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bird? lebron is way more athletic. passing/court vision should be about equal. bird had much more consistent jumper. not more range, but a better shot. bird came to a good team and contributed at PF immediately. had a good college basketball education.

magic? lebron is way more athletic. lebron's shot is already better. court vision has to go to magic, but probably just barely within a few years. magic's game sense and ability to run the point is way more advanced than lebrons right now. had a good college basketball education. contributed immediately in a big way to a good team.

jordan? jordan and lebron's athleticism as compared to other players of their time is probably equal. both are inconsistent and stupid at times as rookies but both can just posterize you on any given play. jordan's shot might have been a touch better, and his general game intensity was a little higher. lebrons' passing is way ahead of young jordans. jordan scored a lot of points on a bad team but they didn't win anything of consequence for several years.

it's pretty obvious that james does not match up properly for comparison to any of these players. none of them play the same style nor have his strengths and weaknesses.

he does however have elements of all 3 of them in his game, and that's why people are excited. he has bird's ability to come down and extract points from the offense by either scoring or dishing. he has jordan's ability to posterize you and demoralize you with his physical gifts. and he has magic's ability to do a beautiful full-court bounce pass to a streaking player who hasn't even arrived there yet.

throw some game management skills in there, some defense, and another scorer or two and you have a formidable presence, and not just in the east.

i think he's the prototype for a future nba superstar. if i made a little boy right now i'd start him on the lebron diet and the lebron training program!

raz .::.
 

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lebron has parts of all of them in his game.

i don't think he quite has birds passing or court vision (which i think was pretty on par with magic's overall) at this point. he certainly doesn't have his range.

and he doesn't have jordan's quickness at this point, and likely never will.

his advantage is that he is a combo of these guys. although he doesn't have the top skills of any of them (meaning, he doesn't have birds shot, magic or birds overall passing, or jordan's overall athleticism), he does have many of their skills, and in a chiseled frame.
 

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I agree with your overall point but I have some quibbles. For starters, Bird had much more range than Lebron. He could shoot the ball from pretty much anywhere with precision. AT this point, Lebron doesn't have that kind of range. I'm not sure if he'll ever have that type of range but then again, most players don't. As KFLO pointed out, Bird was on par with Magic as far as court vision. He was a great passer too but Magic was the more dramatic passer. He did things with a flair so it looked better. Lebron has the potential to be a great passer but he's not quite as good as Bird and Magic yet. Lets give him some time before we put him in their class. Also, regarding Magic's shot, I'd say he and Lebron are somewhat similar. Neither guy had exceptional range. Magic could shoot the 3 but that wasn't really his forte. However, Magic was a 51% career shooter. That is attributable to his overall basketball intelligence and his post skills. He took smart shots and had an array of moves he could use in the post. Lebron will become a smarter player with time but I would like to see him use his body more. He's huge and athletic and should abuse guards in the paint. I'd like to see him go to that move more often since his jumper is erratic right now. I think the MJ-Lebron comparison is the worst. Both are great athletes but Jordan was just in a different class. MJ was a smaller guy and a much quicker player than Lebron. The speed, explosiveness, and fluidity that he brought to the table was incredible. Those are traits that you typically don't find in bigger players. Lebron is a great athlete in his own right but he'll never be the same player the Jordan was. They are different types of athletes. However, he's bigger and stronger than Jordan ever was and is starting his basketball career at 18. I think the thing that excites everyone the most is that Lebron is a combination of every great perimeter player. Typically, players either have great athleticism, great skills, great size, or great instincts. Some have a few of the above. Rarely will you ever find a player that has everything. Lebron is one guy that has everything. However, he's not even close to realizing his potential yet. In a couple of years he'll become what everyone wants him to be. For now, I think we'll have to settle for streaks and flashes of greatness.
 

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First I have to ask, where do you get the idea that Lebron's shooting is already better than Magic's.

Have you ever seen Magic play??

Magic as a rookie was way ahead of Lebron in shooting department. He just didn't shoot much. His FG % was 53% while Lebron's is only 40%. Same with Jordan, he shot 51% and averaged almost 30 points per game as a rookie.

