The NBA community can’t get enough of the GOAT debate. The most prevalent names in this argument remain the likes of LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan.
Whether it’s people comparing Michael Jordan’s rings and impeccable scoring, Kobe’s mastery of the two-way game or LeBron’s extended, record-breaking all-around game, there’s no doubt why three of these names have been a constant in the GOAT debate.
Kelly Oubre Jr. reveals why Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant are GOATs
New Warriors addition Kelly Oubre Jr. recently made an appearance on the Complex Sports podcast. There, the 25-year-old explained why he considers Michael Jordan to be the GOAT of the NBA.
Oubre said, « Mike is obviously the GOAT, due to the simple fact that he just wouldn’t deny it every time he was denied. He’s been through a lot of injuries; he’s played a lot of things that people don’t even know about and he got his championship rings in a hurry with the best winning percentage by making it to the Finals and taking over games, taking over an entire era.
The 6’7 ″ forward also explained why players like LeBron James of the modern NBA era should not be considered the GOAT.
« I think today’s game is a little bit softer. To call anyone a GOAT these days is pretty disrespectful to the hard-earned awards and accolades that Mike and Kobe earned because they really had to grind it out and earn it. People changed the rules just to stop them. »
While Oubre makes a great point of the league becoming less robust, dismissing players like LeBron James or any other modern NBA player from the GOAT debate might be going too far.
Why LeBron James deserves to be in the GOAT debate
LeBron James has been playing basketball for over 18 years now. In his time in the NBA, « The King » has seen the game change tremendously. From playing in a rugged defensive premier league to an explosive offense, LBJ has thrived in all settings.
His versatility and adaptability to the changing game has made him expendable. While most NBA players retire or massively regress at age 36, James has continued to dominate the league. Currently, he is averaging 25.4 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game.
With Bron still at his peak, there is no stopping the number of awards anytime soon. He is in a great frame with the Lakers with a well-rounded supporting cast and a second superstar in Anthony Davis.
Given James’ impeccable resume and ever-growing accolades, LBJ definitely deserves to be in the ultimate GOAT conversations.