Why is LeBron James the new NBA GOAT, surpassing MJ, Kareem-Abdul Jabbar

LeBron James is among the best basketball players to have ever lived. He is also among the most well-liked athletes in the entire planet. He is so skilled at what he does that he has really been able to earn millions of dollars from his abilities alone.

LeBron James broke the all-time scoring record against OKC on February 7 Image Credits: Twitter
By Blesson Daniel | Mar 4, 2023 | 7 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

One little basket for man, one huge conclusion to the age-old sports debate. LeBron James eclipsed Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to become the NBA’s all-time top scorer on Tuesday night against the Oklahoma City Thunder, putting an end to a decades-long argument.

There is no need to apologize to those who still believe Michael Jordan is the greatest basketball player to ever play the game; James is now clearly and officially the best to ever do so. This feat, which was completed in front of a boisterous crowd at Crypto.com Arena with 10.9 seconds remaining in the third quarter on a fallaway jumper, wasn’t simply a victory for a superstar; it was the coronation of a King.

James not only surpassed 38,387 points, but he also scored more than 38,387 points in a discussion that is very certainly over. Remove the romantic Bulls-colored glasses, remove the mythology from the men, and the truth thunders down like a signature James tomahawk dunk.

LeBron James is one of the most divisive players in NBA history, if not all of sports history. He’s usually either your favorite or your favorite to despise, depending on the situation. Due in part to the nostalgia and aura around certain players who played in Chicago, Boston, and LA, some people believe him to be the best player ever, while others disagree. This is because they believe that he will never exceed those guys.

Could you believe LeBron is the GOAT? Don’t strike me yet. James is hated so intensely that it may be difficult to see the five main reasons why he deserves to be regarded as the best player ever.

1. LeBron James is capable of playing any position

LeBron James has spent his 20-year career as a shooting guard, small forward, power forward, and point guard. Now for the facts Now I’ll treat you with the most common media cliché, but also the most common fact. You’re probably sick of hearing it, but LeBron can play or defend any position.

He possesses the ball-facilitation abilities to play point guard, as well as the handling and scoring tenacity to play shooting guard and small forward. He also possesses the strength, power, and post-skill to play both power forward and center.

Never before in NBA history has there been a more versatile player. There are players who can play two or three positions, but only LeBron James can play all five.

READ MORE: Kobe Bryant’s crash photos suit settled by Vanessa Bryant for $28.85 million

2. Dominance in all statistical categories

James does not excel at individual statistics, but he is a fantastic all-around player. He is no. 1 all-time on the scoring chart. He also ranks 4 all-time in assists, leading all forwards in that statistic. Point guards are the only players ahead of LeBron. James is also ranked 10th all-time in terms of steals.

These are three statistics in which LeBron is in the 10 for all-time, as opposed to Michael Jordan, who only ranks in the top ten in two. Jordan isn’t statistically significant in any way. Jordan winning 6 finals in 6 appearances has been the main reason he was the GOAT but statistically, King James is the KING.

3. Monster standing at 6’8

In the NBA, there has never been a player who is more physically ideal than James. He is 6’8″ tall with a muscular build. LeBron is one of the league’s quickest players despite being a big guy. LeBron is capable of anything and everything in this league, so his vertical skills shouldn’t be discounted either.

His ability to constantly identify the open player or the best shot demonstrates his excellent basketball IQ, which feeds into his ability to foster a winning atmosphere. James may not be the greatest Laker of all time, but when he surpassed Kareem while donning a Lakers uniform to break the impossible, he became the greatest basketball player in history.

4. LeBron James’ impact on a team

James spent the first seven years of his career with the Cleveland Cavs, as we are all aware. He has taken them to the postseason in five of the previous seven seasons. In fact, he guided them to two consecutive seasons of having the best record in the league, including his final one.

Once James left, the Cavaliers changed from perennial playoff challengers to perennial candidates for the top selection. The Heat, on the other hand, made the Finals each year that James was there and took home two titles. The Heat endured a decline to a lower seed and ultimately was eliminated from the playoffs after James left. You should be able to tell how big of an influence LeBron makes on a team just from this.

