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Michael Jordan vs LeBron James: Who Has a Better Case for GOAT?

Lebron James and Michael Jordan are arguably two of the greatest players ever in the sport of basketball. They have been monumental icons or even ambassadors for the sport to reach an international level.

The NBA world has always wondered who was better between the two players. This would be left unanswered as Michael Jordan retired in 2003 and Lebron James joined the league in 2004. Assessing their strengths and weaknesses is crucial in answering this question

What can Michael Jordan do better than Lebron James?

As it has been almost 20 years since Michael Jordan has retired, most of the young viewers of this generation have forgotten what prime Michael Jordan was capable of. Simply put, he had the most unstoppable offensive arsenal in the league. Additionally, it was a completely well-rounded game both offensively and defensively.

Micheal Jordan in the zone

Michael played in the late 80s and 90s. A time when big men and rough play were common in the league. He crafted his fadeaway jumper, footwork, and ball control over the years.

He was a 6’6 powerful shooting guard, the first few of the kind. Soon Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, and others followed suit. However, Micheal’s “assassin mentality and utilization of the fundamentals paired with incredible talent and explosiveness allowed him to toy with opponents on occasion. 

Micheal Jordan solidified his argument for the GOAT or Greatest of all time by winning 6 championships for the Chicago Bulls. Additionally, he did so in two 3-peat victories. The only other team in modern basketball to 3peat were the Shaq and Kobe Lakers.

However, Lebron James makes a compelling case in his favor as well.

In terms of pure accolades and accomplishments, Jordan has more championships than Lebron James. This simple fact seemingly makes his case for GOAT undisputed. However, one could argue that Lebron is actually a better player than Jordan as an individual. Therefore, his lack of accolades is due to the greater talent that entered the league in his career. Here are some variables that make Lebron James a better player.

Here’s why Lebron is actually better than Jordan

Lebron James is fundamentally bigger and stronger than Michael Jordan. Jordan was 6’6 and 200 lbs while Lebron James is listed at 6’8 250 lbs. Therefore, in many situations, Lebron has the genetic edge over Micheal.

Lebron also adapted his game to match his contemporaries. Another reason Lebron could be considered a better player is his court vision and ability to pass the ball extremely well and get teammates involved. His passing abilities have been compared to the likes of Magic Johnson and Steph Curry.

Lebron James making a play

While passing is not a clear indicator of superior individual ability, the amount of drive and kicks, whip-around head passes, and the likes that he can generate will elevate the performance levels of his team significantly, giving them good looks at the rim.

Finally, Lebron James adapted his game to compete with the flashiest guards in the league. He mastered the 3pointer towards the back end of his career, while Jordan never really utilized the three-pointer. This means Lebron kept improving his offensive arsenal to keep up with modern-day basketball and sports science.

Lebron has been to 10 NBA Finals and is a 4time champion. Additionally, he is on pace to be the NBA’s all-time leading scorer. His ability to play at a high level for a lengthy career gives him a solid argument. Jordan retired after 15 NBA seasons. Lebron James won his most recent title in his 17th year in the league. Additionally, Jordan was nowhere close to competing during his final tenure with the Washington Wizards.

The argument for GOAT will always exist especially since two players make such good cases for it.

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