Well as you read by the title, I am going to tackle one of the toughest debates of all time. People have many different opinions on the debate and there is no way to be completely right as it is subjective. Though I will be giving my spin on it, being a huge fan of basketball and competitive player.
I will be judged in three different categories to make someone the greatest of all time. The first is the stats. You can be an amazing player but if you do not have the numbers to show for it, no one will believe you. Blake Griffin has said many times he has improved his 3pt jump shot, which he has taken more shots but not necessarily better numbers. As for this season he has had his worst percentage since 2013. Next is skills. To be considered the best you have to have skills to do it. This is the most very subjective part as I think it is more skilled to do a 360 dunk then a tomahawk and someone could think the reverse. Lastly, will be accolades. If someone has great stats but has no MVP, rings or all-star games to show for it could mean the person is not as good as the number shows.
5. Kobe Bryant
The whole world mourned of the recent passing of the great Kobe Bryant. He was a fearless competitor and ruthless perseverance. He achieved 15 all-time ALL NBA team award, 5-time champ, and has 12 all-defense selections. Kobe is known as a fantastic, artistic scorer by attacking the basket and his legendary fadeaway. So when people also hear the 12 defensive selctions they are shocked because he was not known for that. He was quick on his feet and could stay in front of players like no tomorrow. Being a two-time scoring champ and having 25 points a game gives yet another reason he should be in the top five
4. Bill Russel
If you win 11 championships you get into the top player discussion for sure. There should be no debate there. Though this does not put you number one on the lack of other talented players in the league compared to other eras. Regardless of one of the best all-time with 22.5 average rebounds per game and 5 time MVP. Interesting stat about Russell is he averaged 6-8 blocks per game per experts as at the time it was not calculated. He has tremendous hustler and great post moves and excellent at getting positioning on the board. When you think of a winner he should come to mind, anyone would dream to win 11 championships in 13 seasons.
3. Kareem Abdul Jabbar
Formally known as Ferdinand Lewis Alcindor Jr invented the sky-hook. One of the hardest moves to defend in sports history, as Kareem shots the ball at the top of his arc and also keep it too far away from defenders to get. Also being lethal with both hands made it hard to predict where he was gonna go. He has six MYps, 15 times all NBA, and is a six-time champion. Additionally, he is the all-time leading scorer. Kareem will go down to most people as the most talented center to ever play the game with incredible length and footwork that is once in a generation
2. LeBron James
The biggest thing about him apart from the rest is, his career is not over. Although even if LeBron ended his career right now, he would still be in this spot. He is closing on Kareem’s all time points with being third and is also eight on all time scoring. Lebron can do it all from his thundering dunks, elite passing and high basketball IQ. Even at 35 years old he still seems to be in his prime and not stopping. A 15 time all-star and three time NBA champ, one that knocked off the best reason season record team in history. The title record of 3-5 is one hinder that keeps him from being number one on this list.
- Michael Jordan
Michael Jordan averaged 30.1 points per game over the course of his career and has won six titles. He is the most crafty, elite scorer in basketball game history. He could drive quick to the rim and change direction in and instance and stop on a dime and shoot a deadly midrange. The playmaking was incredible and could change the game in an instance. He had it all. Defense, scoring, passing you name it. He was a nine-time All-defensive and was the leader on the Chicago Bulls dynasty, one of the best dynasties of all time.
There is always been a debate over number one. I still believe it is Jordan because of his scoring and rings compared to LeBron. Though if LeBron had won some of those finals we might be having a different discussion. Although the same can be said about Jordan leaving to play baseball. Although we will never know with those what-ifs. Thank you for reading. -Martin Dale