Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Michael Jordan vs. LeBron

I'm not sure if it's the first anonymous person to call me a dick, but I'd first like to let everyone know how happy I am about the commenter yesterday who said, "Wow you sound like a huge dick." I didn't realize my tame blog would ever turn me into the next Tucker Max, but apparently a story of me going to a public party that we actually bought tickets for, that I didn't even buy myself, and making fun of dumb panda hats makes me sound like a huge dick. I shudder to think what the anonymous commenter would do if they found their way to G$'s site, but I'm guessing it would be similar to Ace Ventura's shower after Ace finds out that Finkle is Einhorn:

Anyway, Michael Jordan came out with some interesting comments recently, and I think they're worth taking a look at. From ESPN.com:

"There's no way, with hindsight, I would've ever called up Larry [Bird], called up Magic [Johnson] and said, 'Hey, look, let's get together and play on one team,'" Jordan said after playing in a celebrity golf tournament in Nevada. The interview aired on the NBC telecast of the event. "But that's ... things are different. I can't say that's a bad thing. It's an opportunity these kids have today. In all honesty, I was trying to beat those guys."

Of course, everyone has an opinion about what Jordan said. Some say he's being a jerk because he didn't need to leave Chicago- Chicago brought pieces to him that won championships. Furthermore, I think D. Wade can be justifiably in the discussion when comparing the Heat 3:16 to Jordan, Magic and Bird, but in no way does Chris Bosh even come close. Jordan, Magic, and Bird were ALWAYS on winning teams. All of them had good rosters around them, but even with injuries, or other issues, none of those players allowed their teams to be mediocre. Chris Bosh's Toronto Raptors were nothing but mediocre during his tenure there- and they have had some decent rosters throughout the years. Bosh was never a player who could put a team on his back and will them to the playoffs- Bird, Magic and Jordan could.

Other people will say that Jordan is completely right. Jordan owned his legacy in Chicago because he stayed in Chicago as the "alpha dog" (I hate that term, but it works in this situation.) Jordan was so great, that he played with other great players yet no one ever questioned who the best player on the team (or in the league) was. Scottie Pippen is considered one of the "NBA's 50 Greatest Players" yet he was second fiddle to Jordan during their entire time as teammates in Chicago. No one questions that. You may try to make an argument that Jordan could not have won without Pippen, but you cannot argue that Jordan wasn't the leader of the team.

This may be another example of people over-analyzing an athlete's quotes. We're so concerned with having an opinion, that we sometimes forget that there is gray area in the middle. Jordan is competitive. He is still the same competitive guy that won 6 championships for the Bulls. The same guy that has lost thousands (millions?) of dollars gambling. He's the same guy that loves golf, thought he could make the Wizards great, and thought he could become a professional baseball player. Now that Jordan can't play basketball in the NBA anymore, he owns a team. He wants to compete any way he can and his comments are stemming from that. He wants to make sure everyone knows that LeBron took the easy way out. I'm not even sure he cares outwardly what everyone thinks, but inside, he believes that LeBron's move to the Heat instantly eliminated LeBron from contention of Jordan's title of "Greatest Player Ever." (There's this other guy named Kobe who has the best argument these days- though I'll take Jordan any day over Kobe.)

Jordan was good enough to stay right where he was on his own territory and let great players flock to him. Dennis Rodman, Ron Harper and Steve Kerr specifically came to play with Jordan during the latter three-peat. Players came to Jordan. Players knew that teaming with Jordan's Bulls was the easiest way to win rings.

With LeBron leaving Cleveland for Miami, he went from a place where he was the main guy to a team where Dwyane Wade has ALREADY won a championship. No matter how many championships this three-headed evil monster wins, Wade will always have one more than LeBron. For someone who wanted to be a global icon and better than Jordan, LeBron sure took an easy way out. He's now the Scottie Pippen to D. Wade's Jordan.

LBJ may end up being one of the "50 Greatest Players" when they revise the list, but he will never touch Jordan in legacy, competitiveness, or killer instinct. No amount of Heat championships or slightly vague or cocky comments by Michael Jordan can change that. Jordan is greater than LeBron, and LeBron cemented that fact by "taking his talents to Souf Beach." I believe that Jordan's comments this past weekend shows that Jordan knows his legacy is safe from LeBron's run with the Heat.


GMoney said...

Hey Bulls fan, it's "Pippen", not Pippin!!!

I just had to train this kid at work for a few hours...he will certainly be fired by the end of the week.

Tony B. said...

Dammit... that's a bad typo. The most embarrassing thing about that is that I'm fairly sure I spelled it that way because of the character Pippin in Lord of the Rings- which makes it even worse.

It's fixed now.

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