Is Lebron James really the greatest of all time? At this time in his career the answer is a resounding, no.
I donít quite understand it.† Arguably the greatest NBA player of all-time is Michael Jordan and the next best player after him is highly debatable. Names like Earvin ďMagicĒ Johnson, Larry Bird and Kobe Bryant all have stats that put them in contention for the title of second greatest NBA player. There is a long way to go before King James can even begin to be compared to those names.
Donít think Iím a Lebron James hater. Iíve had my issues with some of the things heís done (The Decision), but those are minor bumps in the road. As a fan, I recognize when Iím watching something special and right now the world is witnessing something special.
James is taking the mantle that Kobe has held for the last decade as the greatest player in the NBA.
James was always good. When he came into the league in 2003, he was a physical specimen. His size and speed dazzled us, but for seven years he used that same size and speed to no avail because there wasnít enough talent around him to win a championship.
I know what some of you are saying. What about comparing the stats of James now and Jordan at the same age. Iíll concede that there are some similarities and in some cases, James is better than Jordan.
James is a much better passer and by the time his career is done, he will probably surpass Jordan. Donít make the mistake and think that Jordan didnít have assists because he did. He was the deadliest scoring threat in the league for years and had defenses designed just for him (the Jordan rule). Because Jordan was the most viable scorer on the floor, he commanded attention and that made every one of his teammates (some of whom were just role players) better.
By the time it is all said and done, James may surpass Jordan in every statistical category. He may ever win more championships, more MVPs and capture more defensive player awards. For those of us who were lucky enough to watch Jordan play, we knew it was more than his accomplishments that made us marvel. Watching Jordan was an event.
Iím not saying that fans donít make plans to watch James, but itís for different reasons. When you watched Jordan, it was because you didnít want to be the only fan who missed out on whatever he did. Iím not saying James wonít someday be in that category, but for now he can continue to shoot to be the greatest behind Bryant, Johnson and Bird.