One of the greatest debates in sports is between choosing LeBron James or Michael Jordan as
the GOAT. NBA fans and analysts have debated the statistics of both players and compared
playoff performances. While there may not be a clear-cut answer, it still doesn't prevent this
age-old argument each season. Fans of both sides have a firm opinion, and any new
developments are unlikely to change their position on the issue. However, let us dig deeper and
analyze the stats to determine which player is the GOAT.
#1 Championship Rings
Michael Jordan played in six NBA Finals during his career, while LeBron James has gone to a
total of nine NBA Finals. However, Michael Jordan won all six appearances, and LeBron James
has only won three out of the previous eight. Of course, James is currently in his ninth Finals
appearance, as his Cavaliers face a tough matchup with the Golden State Warriors. Many fans
of Michael Jordan use his undefeated Finals resume as proof that he will always be superior to
#2 Career Stats
LeBron James has played 15 seasons in the NBA with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat.
James has averaged 27.2 points, 7.4 rebounds, 7.2 assists, 1.6 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game
throughout his career. On the other hand, Michael Jordan played 15 years in the NBA primarily
for the Chicago Bulls and a brief two-year stint with the Washington Wizards. Jordan averaged
30.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, 5.3 assists, 2.3 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game. Both players have
similar stats, even though they played in different eras. Of course, LeBron James career is still
going strong, and he will continue to eclipse Jordan's career total of stats in all categories.
#3 Supporting Cast
LeBron James carried his team to the NBA playoffs early in his career, as the team primarily
relied on his playmaking abilities. This was especially true in 2007, as he carried an inferior
Cavs team all the way to the NBA Finals but was swept by the Tim Duncan led San Antonio
Spurs. However, LeBron James was part of one of the most talented teams in the NBA during
his tenure with the Miami Heat. The combination of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, and Chris
Bosh were too much for most teams to handle, as they went to the NBA Finals fours years in a
row and won two championships. Similarly, Jordan did not have a strong supporting cast early
in his career until Scottie Pippen joined the team which sparked a dominant run for the Chicago
Bulls throughout the 90's.
The GOAT debate in the NBA will continue to rage, as fans of both players have passionate
views regarding this subject. However, one thing is for certain, and that is both Jordan and
James are all-time great players that completely changed the landscape of the NBA. Of course,
LeBron's story isn't complete, and he still has a few seasons left to show the world why he
should be considered LeGOAT.