“LeBron James by Far”: Gary Payton Puts Michael Jordan-LeBron James Comparisons to Rest

Published 04/19/2021, 4:59 PM EDT
Mar 7, 2021; Atlanta, Georgia, USA; Team LeBron forward LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers (23) is introduced before the 2021 NBA All-Star Game at State Farm Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Ever since his debut in the league, LeBron James’ legacy and his play-style, everything has been compared to NBA legend Michael Jordan. Even before making his debut in the NBA, he was dubbed as the heir to MJ’s throne.

18 years later, those conversations haven’t stopped. LBJ has already proven himself as one of the most supreme athletes on planet and continues to dominate the league even now.

He might have won less number of trophies compared to Jordan, but ‘The King’ surely makes a case for himself to be considered as the greatest to ever play the game.

Gary Payton compares LeBron James and Michael Jordan’s play style

While fans might be quick to compare and pick out flaws in LeBron’s game, his comparisons to Jordan might be unfair majority of the times. Legendary point guard Gary Payton spoke about the same recently.

In an appearance at Scoop B Radio, ‘the Glove’ rather had an interesting take on the Bron and MJ comparisons. “Two different basketball players. Michael Jordan was a guy who he’s gonna make big shots, he’s gonna take the ball every time and shoot it every time he has to.”

“I think LeBron is an all-around basketball player if you ask me who’s the better all-around basketball player LeBron James by far he does everything you know what I’m saying he passes the ball better than Jordan, he could 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 uh they’re two different basketball players and you can’t just say two different basketball players.” 

Feb 28, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) takes the ball down court in the second half of the game against the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

While Bron had showed his potential as a good playmaker, the 36-year-old has certainly developed it over the years. This was visible last season itself as he led the league in assists averaging 10.2 assists per game.

LeBron James might not be a dominant scorer as Michael Jordan, but he surely has many other facets to his game. With some years left in his illustrious career, it will be intriguing to see what else LBJ wins before he hangs up his boots.


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Aditya Mohapatra

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Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.