5. Dominating for 20 Years and still counting

Just four times in his career, two with the Lakers and two with the Cavaliers, has LeBron James failed to make the playoffs. LeBron has currently made it to the NBA Finals 10 times, which indicates that in his 20 seasons, he spent half of that time there. Throughout that period, he has won four NBA Championships, four MVP awards, four Finals MVP awards, and two Olympic gold medals. That is how the King affects a team, whether it be the Cavaliers, Heat, or Lakers.

LeBron James will remain immortal in the hearts of NBA fans

LeBron James presented his argument for immortality under the retired jersey of Magic Johnson and in the iconic building Kobe Bryant made famous. James became the highest scorer in NBA history with an 18-foot fadeaway jumper late in the third quarter. While the sold-out, celebrity-studded audience erupted in applause, many would concede that they were also praising the greatest player the league had ever seen.

The GOAT discussion will always remain a contentious topic best left to barrooms and barbershops. Supporters of Michael Jordan are steadfast in their beliefs. There are also many supporters of Wilt Chamberlain and Bill Russell, two famous figures from a bygone age. Each has a strong argument. Jordan’s flawless Finals record, Wilt’s astounding season averages, and Russell’s victories. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar performed an apparently unattainable shot while sitting courtside. James has accomplished more, though, in 20 NBA seasons.

LeBron James or Michael Jordan, Who is the Greatest?

James has won four NBA titles. Four MVPs. more postseason points than any other NBA player in history. And now, nearly four decades of Abdul-dominance Jabbar as the NBA’s all-time leading scorer during the regular season are in the past. Like Joe DiMaggio’s hitting streak or Wayne Gretzky’s career point total, Abdul-scoring Jabbar’s record was formerly regarded as one of the sport’s unbreakable marks. There is no way of knowing how large of a gap James, a self-described pass-first playmaker, will create between them.

Supporters of Michael Jordan will refer to his impressive 6-0 Finals record, yet before his victories over Phoenix, Seattle, and Utah, Jordan lost to Milwaukee, Boston, and Detroit in the first round of the playoffs. Each time the Bulls made it to the Finals, Jordan’s team was the betting favorite, with James frequently entering the game as the underdogs. That isn’t meant to diminish Jordan’s accomplishments so much as to point out that James’s record of 4-6 in Finals is really more amazing.

GOAT – James or Jordan is a debate

James will be criticized for choosing his team’s personnel carefully and for bouncing between Cleveland and Miami before settling in Los Angeles. Jordan didn’t, though, because he didn’t have to switch teams. Scottie Pippen’s potential was recognized by Hall of Fame general manager Jerry Krause, who also brought John Paxson, Horace Grant, and Dennis Rodman to the Bulls.

Jordan was playing for Phil Jackson, and the offense was designed with his skills in mind. At least one title has been won on each of James’ NBA trips despite the fact that he has changed coaches, players, and systems several times. He has the most buzzer-beating playoff game victories in NBA history with five—two more than Michael Jordan.

Jordan has five less seasons of playing time than James, which is sometimes used as a stick in the great GOAT argument. Jordan’s prime years may not have been comparable to James’s, but James has fared better in his latter years. Jordan played for the Wizards until his late 30s, putting up statistics for a struggling franchise. No one disputes that James is still capable of leading a team to a championship with better health and a stronger roster, despite the Lakers’ struggles this season. There is no reason to doubt that James, 38, can continue to play at a high level far into his 40s.

No matter how many points James scores or how many championships he wins, the argument isn’t resolved because it can never be. The NBA’s all-time top scorer was once one of the league’s biggest winners and is now one of its best playmakers. Great work, there. This is why he is one of the GOAT, if not the GOAT.

Top 10 highest NBA scorers

1LeBron James38,450
2Kareem Abdul-Jabbar38,387
3Karl Malone36,928
4Kobe Bryant33,643
5Michael Jordan32,292
6Dirk Nowitzki31,560
7Wilt Chamberlain31,419
8Shaquille O’Neal28,596
9Carmelo Anthony28,289
10Moses Malone27,409

Watch below LeBron James’ greatest plays

Get the latest from Sportslumo.com by following us on InstagramTwitter, and YouTube

Related Post