Depending on who you ask, LeBron James and Michael Jordan are the two names at the forefront at the greatest of all time debate, and that’s been especially in the aftermath of ESPN’s documentary series, “The Last Dance,” which highlighted Jordan’s unwavering hunger to win during his 13 seasons with the Chicago Bulls.
Whether it’s fair or not, James has been criticized for not having the same competitive spirit as Jordan, or even the late Kobe Bryant. However, James has garnered a reputation for being a better teammate than both Jordan and Bryant because of both his play style and his general temperament.
In a recent video for Uninterrupted, James talked about what he thought it would have been like to be teammates with Jordan from a basketball standpoint, and James said they would have been able to “work perfectly” together. Here’s the transcript of the video via Brian Windhorst of ESPN:
“Me personally, the way I play the game — team first — I feel like my best assets work perfectly with Mike,” James said in a video released Monday on Uninterrupted’s YouTube channel. “Mike is an assassin. When it comes to playing the game of basketball, scoring the way he scored the ball, [then] my ability to pass, my ability to read the game plays and plays and plays in advance.”
“I saw the things [Scottie Pippen] was able to do with Mike. I just think it would’ve been a whole nother level,” James said. “Pip was one of my favorite players ... It would’ve been a whole nother level with me being a point forward, with me being that point forward alongside of him during those Chicago runs.”
However, that doesn’t mean James wouldn’t have liked to compete against Jordan, and he made sure to clarify that in a tweet on Monday night:
I also would die to compete vs every single one of them too! Don’t ever get it twisted! . Nevertheless MJ Thank You for being my angel, inspiration, superhero!!— LeBron James (@KingJames) May 19, 2020
It sort of reminded me of this tweet that De’Aaron Fox sent out last week:
Jokes aside, it’s a little ridiculous that James had to come out and say that, but it’s a testament to how how much the perception of him changed after he left the Cleveland Cavaliers to team up with two All-Star players, and his awareness of that. Yes, he went back and won one with the Cavs in 2017, but it’s hard to imagine that means anything to the people that would get upset about something as stupid as this.
Perhaps one day we’ll be able to have a conversation about James and Jordan’s greatness without having to pin them against each other — probably not, but we can all dream, can’t we?