost no one would even consider that logical. I think we tend to look at what is freshes in our memory and place a value on that.

I have no doubt that in 5 years if Durant had multiple rings and looking like a career 28 plus ppg guy some of us might argue he near the best... please don't think I assume this.

again thanks for a great read

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Surve

"Why even post if you have nothing to say but Jordan is better and he has 6 rings, yada ya?"- Some people don't have the time to post novels, 6-0 I'm the Finals is more impressive than "yada ya." The problem with your argument is clearly you undervalue Jordans accomplishments and overvaule Lebrons... Throwing put a bunch of stats and opinions/your prespective doesnt make you correct... Jordan 6-0 in the Finals + Finals MVP 6 times (pinnacle of basketball) that holds more weight than all the that win/lost, who played with better players, yada ya nonsense you are trying to argue...

IndianaBasketball
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@surve There's a reason so

@surve

There's a reason so many people put Jordan up on such a high pedestal. There's a reason this man is considered the greatest, not just by fans and NBA historians, but his peers. Great players before his time, during his time and even after his time consider him the greatest. Jordan hasn't played in years and we still talk about him like he was playing yesterday. I know people that cried during Jordan's retirements. For awhile, the game wasn't even the same when he left! When the Rockets won their titles, they damn near had an asterik next to them lol. Wing players today look at him as the standard... The blueprint. Who do you think LeBron looks up to? Who's path is he following? Who's legacy is his being compared to daily? There is a reason for all of these things. It's not fake or just some fantasy... This is real. The man came back at 40, while being off for several seasons getting fat and smoking cigars, and did more than hold his own against the NBA's top wings.

I understand the point of this was to convince us LeBron was a better player than Jordan, but I just think you left out too many great things about Jordan to make this a fair discussion. While on your journey to convince us LeBron was better, I feel like you didn't show Jordan *enough* respect in this thread, hence the reason for so many people disagreeing with you. Jordan deserves his respect.

You tried to convince people in this thread that despite Jordan being the greatest, you still wouldn't build your franchise around him... That's just crazy. It was almost like you placed more value on regular season wins than NBA championships and post season success. You looked at MJ playing with another great player as somewhat of a negative, but ignored the fact Magic Johnson played with even better players lol... A big man who is arguably the best of all-time. Big Game James Worthy wasn't a scrub!

I mean, just listen to what you're trying to convince us of... And your reasonings were regular season wins and stats *totals*. That's a tough sell at this point in time. You even said you'd take a healthy Grant Hill over Jordan... Look... I loved Grant Hill too, but better than Jordan??? Grant Hill wouldn't even say he was better than Jordan.

I'm looking forward to your next Out of Bounds topic though... You sure started off with a bang.

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