Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Celtics-Lakers

I've said a lot of controversial things on this blog, but none more so than this -- and yet for me it's a no-brainer:

Magic Johnson is the best basketball player in history. Michael Jordan is not.

And I say this as a longstanding fan of whatever team happens to be playing against the Lakers. Michael Jordan was a superb, at times perfect, two-guard. But he never did anything like this, as recounted in Magic's wikipedia entry:

The Lakers compiled a 60–22 record in the regular season and reached the 1980 NBA Finals, where they faced the Philadelphia 76ers, who were led by future Hall of Fame forward Julius Erving. The Lakers took a 3–2 lead, but Abdul-Jabbar, who averaged 33 points a game in the series, sprained his ankle in Game 5, and was unable to play in the remainder of the series. Paul Westhead ... decided to put Johnson at center. In Game 6, Johnson recorded 42 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists and three steals, played guard, forward and center at different points in the game, and lifted the Lakers to a 123–107 win. Johnson became the first and only rookie to win the NBA Finals MVP award, and his clutch performance is still regarded as one of the finest ever in the NBA.
Every. position. on. the. floor. in. the. finals. 42 points, 15 rebounds, 7 assists. As a rookie. without. Kareem Adbul-Jabbar.

Sorry, Jordan fans. I know he sells a lot of underwear, but Michael Jordan never did anything to touch that. I would also rank Larry Bird above Jordan, as Bird had a more complete game throughout his career. I can't speak to the many great players who came before my time, but of the players I've followed more or less closely, Jordan places third.

For those of you living in internet-connected caves or possessed of enough good sense not to follow professional sports, the Celtics and Lakers are back in the NBA finals, albeit without Bird or Magic.

Go Celtics!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

total BS!