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Lebron James is a better basketball player than Michel Jordan

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/6/2019 Category: Sports
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 544 times Debate No: 121703
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
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Lebron James has more rebounds and assists per game than Michael Jordan, A higher shooting percentage, 3 point percentage, And greater durability both in the regular season and playoffs.

When Lebron James was traded to the Miami Heat in 2010, His former team went from a 61-21 record to a 19-63 record.

When Michael Jordan retired for the first time the Chicago Bulls record went from a record of 57-25 to 55-27.

This is why Lebron James is a better player than Michael Jordan.


Your argument is very weak and this is why.

When talking about who's the greatest, You have to look at the entire body of work. First of all, The easiest way to settle this debate is to judge by what your eyes have seen. If you've ever watched Jordan play ball then you'd see that Lebron is no where on that level. You're basing this argument on random stats but stats are subjective. Are you aware that Lebron has played much longer than Jordan?

Higher percentage? Jordan shot 49% from the field for his career & most of those points came from jump shots. Lebron has never been a great or good jump shooter to begin with. Most of Lebron's % comes from playing under the rim such as put-backs and layups. . . Team record? Jordan played with who ever was on his team while Lebron stacks the deck by partnering with other superstars. That's a big difference.

Durability? Durability has nothing to do with skill. Lebron is simply accumulating stats from having a longer career while Jordan retired more than once which has decreased his total in stats because he didn't play ever year. . . I've basically destroyed your argument with simple facts.
Debate Round No. 1


I will address your counter arguments one at a time.

You stated that the easiest way to settle this debate is to judge what your eyes have seen. I've seen both players play and I still, Along with many millions of people that have seen both play, Believe that Lebron James is the better basketball player. Somehow we are to believe that because you think he is better, That he is better without any objective measure.

You then say I'm basing my argument on stats and that stats are subjective when it is in fact the exact opposite. Stats are the only objective measures we have in this argument, Everything else is merely opinion. Also, You bring up that Lebron James has played longer than Jordan which makes the fact that his statistical averages being higher than Jordan's even more impressive considering he's been beating on his body that much longer.

Higher shooting percentage? Yes that is a fact. We all have internet access here and it is quite easy to check and see that my statement is correct that Lebron James is a higher percentage shooter. It doesn't matter if it's a mid range jump shot or near the basket, It's still a 2 point basket. That still doesn't address that he is a better 3 point shooter than Jordan.

The team record is used to show the affect and impact of each player when they aren't on the team. Lebron James leaves a team and their win % drops astronomically, Jordan leaves the team and they are still one of the best teams in the NBA. Your comment about Lebron partnering with other superstars while Jordan played with whoever was on his team makes no difference to who is the better player. This is pure opinion, But if Lebron James had Scottie Pippen on his team and was coached by Phil Jackson, I don't think he'd go anywhere either.

You're right that durability has nothing to do with skill, But to reiterate it makes Lebron's stats even more impressive considering how long he's beat up his body. Also, You keep attacking the idea that Lebron has better total stats because he's played longer (which is true). However I've purposely used career averages to show that he is better regardless of his total stats.

To quote you;
I've basically destroyed your argument with simple facts.


You just said that stats are the only objective. What about actual level of skill? Leadership? Win percentage? Let's look at skill.
1. Better mid-range shooter: Jordan
2. Better ball handler: Jordan
3. Better finisher at the rim: Jordan
4. More Creative with the ball: Jordan
5. Better footwork: Jordan
6. Better free-throw shooter: Jordan
7. Bigger variety of moves: Jordan
8 And on & on

You can't make a case for Lebron without making yourself look foolish. Just on skill alone, Lebron looses easily. Yes, Age groups & eras can play a huge role in opinions but stats are highly objective and this is why.

Example: Kareem scored more career points than any player in history which is great but when you breakdown his total in career points you'll see that he only averaged 20ppg. Anyone that's logical will tell you that 20ppg is not dominate at all especially when you're over seven feet tall. Kareem played nearly 20 years which is why he ended up being the career leading scorer. This is why (Stats Are factually Subjective).

You said that Lebron's "physically taken a beating which makes it more impressive. " Are you aware that the NBA is far less physical than in the '90s? You're proving that you don't know anything about basketball. Sneezing on someone is a foul in today's game. . . Am I correct?

Opinion? Pippen started his career with the Bulls so how is that an opinion? Did Lebron purposely partner with Wade & Bosh in Miami? Name another superstar or coach that Jordan purposely partnered with? I'll wait. . . .

"So tell me something, The Playoffs are in effect right now but I seem to can't find Lebron anywhere. " Why is that?
Debate Round No. 2


Yes I said stats are the only objective measure because it's a fact. What metric are we measuring level of skill on? Or leadership (note that Phil jackson in his book '11 rings' states that Scottie Pippen was the actual leader of the Bulls and not Jordan)? And win percentage doesn't work because it's a team stat.

I'll play with you in skill just for fun by the way, It seems like your only argument for Jordan is that he's a more effective scorer than Lebron, But there are more skills than just scoring.
*I've made some revisions
1. Better mid-range shooter: Jordan
2. Better ball handler: Lebron by far
3. Better finisher at the rim: Lebron
4. More Creative with the ball: Jordan for scoring, Lebron for passing
5. Better footwork: Jordan
6. Better free-throw shooter: Jordan
7. Bigger variety of moves: Jordan
8 And on & on (we can't argue for and on and on with no actual statements)

Here are some more;
Better passer: Lebron
Better court vision: Lebron
Better rebounder: Lebron
Better 3 point shooter: Lebron
Better athlete (bigger, Faster, Stronger): Lebron
Better post player: Lebron

You use the example of Kareem based on career totals. We all know Lebron will dominate Jordan in career totals, No argument there. You are the one who seems obsessed with career TOTALS when I've purposely only mentioned career AVERAGES to avoid this. How many times do I need to repeat this?

