- 05/28/2011, 09:38PM ET
fvkasm2x said 05/28, 09:38 PM
that Fiona and me do it in my van every Sunday.
Great song aside, this is about Pippen's remarks about LBJ and MJ. Yes, another one of those threads.
I say it is both STUPID to compare these two players and that they aren't even comparable to begin with. You can argue that they are comparable or that it makes sense to compare them (or both).
1. You can't look at LBJ's NBA record at age 26 compared to MJ's at age 26. LBJ came straight out of high school. You'd have to compare them by their 8 seasons in the league.
MJ: 6 scoring titles, 3 MVP, 2 dunk titles, DPOY and most importantly TWO CHAMPIONSHIPS
LBJ doesn't have any of the last 3 things and nowhere near as many of the first two. As of right now, it isn't close if you compare careers.
2. You can't talk about "best of all time" and include a player 1/3 through his career. We've heard the next Jordan debates before. Remember Grant Hill and Kobe? Lebron may just be more talented than both those guys, but there isn't much sense in prematurely talking up LBJ on the all time list.
Hold the phone. Don't even mention their names together until further notice.
baron. said 05/29, 02:45 AM
You want a "fair" comparison, but ignore that LBJ's 8th season isn't complete.
Personally, I think a comparison through age 26 would make more sense. There's a lot to be said for experience, and MJ had loads more (going to UNC and learning from Dean Smith).
I'm not going to argue that LBJ > MJ.
But that statistically he's the closest thing we've seen.
I'm going to ignore "dunk titles". That's irrelevant.
While MJ was the better scorer, LBJ is no slouch himself. He's currently 3rd all time in the career PPG list while being a better facilitator and using a lower usage rate (meaning he doesn't dominate the ball like MJ). And I wouldn't say having ONE less MVP award is "nowhere near as many". MJ will have more titles after 8 seasons, but the two will have played in the same number of Finals.
Yes, MJ was the better defender. But the gap is starting to close. When LBJ arrived in the league he didn't even have a defensive stance. Now we're talking about a guy with only 2 less 1st Team All Defensive selections (5 to 3).
Looks legit to me.
fvkasm2x said 05/29, 01:18 PM
There are so many reasons why it is foolish to compare the two, it isn't even funny.
3. MJ never left his team to go be 2nd banana somewhere else. He wouldn't just pick up and go join Isiah or Hakeem in order to win. He wanted to win because of himself. I love MJ, but the man was an egomaniac and had a competitive drive that we haven't seen the likes of very often.
LBJ quitting on Cleveland and going to Miami is something that MJ wouldn't have ever done.
You can't compare the two because of their personalities.
4. Comparing players across generations is hard to do in any sport. Talent is different. Medical technology is more advanced. Players are bigger, stronger and faster.
With this TD I'm not saying that MJ is the best ever. I'm not saying LBJ is a bum. I'm not saying LBJ will never catch MJ in terms of stats.
What I'm saying is that there isn't much point to compare the two, given all the points I've made so far. Why not at least wait until LBJ's career is over to start making the comparisons? They would hold more water.
baron. said 05/29, 04:11 PM
MJ never left his team to go be 2nd banana somewhere else.
MJ also had a better team around him. There was no reason to leave. LBJ tried to recruit players (Bosh), but ultimately Cleveland isn't an athletes dream destination.
The comparison between MJ and LBJ goes deeper than stats.
Both could be considered the "best in the game" through their respective careers in the league. We like to compare the current best player to someone who was similar and considered best all time. LBJ to MJ makes sense in that regard.
Stylistically, at this point in their career they're also very similar. Both are slashers that defense's wanted to force into jump shots. Both are players that needed to progress their game to beat their rivals in the playoffs.
With that in mind, if you were to compare the two like you did in argument 1 (using the 8 season comparison): the progression of their games, the individual accolades, the statistics, the team success. All of it is fairly similar, and that's where the comparisons are born.
No comparison will be perfect, but LBJ is still the closest thing we've seen to MJ. And right now, that validates the comparison.
fvkasm2x said 05/30, 01:20 PM
5. Making teammates better.
LBJ hasn't done this yet. MJ made Pippen a hall of famer and on the Top 50 players of all time list.
Do you honestly think Pippen would have either of those things without Jordan? When MJ left, Kukoc was getting the ball late in Bulls games. Jackson didn't even make Pippen his #1 when Jordan left. Who has LBJ made better?
LBJ needs other supreme talent to win, MJ needed a decent supporting cast.
6. Jordan was a global icon. The Space Jam movie and music video with Michael Jackson help prove that.
Do you see Lebron making a kids movie with Disney (or Pixar or whoever)??
I have no idea who the biggest music star is right now, but Jackson is/was a legend.
Obviously this has nothing to do with basketball skill, but it goes toward legacy. Jordan could very well be the most recognizable athlete of all time. All of this came BEFORE advances in technology.
We didn't have instant news feed when Jordan played, with the wires and cables of The Internets and The Google. He became a global icon in spite of the media limitations (compared to today).
Ali = Boxing
Hogan = Wrestling
The Babe = Baseball
Jordan = Basketball
baron. said 05/30, 10:22 PM
MJ needed a decent supporting cast.
Which included 2 other HoF'ers in Pippen and Rodman. The closest thing LBJ had to that in Cleveland was All Star replacement Mo Williams and past their prime "stars"...
A lot of your 3rd argument compares what MJ became to what LBJ is now.
Was Jordan a global icon after 8 seasons?
LBJ has helped a league with image problems gain popularity it hasn't seen since the days of MJ.
Not only was regular-season viewership of NBA games up 45 percent over the previous season, it was up 30 percent over 1995-96, when folks were obsessed over Michael Jordan leading the Chicago Bulls to a 72-win season.
Looking at "The Decision" to the "Miami Heat Welcome Party" LBJ has generated interest from people that wouldn't have cared had he not become a controversial figure. It's a different type of attention than MJ, but attention nonetheless.
From the numbers, style of play, personal achievements, team success, and the attention that they bring to their sport, they're absolutely comparable (using a fair timeline).
Maybe Pippen wasn't that far off...
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