Michael Jordan vs LeBron James: What Does Being The GOAT Mean?


Photo Credit: si.com

 Ever since LeBron James was just a kid in high school, he has been compared to Michael Jordan. These comparisons have led to one of the biggest debated and controversial questions in all of sports: Who is the greatest of all time, LeBron James or Michael Jordan?

To find who the greatest basketball player is, we must define what being the greatest is. While everyone may have their little differences in what being the greatest really is, I believe that being the greatest means winning and accomplishing the most. Many people mix up being the best and being the greatest. Being the best is about your pure skill and talent of the game, but being the greatest is about winning, and accomplishing the most—the whole objective of the game. To find out who did the most in their career, we must take a look at some career statistics.

Who Won More?

Out of the 1,371 regular season games that LeBron James has played he won 65.4 percent of them. He has a career record of 899-472. Meanwhile Michael Jordan has won 65.9 percent of his games. He has played 1,072 games and has a career record of 706-366. Michael Jordan has a better win percentage, however LeBron James has won more games.

What Does Allderdice Think?

I interviewed 36 people at Taylor Allderdice (including both staff and students) asking who is the greater player. 61 percent of people claimed that Michael Jordan was the G.O.A.T (greatest of all time) while 39 percent claimed LeBron was the G.O.A.T. 

An interesting occurrence about the replies was that the teachers who got to witness both LeBron James and Michael Jordan play, typically replied that M.J was the greater player. Meanwhile students who only got to watch LeBron play more commonly answered LeBron James. This is most likely due to something called “recency bias,” since the younger generation is more familiar with LeBron James, they tend to favor him more.

Career Accolades 

Possibly, the best way to compare these two careers is to take a look at their accolades and accomplishments and to compare them. Michael Jordan has 6 championships as opposed to Lebron James’ 4 championships. Jordan has 6 final MVPs while LeBron has 4. MJ has 10 scoring titles to Lebron’s 1 scoring title. Michael Jordan has 5 MVPs, while LeBron has 4. Michael Jordan is also the only one of the two to win Defensive Player of the Year (winning it in 1988).

You could make the argument that LeBron James beats Michael Jordan in most statistical categories, but Lebron James holds the advantage of playing four more seasons in the NBA. If you compare their career averages, Michael Jordan has 3 more points per game and 1 more steal per game, but 1 less assist per game and 2 less rebounds per game, and both have the same amount of blocks per game. They have almost identical career averages, but LeBron James played 4 more seasons under his belt. Even with that, Michael Jordan holds his own and still bests James in some categories.


Overall, the question will forever be of much debate, but students at Allderdice tend to believe that Michael Jordan has accomplished more, and is the better of the two.