Where does LeBron rank...

zack54attack

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Another Finals MVP and another title... Let's open the debate up again!




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Scoot26

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I'd say LeBron is only second to Jordan, and I'd say this before this latest ship.. Jordan is just another level, something that LeBron could never accomplish. I think LeBron is actually more talented than Jordan was, LeBron just has never wanted it as much as Jordan did, hence why Jordan went 6-0 in the Finals, and LeBron has lost a lot of Finals.
 

JimJohnson

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You can put him anywhere in the top 3, along with Jordan and Kareem.

Right now I'd go:
1. Jordan
2. Kareem
3. LeBron

Another really good year from LeBron that nets another ship puts him ahead of Kareem, then if he gets 6 I think people really need to consider him alongside/better than Jordan.

Eve if LBJ wins out until 50, he won't be better than Jordan. Jordan has a mythology about him going 6-0 in the Finals. LBJs mythology is being known as LeBitch.
 

JimJohnson

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Stupid article, IMO. I don't know why people continue to give LBJ credit for winning with 3 different teams. First of all, he left Cleveland to go chase rings with a custom built monster in Miami. Then he went back home to Cleveland after he had already won (okay that's fine, I kind of liked that move). But then he was unhappy again so he left and decided to go to LA and missed the playoffs in his first season. It wasn't until they traded for Davis that all the pieces came together.

Does that sound like someone who's better than Jordan? Give me a fucking break Spears.
 

BNB

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Stupid article, IMO. I don't know why people continue to give LBJ credit for winning with 3 different teams. First of all, he left Cleveland to go chase rings with a custom built monster in Miami. Then he went back home to Cleveland after he had already won (okay that's fine, I kind of liked that move). But then he was unhappy again so he left and decided to go to LA and missed the playoffs in his first season. It wasn't until they traded for Davis that all the pieces came together.

Does that sound like someone who's better than Jordan? Give me a fucking break Spears.

You're right, it is ridiculous.

1st dumb point/argument he made: LBJ is the first superstar to ever win a title with 3 franchises. Calls out Magic, Kobe, and MJ in particular. Maybe it's because they didn't play for 3 different franchises?

2nd dumb argument: Winning a title in the bubble was tough. Why? Because they were away from family and friend and because there were no fans. How does that necessarily make it tougher? Plus, don't the benefits of playing in the bubble, at the very least, cancel out the cons? Benefits of no fans- when you play "on the road", there's no disadvantage. Another benefit.... no long cross country flights. You're better rested. No distractions. They had a 4 month rest period before resuming play... that probably benefited an aging LBJ more than any other young superstar. I'd take all of that over the downside of being away from your family for a few months.. plus, they can still talk via facetime, etc.

3rd dumb argument: LBJ had greater expectations than MJ, and exceeded them. WTF? Who cares? What does that have anything to do with how good of a basketball player you were on the court?

4th dumb argument: Winning in LA is tough. Uhhhh considering they have the most championships in NBA history, I'd say it's the easiest place to win a title. Yeah, expectations may be higher, but it's so much easier to put together a championship team. If he wanted to make this point, he should have used Cleveland. A fuck ton harder to win in CLE than it is to win in LA. You think AD would have pushed for a trade to CLE to play with LBJ? Fuck no.

5th dumb argument: What LBJ has done off the court for the community and how he represents himself as a leader in the black community. In terms of who the better person is, I think most people would say LBJ is a much better guy than MJ. MJ really seemed like an asshole whereas LBJ seems like a really good guy. But again, what does that have to do with basketball?
 

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You can put him anywhere in the top 3, along with Jordan and Kareem.

Right now I'd go:
1. Jordan
2. Kareem
3. LeBron

Another really good year from LeBron that nets another ship puts him ahead of Kareem, then if he gets 6 I think people really need to consider him alongside/better than Jordan.

Those are probably my top 3 too, although I put LBJ at #2.

Regarding your last point, I think that may only be the case if he wins 6 playing at an elite level. If he's part of another super team, but is the 3rd best player, and they win 2 more rings, that isn't the same as MJ being the best player in the world every time he won.

Though, honestly, I don't necessarily even look at rings as the deciding factor. I had LBJ ranked above Magic well before he even won this 4th one, and Magic has 5.
 

Briggs is GOAT

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Those are probably my top 3 too, although I put LBJ at #2.

Regarding your last point, I think that may only be the case if he wins 6 playing at an elite level. If he's part of another super team, but is the 3rd best player, and they win 2 more rings, that isn't the same as MJ being the best player in the world every time he won.

