For many years Michael Jordan was regarded by most fans as the unquestionable greatest basketball player of all time.
That all changed when LeBron James entered the league.
Although he has yet to secure as many titles as Jordan, his skillset and unique talent have turned him into the new generation’s GOAT.
That has led to many conversations and debates regarding who is better between Jordan and James.
During a recent interview with Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson on the Scoop B Radio Podcast, Seattle Sonics legend Payton gave his thoughts on who the better player was and is.
His answer was pretty surprising.
LeBron James, MJ comparisons unfair says @GaryPayton: “Two totally different basketball players. Jordan was a guy that he was going to make big shots. He’s going to take the ball every time and shoot it every time he has to. I think LeBron is an all around basketball player.” pic.twitter.com/2vAuybRdRe
— Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson (@ScoopB) April 19, 2021
“Two different basketball players,” Payton said.
“Jordan was a guy who, he’s going to make big shots, he’s going to take the ball every time and shoot it every time he has to. I think LeBron is an all-around basketball player … if you asked me, ‘Who’s the better all-around basketball player?’ LeBron James by far.
“He does everything. He passes the ball better than Jordan, He can dribble it, I think, a little bit better than Jordan … shooting-wise, I don’t think so. Rebounding I think he did, but Jordan did rebound. But they’re two different basketball players.”
— Game 7 (@game7__) April 19, 2021
A lot of NBA legends have weighed in on this debate. Hakeem Olajuwon had one opinion. Shawn Kemp had another.
Even non-basketball players like Floyd Mayweather Jr. have offered their takes.
Until James retires, the answer to “who’s better” will likely depend on who you ask. Once he calls it a career and we see how many titles he ended up with, however, it should become much easier to draw a definitive conclusion.
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