During his career, Shaquille O’Neal had the opportunity to play with the greatest players of his generation: Anfernee Hawarday, Dwyane Wade, Steve Nash or Kevin Garnett, and of course Kobe Bryant and LeBron James. Interviewed by Dan Patrick, « Shaq » did not hesitate to give his opinion on LeBron James by comparing him to Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan.
« I’ve played with Kobe and I’ve played with LeBron, » O’Neal said, « Kobe has that killer instinct. I think I would pick Kobe over LeBron. »
« LeBron is closer to Magic Johnson. »
Same thing between James and Jordan. Bill Laimbeer had said he would build a team around LeBron over Jordan because he has that ability to make others better. For O’Neal, Jordan remains above the rest.
« I would pick Mike. Mike, like Kobe, has that determination and killer instinct that makes him unstoppable when he has a goal to achieve. People try too hard to compare LeBron to Jordan but he’s closer to Magic Johnson. If he needs to take over the game, he can do it. But he’s very smart, doesn’t force the game, and also relies on others. »