The LeBron James debate must end: James is the best basketball player on the planet
Sports fans love to debate. This is part of the excitement of sports, arguing over which players are better in their respective game or position. One that has become surprisingly popular pits second-year star LeBron James against several other greats, including Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady and others. It’s surprising not only because LeBron is so young, so most people would exclude him, but also because it really shouldn’t be an argument at all.
That’s right. This is a no-brainer. Stop all the discussion, debate, and vaguely constructed ideas that other National Basketball Association players are better than LeBron James. I’m here to tell you today that there is no reasonable debate: LeBron James is hands down the best basketball player on planet Earth!
Okay, before your pile on your age, lack of experience, and the fact that you haven’t won a title yet, like Kobe and others, let’s consider the best barometer of a great basketball player.
True great players possess all the fundamental skills: shooting, passing, handling the ball, bouncing, blocking shots, and defending. Now, players like Kobe, McGrady and Kevin Garnett certainly have these abilities. But to truly separate the players, we must go beyond these skills. Consider two more factors: the ability to dominate in any position and improve all the players around you. This is the true test of greatness. This is LeBron James.
Larry Bird had it, Magic Johnson had it, and Michael Jordan certainly had it. Kobe? I say no. McGrady? Definitely not. Garnett can, but he still has too many 14-point, 9-rebound nights in a losing effort to say he definitely does.
Now, consider LeBron James. The skills are unquestionable. He averages 25 points, almost 8 rebounds and just under 8 assists per game, in just his second year in the league, at the tender age of 20. He is the youngest to score 40, to get a triple-double, to start in a All Star Game, and the list grows every night you play.
Consider further the fact that at 6-8 and a muscular 240 pounds and with astonishing speed, quickness and jumping ability, LeBron James can handle the ball like a point guard, shoot like the most decent (not great, yet) out. guard and post. with the best forwards and centers in the NBA. He blocks shots like a center, he can block anyone, with his size and speed, and he gets to the basket and fouls better than anyone. He creates a mismatch every night, because he is completely helpless.
Finally, in just his sophomore year, he has led a team that won 17 games before his arrival at a rate of 50 wins. And for the first time since the early 1990s, the Cavaliers are now a legitimate playoff contender. I doubt any coach in the league wants to face the Cavaliers and LeBron James in a seven-game series.
So when people want to talk about the best players in the game, tell them to forget any arguments that don’t start and end with the name LeBron James.