Though, honestly, I don't necessarily even look at rings as the deciding factor. I had LBJ ranked above Magic well before he even won this 4th one, and Magic has 5.
Rings aren't a huge thing for me either. I have Bird ahead of Magic and Kobe, and have had LBJ ahead of all of them since he won his 3rd in legendary fashion.

In your scenario I agree with you, I was referring to if LeBron is the man like he is now and wins 2 more.
 
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So, hear me out: I think Jordan is the better player, BUT, and hear me out, Lebron has had the better career.

Jordan's career (including his years with the Wizards, which I typically block out of my memory) was played entirely in an era of slow paced offense that was fairly stationary (with few exceptions) and heavy in the post play. Meanwhile, Lebron came into the Jordan-brand era of the NBA, and then, competed in a new higher paced, constant motion offense (with a few exceptions - looking at you Jim Boylan), that was more perimeter based.

So in my mind, Lebron is one of the few players who has been able to adapt his game, at the highest of levels, as the game was evolving with him in his prime. I'm not sure there is really another example of a player in any sport doing that. To dismiss that is foolish, imo.
 

BNB

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So, hear me out: I think Jordan is the better player, BUT, and hear me out, Lebron has had the better career.

Jordan's career (including his years with the Wizards, which I typically block out of my memory) was played entirely in an era of slow paced offense that was fairly stationary (with few exceptions) and heavy in the post play. Meanwhile, Lebron came into the Jordan-brand era of the NBA, and then, competed in a new higher paced, constant motion offense (with a few exceptions - looking at you Jim Boylan), that was more perimeter based.

So in my mind, Lebron is one of the few players who has been able to adapt his game, at the highest of levels, as the game was evolving with him in his prime. I'm not sure there is really another example of a player in any sport doing that. To dismiss that is foolish, imo.

That isn't true. The pace in the 80's was faster than it's been during most of LBJ's career.

If anything, MJ started off in a fast paced league, then it slowed as his career went on. Then it leveled out for almost 2 decades before picking up again over the last few years, since the league went crazy with 3s.

1984: 102.1
1985: 102.1
1986:100.8
1987: 99.6
1988: 100.6
1989: 98.3
1990: 97.8
1991: 96.6
1992: 96.8
1995: 91.8
1996: 90.1
1997: 90.3

2003: 90.1
2004: 90.9
2005: 90.5
2006: 91.9
2007: 92.4
2008: 91.7
2009: 92.7
2010: 92.1
2011: 91.3
2012: 92.0
2013: 93.9
2014: 93.9
2015: 95.8
2016: 96.4
2017: 97.3
2018: 100.0
2019: 100.3

What is true is that MJ played in an era that emphasized big men. The fact that the NBA has gone away from that has actually benefited LBJ. Someone at his size, and likes driving to the rim, has a much easier time when it's not clogged with big guys who want to knock you down.
 
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Axl Rose

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1st dumb point/argument he made: LBJ is the first superstar to ever win a title with 3 franchises. Calls out Magic, Kobe, and MJ in particular. Maybe it's because they didn't play for 3 different franchises?

If anything that point is a knock against him. He left situations that were at the end of the line (Wade/Bosh washed, Kyrie leaving) to go somewhere who had accumulated enough assets to facilitate big moves to get into contention.

It's smart but is the easier way to continue your dominance.
 

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If anything that point is a knock against him. He left situations that were at the end of the line (Wade/Bosh washed, Kyrie leaving) to go somewhere who had accumulated enough assets to facilitate big moves to get into contention.

It's smart but is the easier way to continue your dominance.

Exactly.

Like you, I don't blame him for leaving CLE the first time. Honestly, the way that team was constructed, it would have taken a long time to build a champion, especially since no other stars were willing to join LBJ in CLE.

But when he left, I think it would have been more respectable if he had went to a team with solid pieces, and he just took them to another level. Not saying this because I'm a Bulls fan, but Chicago would have been the perfect place to do that. He would have joined Noah, Deng, Gibson, and Rose (before we knew he was going to play at an MVP level), and that team very easily could have built on that and won a championship. Instead, he took the even easier route and joined 2 superstars in Miami.

Then, like you said, when things started to fall apart in Miami, he changes tune and is all like, "I want to go back to CLE and finish what I started." Or is that because they have one of the league's youngest up-and-coming stars in Kyrie Irving AND the #1 overall pick (Wiggins) which they can keep or trade for more pieces (Love)? Yeah... the latter. Now, obviously Love didn't wind up being the superstar everyone thought he was, but it was good enough to win another chip for LBJ.

When LBJ got back to CLE the 2nd time, he said he was going to finish out his career in CLE (For REAL this time!) and watch his kids grow up close to where he grew up as a kid.........

But then Irving left, Love started to suck and things got hard again.

LA it is!

Good for building his brand and winning.... but I can't really respect it.
 