Today's NBA is less physical, But they hit Lebron harder than almost anyone else in today's game.
And no, Sneezing on someone is not a foul in today's game (I know you're clearly being sarcastic).

I'm starting to wonder if you're even reading my arguments. I clearly wrote "This is pure opinion, But if Lebron James had Scottie Pippen on his team and was coached by Phil Jackson, I don't think he'd go anywhere either. " The opinion is that Lebron wouldn't have left Cleveland if he had Pippen and Jackson alongside him, How do you not get that? Where did I say that Pippen started his career on some team other than the Bulls?

Yes, Lebron partnered with Wade and Bosh. The whole point is that Jordan didn't need to go anywhere because his team was stacked before he even needed to think of leaving, Unlike Lebron's nightmare situation in Cleveland. Which by the way, Has absolutely no affect on who is a better basketball player.

Lebron isn't in the playoffs because he suffered his first serious injury this year (Jordan's was in year 2) and is on a weak team in a strong conference. Why weren't the Wizards in the playoffs when Jordan was on the team? (Obviously your excuse is because Jordan was an old man, Yet your first round argument is that you must look at a players whole body of work).

Lastly, Thanks for the debate. It was fun :D


In conclusion, You keep talking about stats, Averages, Metrics & if this player had that player on his team nonsense. The simple fact of the matter is that Lebron Will Never match what's written below.

Jordan: 6 Championships in which he went 6-0 in every Finals, 6x Finals MVPs, 1x Defensive Player of the Year, Led the league in steals 3x or more, Has the (Highest Scoring Average) in the regular season, Has the (Highest Scoring Average) in the playoffs, Has the (Highest Scoring Average) in the finals, Never played in a game 7 during the finals, 5x regular season MVPs, More 50 & 60 pt games than anyone in history, 10x Scoring Leader, Average 37. 1 ppg in a single season and the list goes on.

On the other hand, Lebron has 3x championships, 1x scoring leader, (Never) led the NBA in Steals, 4x regular season MVPs, (Never) Won Defensive Player of the Year and is 3-5 in the Finals, Which is a losing stat. . . He doesn't have a go-to move, Flops & complains on every play. Lol. . . Either stats or skill. . . Jordan dominates him & everyone else.

Well, You ask for the stats/averages and now you got them so be careful of what you ask for in the future. Thanks
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by Anonymous 2 years ago
4 months late but I feel this should be stated:
The 2017-18 Cavs are a different story, And the reason why they were so awful was squarely on Lebron demanding specific players receive awful contracts that put the team in a position where they could not move said underachieving players and free up cap space for better talent.

This is another problem I have with Lebron. His insistence on running his system with his guys is what destroys teams in the long run, While also preventing him from having more success in terms of championships. If he ran a more equal-opportunity system like Golden State and other teams have adopted, The Bron-MJ debate would be dead and buried right now.
Posted by Anonymous 3 years ago
I'm confident that my closing argument has sealed Lebron's fate because his stats/achievements are laughable when compared to Jordan.

Let's not forget that today's Eastern Conference Era is extremely weak which is why he made it to the Finals so many times. Fast-forward to May 2019 and the Western Conference has Lebron sitting at home on the couch.
Posted by Anonymous 3 years ago
Of course you would agree with the Cleveland comment, We can compare the affect of the trade from last year then.
Cavaliers are in the NBA Finals in the 2017-18 season, Lebron leaves and again we have a 19-63 record with far fewer changes to the roster and coaching staff.

Jordan might be more "resilient" in some ways, But it wasn't because of the Bulls so called struggles. His 4th year in the NBA and already had his most pivotal puzzle piece and arguably the second best player of the 90s (though not at that point) on his team in Scottie Pippen, Phil Jackson was assistant coach at the time and 2 years later the head coach.

There is no one even worth mentioning on the Cavaliers in LBJ's first run with the Cavs, Let alone the top 50 all time great Scottie P.

Also, The Bulls had already won their first championship by Jordan's 7th season so there was no need to go anywhere with such a stacked team. Whereas Lebron was literally carrying the entire team for 7 years with no championship to show for it before he said 'I'm out'.
Posted by Anonymous 3 years ago
I get what you're saying now. Jordan was certainly more resilient.
Posted by Anonymous 3 years ago
I agree with your Cleveland comment. I said that "Jordan played with who ever was on his team" because it's true. The bulls struggled early in his career but leaving wasn't an option. Rodman came during the 2nd three-peat.
Posted by Anonymous 3 years ago
I don't like the "Cavs were trash without Lebron" argument. That Cavs team experienced major changes after Lebron left, Including losing most of their top scorers and head coach. Meanwhile, The Bulls had extremely stable management, And kept all of their key pieces that allowed them to stay competitive after Jordan left.

Also don't like the "Jordan played with who ever was on his team" statement. I understand what you're getting at (Lebron effectively abandoned Cleveland while Jordan stayed with the Bulls when they struggled), But it still comes off as highly disrespectful to guys like Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman, Etc.
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