LEBRON JAMES – MICHAEL JORDAN – KOBE BRYANT
THE FIRST 12 YEARS
When growing up, Lebron James had always dreamed of becoming the greatest basketball player ever. However he knew that Michael Jordan had already cemented himself with one of the game’s greatest legacies, and Kobe Bryant was a work in progress.
How could anyone compare with an NBA living legend that won all six times during NBA Finals appearances, and catch up with another who had just won five out of 7? Well to fairly compare the three NBA players, we look at the first 12 years which is the snapshot of Lebron James career to date.
Did you know Lebron has started all but one game he has played in? Lebron’s only non start was in a regular season game as he started 910 out of 911 regular season games, an accomplishment neither Michael or Kobe have achieved. Lebron James started all 178 playoff games he has played in by comparison Michael Jordan started 837 out of 848 regular season games, and all 158 playoff games. Kobe Bryant wasn’t so fortunate in his first 12 seasons he started only 718 out of 866 regular season games, and only 132 out of 152 playoff games.
When it came to scoring in the regular season and or playoffs, no one did it better than Michael Jordan. In his first 12 seasons he scored 26,920 points in regular season, and 5,307 in playoffs. Lebron James follows having scored 24,913 in regular season, and 5,020 in the playoffs. Kobe Bryant actually was third having scored only 21,619 in regular season, and 3,686 in playoffs.
Lebron James however showed he was more than just a scorer, as he loved to get his teammates involved. Lebron as expected dwarves all the three in assists as he recorded 6,301 during the regular season and 1,188 in the playoffs. Jordan also understood the importance of his teammates and recorded 4,729 in regular season and 948 in the playoffs. Third yet again Kobe recorded 4,002 during the regular season and 703 in the playoffs.
Not only was Michael tops in scoring but also with steals as he had 2,165 during the regular season, and another 344 in the playoffs. Lebron follows having recorded 1,553 during the regular season, and 305 in the playoffs. Kobe Bryant yet again was third having only recorded 1,321 during the regular season and 209 in the playoffs.
Lets take a look at the individual awards these NBA superstars have earned. Both Lebron James and Michael Jordan won rookie of the year. Allen Iverson won the rookie of the year award during Kobe Bryant’s rookie season.
Michael Jordan won the slam dunk championship not once but twice in back to back years. Kobe won the slam dunk championship once as well. Lebron has never participated in the event despite having everyone around the world wanting him to do so. While Lebron has led the league in scoring points per game one season, Kobe Bryant has done so twice, and Michael Jordan has done so nine times!
To Further Define Greatness amongst these superstars even further accomplished in their first twelve years. Michael Jordan was a Five Time NBA Champion is his first twelve seasons, combined with Five NBA FINALS MVP Trophies, and Four NBA Regular Season MVP Awards. Lebron was a Two Time NBA Champion having won Two NBA FINALS MVP Trophies, and Four NBA Regular Season MVP’s as well. Kobe Bryant is a Three Time NBA Champion having garnered just One NBA Regular Season MVP Trophy.
So how could one overcome an NBA Legend that has went to six NBA Finals and not lost one championship series? Lebron has been to six NBA Finals as of now, having won only two but has been to the last five straight NBA Finals. Something Michael Jordan and neither Kobe Bryant has ever done. Could Michael Jordan have went to eight straight NBA Finals? however he left the NBA to play baseball, leaving us to wonder what could have been. Could Kobe Bryant have won more if he had not run Shaq out of town, and or get injury prone his last two seasons? Anything is easy to imagine. Granted the book is not complete for Kobe Bryant, however his window of opportunity is closing fast if it hasn’t closed already.
Lebron James is clearly up for the challenge to complete his goal of becoming the world’s greatest basketball player ever! His legacy has been enhanced by returning to the Cleveland Cavaliers and getting them back to the finals! Now can he lead the Cavaliers to their first ever NBA title?
Michael Jordan’s Greatness goes unmatched when it comes to winning championships. However Lebron’s desire and commitment to want to be greater has shown to the world that he is the World’s Greatest Player actively playing in the NBA. Lebron James Has The Possibility Of Outshining All Of Them But Here In Ohio One Championship With The Cleveland Cavaliers Would Be Comparable To The Dynasties of the Bulls, Celtics, Lakers, and Spurs!
written by Michael Rachubka