Scoot26

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Exactly.

Like you, I don't blame him for leaving CLE the first time. Honestly, the way that team was constructed, it would have taken a long time to build a champion, especially since no other stars were willing to join LBJ in CLE.

But when he left, I think it would have been more respectable if he had went to a team with solid pieces, and he just took them to another level. Not saying this because I'm a Bulls fan, but Chicago would have been the perfect place to do that. He would have joined Noah, Deng, Gibson, and Rose (before we knew he was going to play at an MVP level), and that team very easily could have built on that and won a championship. Instead, he took the even easier route and joined 2 superstars in Miami.

Then, like you said, when things started to fall apart in Miami, he changes tune and is all like, "I want to go back to CLE and finish what I started." Or is that because they have one of the league's youngest up-and-coming stars in Kyrie Irving AND the #1 overall pick (Wiggins) which they can keep or trade for more pieces (Love)? Yeah... the latter. Now, obviously Love didn't wind up being the superstar everyone thought he was, but it was good enough to win another chip for LBJ.

When LBJ got back to CLE the 2nd time, he said he was going to finish out his career in CLE (For REAL this time!) and watch his kids grow up close to where he grew up as a kid.........

But then Irving left, Love started to suck and things got hard again.

LA it is!

Good for building his brand and winning.... but I can't really respect it.
At the time I criticized things like hell when he left CLE for Miami and I just didn't understand the notion of players having the power to make this kind of Superteam happen. I still prefer the build through the draft method / sign rando FA's.. maybe you can sign a star, but getting two stars, while already having one? Just seemed insane. Though if the Bulls had gotten LeBron/Bosh I wouldn't have said a word lol.

But, in hindsight, I don't blame him for leaving that shit show that was the Cleveland Cavs and their ownership/FO. If you look at the teams constructed around LeBron, they're all garbage. Unlike Jordan, LeBron didn't have a Jerry Krause finding him a Scottie Pippen and several good role players to surround him. Part of that is kind of the fault of LeBron's more instant success, where as they were in the Finals his 4th year, while the Bulls were acquiring Pippen and Grant in the draft after Jordan's 3rd year.

So LeBron left, and yes, as I said I didn't care for his destination. Did have a bunch of laughs when they end up losing to a lesser Mavericks team in the Finals though. Also for as talented as that Miami team was, they got taken to quite a few game 7's, which I also knock on LeBron' legacy. How often were the Bulls down in a series or even on the ropes late in a series? Their biggest deficit was a 2-0 hole in the 93 ECF.

So its been my belief that LeBron is more talented than Jordan and has a better body than Jordan for basketball, and thus some stuff is just simply easier for him than Jordan.. but LeBron lacks Jordan's killer mentality. He wants to win ships, knows how to do it and all, but that killer instinct just isn't there.

Kobe had it, but Kobe was a lesser talent.
 

Scoot26

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That isn't true. The pace in the 80's was higher than it's been during most of LBJ's career.

If anything, MJ started off in a fast paced league, then it slowed as his career went on. Then it leveled out for almost 2 decades before picking up again over the last few years, since the league went crazy with 3s.

1984: 102.1
1985: 102.1
1986:100.8
1987: 99.6
1988: 100.6
1989: 98.3
1990: 97.8
1991: 96.6
1992: 96.8
1995: 91.8
1996: 90.1
1997: 90.3

2003: 90.1
2004: 90.9
2005: 90.5
2006: 91.9
2007: 92.4
2008: 91.7
2009: 92.7
2010: 92.1
2011: 91.3
2012: 92.0
2013: 93.9
2014: 93.9
2015: 95.8
2016: 96.4
2017: 97.3
2018: 100.0
2019: 100.3

What is true is that MJ played in an era that emphasized big men. The fact that the NBA has gone away from that has actually benefited LBJ. Someone at his size, and likes driving to the rim, has a much easier time when it's not clogged with big guys who want to knock you down.
The 80s were fairly well know for the offensive output in basketball.. Hence the Showtime Lakers. Jordan was pretty free to roam around the court until the Pistons wrote the Jordan rules in the late 80s. Pat Riley expanded greatly on the Jordan rules to the rest of the league and you then saw the entire defensive shift in the 90s. This also changed the game to more of a iso game. Jordan adapted his game with time just like other greats have.

The Pistons led to a bunch of rule changes regarding fouls, roughing up, fighting, and then the Knicks led to some hand checking rule changes that benefited offenses. The entire defensive shift in the late 90s set us up for NBA rating failures in the 00's, which is what led to a bunch of rule changes that vastly changed the defensive rules and made it easier for offenses to operate.

So yeah, I would agree LeBron has had an easier time.
 

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