“I still ain’t putting him above Jordan”- Stephen A. Smith opens up LeBron James’ GOAT debate

The debate as to whether Michael Jordan or LeBron James is the greatest basketball player in NBA history is one that has continued to rage on.

2022 NBA All-Star Game

2022 NBA All-Star Game

On one hand, many feel that Jordan’s run of six championships and his dominant two-way play makes him the greatest of all time. On the other hand, many feel as though James’ longevity and the fact that he’s been able to win with multiple teams makes him the greatest.

With LeBron James and the LA Lakers currently in the middle of an impressive playoff run that currently sees them up 3-1 in the second round, Stephen A. Smith shared his views on the GOAT debate.

If LeBron James were to capture a fifth championship then he would have no choice but to hear arguments from those who put him ahead of MJ on the NBA Mt. Rushmore. During Tuesday morning’s installment of First Take, Smith weighed in on the situation, saying:

“I have found it insulting for anybody to think that he belongs above Michael Jordan, if he were to win a fifth title this year. I would no longer feel insulted by that discussion. I would have to concede that yeah, I still ain’t putting him above Jordan. But I understand others who might think otherwise.

“The fact of the matter is LeBron is the leader of the pack, and for him to turn around in his 20th season and play the way that he’s played, and to capture a fifth NBA championship in his career this particular season at this stage in his career it would warrant a discussion.”

Celebrities Attend The 68th NBA All-Star Game - Inside

Celebrities Attend The 68th NBA All-Star Game – Inside

Looking at LeBron James’ chances of winning another NBA title

Of course, the debate Stephen A. Smith was weighing in on hinges on LeBron James winning another ring this season. Early in the year James’ odds of winning another title seemed to be rather slim. With a dismal 0-5 record to start the season the team went 2-8 in their first ten.

Since the trade deadline, however, the team seems to be in a position to make a big postseason run. With one of the best records in all of the NBA following the trade deadline, the Lakers now find themselves as one of the favorites to win a championship.

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers - Game Four

Golden State Warriors v Los Angeles Lakers – Game Four

As GM Rob Pelinka explained back in February, when something isn’t working, it’s a manager’s job to fix it. He was quoted by SportsNet, saying:

“When something’s not working as a general manager, it’s your job to fix it.

“No one has a perfect track record. But when you feel like a team isn’t performing the way it’s supposed to you gotta rearrange the parts. And that was sort of what we did at the trade deadline.”

The moves have certainly paid dividends for the team, as they find themselves up 3-1 over the defending champions heading into a potential closeout Game 5. Whether or not LeBron James is able to help lead the team past the Conference Finals and to another NBA Championship, only time will tell.

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