One of the more aggravating sports arguments, particularly in Baltimore, is the discussion that involves trying to compare the greatness of someone who played in one era vs. a player who didn’t play in that same time frame.
We come across that here whenever there’s a debate about Johnny Unitas. I say Joe Montana is the best quarterback I ever “saw” because I didn’t really see Johnny U at his zenith.
Lots of people say Jack Nicklaus was a better golfer than Tiger Woods. Nicklaus has 18 major titles; Woods has 14. I didn’t watch Jack in his prime, so I don’t know if he was a better “player” than Tiger.
The best baseball hitter I’ve ever seen is Ichiro Suzuki.
I wasn’t around to watch Ted Williams.
Different times. Different ballparks. Different players.
That said, I was around and watched with great intent the amazing play of Michael Jordan.
I was a HUGE fan of the NBA in the 80’s and 90’s when Jordan was ruling the game.
So, I can definitely say this and feel good about it: LeBron James might actually be a better “basketball player” than Jordan.
Offensively, Jordan may have the edge, still. James is a beast, but Jordan had that flair for the dramatic that no one in the league has been able to match since his departure.
And even though MJ was a terrific defensive player, he can’t hold LB’s jock when it comes to defending. Last night’s Game 7 win for the Heat was punctuated by LeBron’s suffocating defensive performance on Indiana’s Paul George. He completely took George out of the game, which is a huge reason why Miami won with ease.
Oh, and he also finished with 32 points. James, that is, not George.
Jordan still has more rings than James, of course. That might make him a better “winner” than LeBron.
I never, ever thought I would say this, having watched Michael Jordan tear people apart on the basketball court, but I think LeBron might be better.
Last night confirmed that.
It’s still too early to make a U.S. Open prediction, so I won’t.
But I have someone on my radar that is probably going to be worth a small “investment” in…if you know what I mean.
And, while he’s on my radar, he’s definitely “off” the radar, as the saying goes.
I’ll let you know who it is next week in case you want to pay for your son’s Calvert Hall tuition by placing a wager like I’m going to do.
You’ll say – “who?” – when I reveal his name. You won’t be saying that a couple of Sundays from now when he’s holding the trophy at Merion.
Why does everyone dislike Justin Bieber so much?
I don’t get it.
I don’t know anything about him – which might explain why I don’t dislike him – but what’s he done that’s so wrong?
I know why: As Morrissey sang — “We hate it when our friends become successful…”