Both were miles ahead of Lebron in shooting department and everything else. Neither of those guys should be considered as great shooters like Peja, but they could knock down open mid to long range jumpers. Lebron is absolutely attrocious and horrible when it comes to shooting. I have already seen more airballs by Lebron than I saw from Magic during his entire career. The only thing worse than Lebron in shooting department would be watching Chris Dudley shoot free throws. Jordan was quicker and more athletic. Magic was simply more fluid, quicker in recognizing situations on the court and making right, quick decisions at the right time. He created easy baskets for his teammates. Lebron's assists are mostly just simple hand over the ball and Ilgauskas shoots from 20 feet away. Shouldn't even count as assists, 90% of them. And Lebron is slow in his head. He's predictable and doesn't recognize court situations until it's too late. That is why Silas finally recognizes that Lebron can't be a point guard.

Larry Bird on the other hand was a great shooter and possesed an incredible basketball IQ, that is the guy who had court awareness and quick mind which compensated for all of his athletic deficiencies. There is no way in hell Lebron should ever be mentioned in the same sentence with Larry Bird. It's sacrilege.
 

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I know. Most people aren't interested in the truth.

They prefer to remain in their little fantasy world.
 

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Why would anyone want to listen to you? Most of the time you seem to hate NBA basketball as a whole, except for Peja. You're extremely negative and judgmental. What do you think is persuasive or interesting about your point of view at all?
 

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no deal

i've seen magic play plenty. i grew up watching magic, bird, and jordan play. i've seen all three of them play in person. don't worry about my credibility, it's there if you need to hear about it. lebron is already a better 'scorer' than magic. not a better percentage shooter because he isn't as smart a player as magic. yeah he takes some stupid shots. but he takes, and nails, some damn good shots with good defense on him. defenders are already afraid of him. i hate the airballs too but 40% aint too bad for now considering everything he's being asked to do. he has games where he shoots over 50% and he has the scoring swagger that jordan had. do you really think lebron would have that much trouble dropping 60+ if he set out to? if that's what it takes to beat someone like the celts in a playoff series he could and would. you can't tell me his offense is so anemic that he can only score 30+ three times in a row. don't say one dimensional... the numbers don't lie. as far as him being stupid? um, yeah, that's it. he's a big dummy. if he's a dummy what's that make us? he seems to have things pretty together in his life.

maybe you should spend some more time watching espn classic and non-national cavs games because if you think those guys were actually "miles" ahead of lebron in every other department you have a warped sense of the past. we all know there's no better car than your first 1988 cavalier or whatever it was. jordan couldn't pass like lebron his rookie year (if ever). magic couldn't go to the rack through 3 defenders like lebron, ever. and bird couldn't go coast to coast and finish like lebron, ever. so in certain categories he's already better, or at least showing great potential. i'm being patient and having fun playing 'what if'. you are just a hater.

i ain't saying he's better, calm down. i'm saying he's worthy of comparison. nevus and futurevixsten and other rational people here seem to agree. he's got a long way to go and a lot to learn and it should be awesome to watch.

oh by the way....... lebron > peja. get them two to meet on any court in the world. two men, one basketball. one hell of a game. peja has got a ton of game for sure. would give my little lbj a workout. but my money would be on lebron.

raz .::. *edited*

Originally posted by <b>therealdeal</b>!
First I have to ask, where do you get the idea that Lebron's shooting is already better than Magic's.

Have you ever seen Magic play??

Magic as a rookie was way ahead of Lebron in shooting department. He just didn't shoot much. His FG % was 53% while Lebron's is only 40%. Same with Jordan, he shot 51% and averaged almost 30 points per game as a rookie.

Both were miles ahead of Lebron in shooting department and everything else. Neither of those guys should be considered as great shooters like Peja, but they could knock down open mid to long range jumpers. Lebron is absolutely attrocious and horrible when it comes to shooting. I have already seen more airballs by Lebron than I saw from Magic during his entire career. The only thing worse than Lebron in shooting department would be watching Chris Dudley shoot free throws. Jordan was quicker and more athletic. Magic was simply more fluid, quicker in recognizing situations on the court and making right, quick decisions at the right time. He created easy baskets for his teammates. Lebron's assists are mostly just simple hand over the ball and Ilgauskas shoots from 20 feet away. Shouldn't even count as assists, 90% of them. And Lebron is slow in his head. He's predictable and doesn't recognize court situations until it's too late. That is why Silas finally recognizes that Lebron can't be a point guard.

