Scottie Pippen shocked the basketball world when he claimed that LeBron James was “probably ahead of (Michael) Jordan” during an appearance on ESPN’s First Take on Thursday morning.
Pipped couched his comments with loads of semantics, wording his praise of LeBron James in a way that might suggest he was only talking about statistics, and not where each player ranked in NBA history. Regardless of Pippen’s intent, though, having someone who played with Jordan declare that James is ahead of him by any metric is going to create some buzz, and that’s exactly what happened.
The James vs. Jordan debate is interesting in that it’ll likely come down to what you value most as a basketball watcher. James’ statistics will probably trump Jordan’s when his career is over, and you can attribute that to a number of things. On the flip side, if you value accolades like MVP awards and championships, James is going to have a difficult time passing Jordan at this point in his career. It’s possible, sure, but it would be difficult.