Tag Archives: basketball

What is one popular argument about the Lebron v. Jordan debate that you don’t agree with?

Finals Records

This argument really only came up around 2016 or so, when Lebron started getting into the GOAT argument. Jordan fans then started focusing on the one stat Lebron would never be able to reach: 6–0. That’s Jordan’s finals record. An impossible to attain goal for Lebron since he had already lost 4 Finals at that point. Lebron haters would keep saying 3–4, 3–5, and now 3–6!

But what does it really matter? Do Finals losses really matter? No, it doesn’t. Nobody cares about that. We remember what players won not what they lost. Nobody cares that Jerry West lost 9 Finals. Magic and Kareem got swept in the Finals twice just like Lebron, but no one ever brings that up.

But the most obvious reason why Finals losses don’t matter is because you need to be in the Finals in the first place to lose in the Finals. Going to the Finals means you beat 3 teams in a 7 game series to get there. Focusing on Finals losses implies that losing before the Finals would be better – an absurd statement. Obviously you need to be in the Finals to have a chance to win a championship.

Jordan lost in the first round many times before making the Finals – by then he already had a really good team. Lebron did not have the luxury of making the Finals with really good teams. Because the “East is Weak” he coasted to the Finals with subpar teams against Western juggernauts – hence the 6 Finals losses.

Even more absurdly, some fans even think going to less Finals is better than going to more Finals if you have a losing record. As in, John Stockton’s 0–2 record makes him worse than Steve Nash’s 0–0 record. That’s ridiculous. Stockton went to 2 more Finals than Nash. Stockton has a better Finals record. He won more playoff games as well. By this logic, I am apparently a better player than Lebron since I never lost in the Finals 0–0 > 3–6 right?

I’m pretty sure the whole Finals Record is an argument made to embarrass Lebron against Jordan and there’s pretty much no other reason why it exists and no other context or player in which fans mention Finals record. 
Also, ironically Lebron’s Finals Record will remain untouched this year as he won’t make the playoffs.

What should be the top 3-5 criteria that an NBA player should meet to be considered as a plausible candidate for GOAT (greatest Of All Time) by you?

  1. Championships. This is the main reason why Bill Russell is in the GOAT convo and a big reason why Jordan and Kareem is in it as well.
  2. Stats This is the main reason why Wilt Chamberlain is in the GOAT convo, and a big reason why Jordan (#1 in PPG), Kareem (#1 in total points) and Lebron (top 10 in points and assists) is in it as well.
  3. Awards MVPs, scoring titles, rebounding titles, assist titles, Finals MVPs, All-NBA, All-Defensive, unlike championships are individual awards and all count when talking about the GOAT convo. Russell/Wilt/Jordan/Lebron/Kareem all have plenty in this category.

The top 5 GOAT candidates for me are: Jordan (obviously), Wilt, Kareem, Lebron, Russell

here are why some other great players are usually not in the GOAT convo:

Larry Bird – has the championships and awards but stats are below the top 5 (doesnt lead in any category)

Magic Johnson – has the championships and awards, and has the stats (top 5 in assists, highest APG). Magic is in the GOAT convo by alot of people and was in my top 5 before Lebron won his 3rd championship in 2016.

Kobe Bryant – has the championships, but does not do better than Jordan in anything (except total points where he is ahead by only one spot), and also lacks the awards compared to top 5.

Tim Duncan – has the championships and awards and top 10 in rebounds but stats are lacking compared to top 5.

Hakeem Olajuwon – has the stats, top 10 in blocks and steals, but lacks in championships and awards compared to top 5.

Bob Cousy – has the championships, but lacks in awards and stats compared to top 5.

Shaq – has the championships, top 10 in points but awards/stats are below the top 5

Dr J – has the championships and awards but stats are below the top 5 (doesnt lead any category)

Jerry West – has the stats but lacks the awards and championships (no MVP, only 1 ring)

Oscar Robertson – has the stats but lacks the awards and championships (1 mvp, 1 ring)

What is the most clutch play in NBA history?

1965 – John Havlicek steals the ball! Havlicek stole the ball – Wikipedia

1970 -Jerry West launched a shot from beyond half court to send the game to overtime in Game 3 against the Knicks (3 point shots didn’t exist in NBA at that time)

1974 – Kareem Abdul-Jabbar made a clutch skyhook in Game 6 to send the game into overtime against the Celtics.

1976 – Game 5 with the triple overtime. 1976 NBA Finals – Wikipedia so many things happened in that play you have to read the wiki to find out

1987 – Larry Bird famously steals an inbounds pass from Isiah Thomas in Game 5 of the Semifinals, and passes it to Dennis Johnson who seals the win

1987 – Magic Johnson with his ‘baby skyhook’ in the closing moments of Game 4 of the Finals, winning it against the Celtics

1998 – Michael Jordan’s famous push off of Byron Russell and steal off of Karl Malone to hit that last shot in Game 6 of the Finals versus the Jazz

2000 – Game 7, the Lakers comeback against the Trailblazers in the Semifinals ended with a clutch alley oop pass from Kobe to Shaq

2007 – Lebron James carries the Cavs past the Pistons in Game 5 of the Semifinals, scoring the last 29 out of 30 points

2013 – Ray Allen hits a clutch shot to send the game into overtime against the Spurs in Game 6 of the Finals

2016 – Lebron James with a game saving block on Andre Iguodala in Game 7 of the Finals along with Kyrie’s clutch 3 pointer to seal the game against the Warriors