Larry Bird on the other hand was a great shooter and possesed an incredible basketball IQ, that is the guy who had court awareness and quick mind which compensated for all of his athletic deficiencies. There is no way in hell Lebron should ever be mentioned in the same sentence with Larry Bird. It's sacrilege.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Nevus</b>!
therealdeal: Nobody is interested in what you have to say. Honestly. Don't waste your time.
I am. I don't agree with a lot of what he says and he is obnoxious sometimes, but he backs up his posts with facts and observations, which is more than you can say for most posters.
 

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Originally posted by <b>DJRaz</b>!
bird? lebron is way more athletic. passing/court vision should be about equal. bird had much more consistent jumper. not more range, but a better shot. bird came to a good team and contributed at PF immediately. had a good college basketball education.

raz .::.

Bird came to one of the worst teams in the NBA...great franchise but terrible team.

During his rookie season he accounted for the biggest win differential ever. That record stood until David Robinson came out of the Navy and posted the biggest win difference in his rookie year.

The Cavs sucked last year. A good measuring stick for LeBron's impact will be how many more wins the Cavs get this year than last.
 

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Originally posted by <b>DJRaz</b>!
i've seen magic play plenty. i grew up watching magic, bird, and jordan play. i've seen all three of them play in person. don't worry about my credibility, it's there if you need to hear about it. lebron is already a better 'scorer' than magic. not a better percentage shooter because he isn't as smart a player as magic. yeah he takes some stupid shots. but he takes, and nails, some damn good shots with good defense on him. defenders are already afraid of him. i hate the airballs too but 40% aint too bad for now considering everything he's being asked to do.
Better scorer than Magic and shooting 40%??? Go figure.
I guess Carmelo is a better shooter than Bird, too... :no:


he has games where he shoots over 50% and he has the scoring swagger that jordan had. do you really think lebron would have that much trouble dropping 60+ if he set out to? if that's what it takes to beat someone like the celts in a playoff series he could and would.
Maybe LBJ´s game should be compared to Wilt´s, then!!!! :no:

maybe you should spend some more time watching espn classic and non-national cavs games because if you think those guys were actually "miles" ahead of lebron in every other department you have a warped sense of the past. we all know there's no better car than your first 1988 cavalier or whatever it was. jordan couldn't pass like lebron his rookie year (if ever). magic couldn't go to the rack through 3 defenders like lebron, ever. and bird couldn't go coast to coast and finish like lebron, ever. so in certain categories he's already better, or at least showing great potential. i'm being patient and having fun playing 'what if'. you are just a hater.
Follow your own advice and study up, kid.
For example, a nice review of the 80's Celtics-LA Finals should show you you´re dead wrong on those absurd comments...

i ain't saying he's better, calm down. i'm saying he's worthy of comparison. nevus and futurevixsten and other rational people here seem to agree. he's got a long way to go and a lot to learn and it should be awesome to watch.
That´s plain stupid.
Saying he´s (already) worth of comparison and then defending that "he´s got a long way to go" is stating LBJ will be better than Magic, Bird and Jordan (and Wilt, and West, and Oscar, and Russell, etc.).

That will never happen.
BUT i may be wrong.
On the either hand, LBJ hasn´t showed me much to make that kind of projection...
 

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it appears that not everyone is seeing the same games on this board. their isn't gonna be any agreement here cuz some people have seen 20 minutes of lebron play and determined him a bust.... or even worse they are just mad at the media for the hype even though they know the kid is good, so the hate is some kind of way to will him to fail. who knows. i don't really hate any of the players in the league. maybe i'm a hippy.

anyway, my posts came across like lebron is as good or better than those classic players. no way. each has way too many rings. but if you rewind them to 18 years old there's no chance. if you rewind them to their rookie years there's a decent comparison, and the reason for this thread.

even if you think he's useless and it's all a big media conspiracy he's dropping bird & magic-like numbers. not francis or mcgrady like numbers.... legendary numbers. but i for one think the numbers are secondary in his game. i think he's gonna be the heart and soul of a winning team for whoever can figure out how to build one around him.
 

