LeBron James says his game has no similarities at all with Michael Jordan’s
As James approaches his 32nd birthday, it only took one comment from him to create headlines and reignite the never-ending debate. James is showing no signs of slowing down, and as he put in one of the greatest individuals finals performances last June, a reporter asked James on Thursday if he had studied how Michael Jordan adapted his game as he got older.
Jordan won three straight NBA championships and two MVP awards after his 33rd birthday, but James states he hasn’t studied how Jordan went about his game as he aged, via NBA.com delivered through CBS Sports.
“No, I haven’t,” James told reporters, “because our games are so different. He was much more of a scorer. And at that point, did a lot of post work at that point in time. But our games are just different. His body is different. My body is different than his. So it’s just, you recognize the dominance that someone had at that age. At that age, you recognize the dominance. But there’s no similarities in our game at all.”
Even the turnaround fadeaway jumper?
“No, it’s different,” James said. “He had much more lift in his fadeaway than mine. That was definitely a go-to move of his, but nah. Our games are completely different.”
James wasn’t taking a shot at Jordan, a person who he has had nothing but respect for, but rather, highlighting how different their playing styles are.
Jordan had a score-first mentality, whereas James is a pass-first superstar. This doesn’t mean Jordan couldn’t pass and James can’t score, because both players are world class in that respect also, but it’s their diverse way of approaching the game that differentiates the two.
This is one of the reasons why comparing James and Jordan becomes increasingly more difficult, because not only did they play different positions, but they are completely different players as well.
An NBA consensus is that Jordan was better than Lakers legend Kobe Bryant, but the comparison is made easier because both shared a scoring mentality, both played the same position, and Bryant mirrored Jordan’s game as he grew in the league.
When comparing “His Airness” with James, it’s a completely different ball game. James is likened more to a modern day Magic Johnson or Oscar Robertson. He is a hybrid. He is multifaceted superstar, who can do everything on the court, including center-type things whilst still possessing pure point guards skills in a 6’8″ frame.
This is why the comparison becomes a complex one, and an almost impossible one to answer.
Needless to say, this isn’t the last time the two legends will be brought up in comparison, and at the end of the day, it might come down to personal preference for who retires as the NBA’s GOAT.