In the week leading up to the big Christmas Day game between the Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers all the talk was about who is the better player today, LeBron James or Kobe Bryant. Now that the game has just ended, with the Cavs winning 102 -87 in dominating fashion, I think I need to put all the confusion to rest and settle this debate once and for all, well at least until they square off again.
Now, to clarify, I am not going to make a case for which one I would choose if I was starting a franchise, because that honor would easily go to LeBron. When deciding which player to start a franchise with one must consider numerous different factors that don’t contribute at all to the product on the floor todaysuch as, age, potential, and even marketability. King James wins all three of these categories in landslides, he’s seven years younger, has room to grow because of his youth, and is a star in every corner of the globe.
On the other hand, when deciding on the better player as of right now a number of different aspects come into play. You have to look at the major skills it takes to be a great player in the NBA today, which include scoring, passing/playmaking, rebounding, defense, and the very important yet greatly under appreciated intangibles. When it comes to comparing LeBron and Kobe it is basically the equivalent of comparing The Hangover to Step Brothers, each will go down in history as a classic but depending on who you ask one is has is slightly better than the other. To me it’s pretty clear that Kobe Bryant is The Hangover in this situation, and as a result is the better NBA player.
First, both King James and Kobe are prolific scorers, and fill it up each and every night. So, I call the scoring category a push. Second, comes the playmaking category where I give a slight edge to Kobe Bryant. It may be just because he has better players around him, but Kobe makes his teammates a lot better and right now I just can’t say that LeBron.In terms of rebounding its pretty evident that LeBron has the edge, he is and can jump out of the gym.In terms of defense I give the nod to Kobe once again. He always finds a way to step up on defense in the clutch, and unlike LeBron doesn’t take any plays off on the less exciting side of the ball. When I take a look at the intangibles side of things, I see four rings on the side of Kobe while zero with LeBron. That’s enough right there for me to give Kobe the advantage, and then you top it off with the fact that he is the most clutch player since Michael Jordon and Kobe breezes to an easy win in the intangibles category.
So, there you go, now you can rest easy, there’s no more need to argue with family, friends, or co-workers over who is the best player in the NBA. I’ve settled it for you, Kobe Bryant has the illustrious honor of being the best basketball player in the world today. Well for now that is, as I am sure we will revisit this topic sooner rather than later, and by that time I may have a total different outlook on this discussion.
;;-Garrett Hill Please feel free to respond to this article in either a comment or a forum post. Tell me if you agree or totally disagree, just voice your opinion.