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Originally posted by <b>DJRaz</b>!
it appears that not everyone is seeing the same games on this board. their isn't gonna be any agreement here cuz some people have seen 20 minutes of lebron play and determined him a bust.... or even worse they are just mad at the media for the hype even though they know the kid is good, so the hate is some kind of way to will him to fail. who knows. i don't really hate any of the players in the league. maybe i'm a hippy.
Nope. not a hippy.
LBJ is good. Very good.
But just don´t start over-hyping the guy, for i am old enough to remeber Magic, Larry, Lareem, Dr. J, Charles and Nique.

anyway, my posts came across like lebron is as good or better than those classic players. no way. each has way too many rings. but if you rewind them to 18 years old there's no chance. if you rewind them to their rookie years there's a decent comparison, and the reason for this thread.
You can compare LBJ´s rookie season to Michael´s and Larry´s all you want, but NEVER Magic´s. NEVER!
Magic (a 20 year old rookie) shined in a team with Kareem, Wilkes and Norm Nixon (17,6ppg and 7,8apg .
Not quite the comparison with this year´s Cavs, is it?

even if you think he's useless and it's all a big media conspiracy he's dropping bird & magic-like numbers. not francis or mcgrady like numbers.... legendary numbers. but i for one think the numbers are secondary in his game. i think he's gonna be the heart and soul of a winning team for whoever can figure out how to build one around him.
I don´t think he is useless.
I don´t think he will be one of the greatest ever, either.
Just a darn good player carrying a lot of baggage (hype)

Maybe he will become another Oscar or Jordan.
Maybe he will become the next Nique Wilkins.
But there will never be another Magic or Bird.
 

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But just don´t start over-hyping the guy, for i am old enough to remeber Magic, Larry, Lareem, Dr. J, Charles and Nique.
Yes, the great Lareem!

Sorry, I just thought that sounded really funny. :)

Don't you think LeBron would have a much easier time and "shine" more than he is now on a team with Kareem, Wilkes, and Norm Nixon?
 

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Originally posted by <b>DJRaz</b>!
bird? lebron is way more athletic. passing/court vision should be about equal. bird had much more consistent jumper. not more range, but a better shot. <b>bird came to a good team and contributed at PF immediately.</b> had a good college basketball education.

magic? lebron is way more athletic. lebron's shot is already better. court vision has to go to magic, but probably just barely within a few years. magic's game sense and ability to run the point is way more advanced than lebrons right now. had a good college basketball education. contributed immediately in a big way to a good team.

jordan? jordan and lebron's athleticism as compared to other players of their time is probably equal. both are inconsistent and stupid at times as rookies but both can just posterize you on any given play. jordan's shot might have been a touch better, and his general game intensity was a little higher. lebrons' passing is way ahead of young jordans. jordan scored a lot of points on a bad team but they didn't win anything of consequence for several years.

it's pretty obvious that james does not match up properly for comparison to any of these players. none of them play the same style nor have his strengths and weaknesses.

he does however have elements of all 3 of them in his game, and that's why people are excited. he has bird's ability to come down and extract points from the offense by either scoring or dishing. he has jordan's ability to posterize you and demoralize you with his physical gifts. and he has magic's ability to do a beautiful full-court bounce pass to a streaking player who hasn't even arrived there yet.

throw some game management skills in there, some defense, and another scorer or two and you have a formidable presence, and not just in the east.

i think he's the prototype for a future nba superstar. if i made a little boy right now i'd start him on the lebron diet and the lebron training program!

raz .::.

<font color=green>You must be kidding or your memory is failing you??? A good team that had 29 wins the season before</font> and Bird played sf because Cornbread was PF from what I remember.
 

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Re: Re: lebron verse the greats

Originally posted by <b>TheRifleman</b>!



<font color=green>You must be kidding or your memory is failing you??? A good team that had 29 wins the season before</font> and Bird played sf because Cornbread was PF from what I remember.
but the situation is more jordan like than bird like. bird had guys who knew how to win, they were just stuck and missing something. they did have cowens, tiny, maxwell (who really played more 3 than bird), rick robey, even half a season from pistol. they had a team of professionals. bird just had a tremendous impact on them as a team. an amazing turnaround.
 

