Test for the Best

Noah Sacco, Sports Editor

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As we settle into the warm, inviting climate of spring, the NBA playoffs are in full bloom. From the middle of April to the end of May, the postseason in the NBA is a turbulent and nerve-wracking period of time for fans, coaches and players everywhere. Along with the chaos that accompanies the playoffs, many debates are surfaced. Several arguments involve how teams will perform and what players will step up to the challenge and stand out. One of the most prevalent questions being asked during this year’s NBA playoffs is this: Does LeBron James have the ability to surpass Michael Jordan as the greatest player in NBA history?
To resolve this dispute, many people look towards statistics when comparing the two freakish athletes. However, both men are equivalent in many of the fields and each has an advantage over the other in certain categories. Regardless, Michael Jordan surpasses Lebron James through his legendary style, pure playing ability and the impact he has made for the NBA and the game of basketball.
One of the defining aspects of Michael Jordan’s career was his grace on the court and how he seemed to float in the air. Additionally, Jordan’s playing style was one of total body awareness. His incorporation of each muscle to the best of their ability was poetic, yet boldly stated. As for LeBron, his rough movements are successful for only a limited amount of time.
The playing ability of Michael Jordan was awe-inspiring, almost mythical. He was always the aggressor and never backed down from a challenge. Not to mention he also gained a reputation for being one of the best defensive players in NBA history. LeBron has yet to receive such recognition. In fact, many experts claim that in a one-on-one matchup between both athletes in the prime of their athletic careers, LeBron would only win three times out of ten.
On the same note, the rigor of today’s competition seems to have faded. Nowadays, it appears that the Cavaliers, Warriors, Spurs and a few other teams are the only true threats in the league. During the 1990’s, each NBA team had competitive edge that ensured no game was a walk in the park.This heightened Jordan’s drive for greatness and it developed him into a more well-rounded player.
Besides his finesse and athleticism, Michael Jordan personified what it truly meant to compete. Countless times Jordan was deterred by injuries and fatigue in his career. One instance involved him having a 102-degree flu during Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals. When many athletes would have declared themselves unable to play, Michael Jordan rose to the occasion and achieved above and beyond people’s expectations of an player who could barely keep from falling down. To this day, his 38 point performance is considered one of the greatest competitiveness displayments in sports history.
It’s almost disrespectful to have a figure as enshrined as MJ (Michael Jordan) be compared to someone else on the basketball court. Though LeBron James may be immensely talented and a highly influential, the greatness of “Air Jordan” will remain a spectacle in basketball and in the sporting world for years to come.

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Test for the Best