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Re: Re: Re: lebron verse the greats

Originally posted by <b>kflo</b>!


but the situation is more jordan like than bird like. <b>bird had guys who knew how to win, </b>hey were just stuck and missing something. they did have cowens, tiny, maxwell (who really played more 3 than bird), rick robey, even half a season from pistol. they had a team of professionals. bird just had a tremendous impact on them as a team. an amazing turnaround.
I believe Bird had one player on his team that knew how to win, Old Cowens, as the others hadn't won jackcrap in their careers.

Rick was a great "practice" player, but hardly a household name by any stretch of the imagination - unless we think Mark madsen is a household name, as Rick's game was similar. :D

Old Pistol retired after that season and looked as if he needed to, as his body looked all shot to heck.

Going from <b><font color=green> 29 wins to 61 wins -</b></font> with Bird being the one and only change does speak volumes about his game, I agree with you there.
 

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What's interesting about Lebron is his size and versatility. I think his physique and game compares best with Magic's at this point, from the too little I've seem of him. And Magic did enter the league at 20, not 18.

But make no mistake, and I'm gonna get a little hypothetical here, if Lebron and Magic enterd the league in the same year, and played together on the same team, Magic would play the point. Lebron would play the two guard or SF.

If the same scenario occurred with Jordan, Lebron would play the point or SF, Jordan wouldn't leave the two spot.

With Bird, Lebron could play the point or two position.

The point is, only Magic could better Lebron's positional versatility. Magic could play any position, but his floor stewardship was so superb you'd always want him at the point running the offense.

Bird was perfect at the SF. With his outside range he'd never have played PF in his day (now we have 7 footers playing SF - it's a new world order) unless the roster was very unbalanced. And he'd get scorched defensively if he tried to play the two guard.

Jordan was the prototypical two guard. Later in his career he could pass pretty damn good to find an open man, but mostly because 3 guys would collapse on him, leaving teammates wide open. But his handle was just average for a superstar guard, and SFs would just back him down on D.

So as others have said, Lebron doesn't really excell at any one particular thing yet, to the same extent some of the legends have, but he still has a couple of years ahead of him before he can be fairly compared to these guys. But what amazes me most is how court smart he is considering all he's had is HIGHSCHOOL COACHING!!! Think about it, how good are most highschool coaches compared to the amazing institutions that Jordan, Bird, and Magic rose from?

It's his amazing progress from such humble beginings that is so stunning about Lebron. It feels rediculous to compare him to three of the best who've ever played, but seriously, who knows where this kid will be by the time he's 22, or 26, just from being in a better league than highschool, let alone the NBA.
 

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There are no 7 footers playing small forward position. There are quite likely no 7 foot power forwards either. Knowing that Shaq is 6' 11" ( he admitted it himself ), name one small forward or even power forward taller than Shaq. I'm sure Bird would do even better today

Look at Peja today and add more points, assists and boards. That is what Bird would be today. You'd be looking at close to 30 points per game on 50% shooting, 12 boards and close to 10 assists. That is a guy who could average a triple double for the season today ( considering what the east looks like today, I could almost guarantee you that Larry in his prime would average 30 / 12 / 10 today. )

Bird averaged 25 ppg , 10 boards and 6 assists for his entire career, and those numbers are lowered because of those seasons he played with a bad back.

Other points about Lebron. T-Mac, Pierce, Kobe and Penny before injuries are all guys of Lebron's size and they can play any position Lebron can play, and they can do it a lot better. I don't think Lebron brigs us anything we haven't already seen from any of those guys. No need to drag the greats into this. Lets first see if Lebron can even compete with these semi-greats ( I'm giving them a little more credit than they deserve, I feel ).
People forget that Penny was a 22 ppg on 52% shooting, 7 assists, 5 boards and 2 steals per game guy, didn't turn the ball over as much either. Same size as Lebron, but could shoot, could play more positions than Lebron ever will be able to.

Lebron actually can't really play a shooting guard since he can't shoot. Silas is questioning his point guard abilities too. So I'm not so sure about his versatility.

Other important points. Lebron may have entered NBA a year younger than Magic, but there are a lot more young inexperienced players playing against him. Everybody is coming into the league early these days. He definitely has it easier. He is physically more mature ( Magic was skinny and bulked up later ) which leads me to believe he won't improve much more physically or otherwise. Some players mature earlier and Lebron is one of them ( everybody agrees on that point, the question is , what exactly does it mean? It could mean he's already near his peak ).
 
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