Ok so this is just stupid. Maybe you’ve seen this poll floating around over the past couple of days from ESPN. Apparently, 34 percent of the 1,471 people that were polled answered that Michael Jordan (at 52 years old) would beat LeBron James (30 years old/dominating the NBA) in a game of 1-on-1 right now.
I don’t need to waste time on this like other people are because it’s idiotic. Either this poll was taken in Chicago (still a stretch), or people just misread the question (this has to be what happened).
If it was an all-time question, and you get to pick each player in their prime, I would take MJ everyday of the week, and that’s probably what people did here.
As much as we’d love to see that matchup, I’m a realist. Which raises the question, when would have been the best time for LeBron and MJ to play 1-on-1 in real life? Obviously, Jordan is 22-years older than LBJ, so it’s a tough question.
I think the best answer is the summer of 2003. MJ would be 40-years old and just retired from his two-season stint with the Wizards (where he still put up very good numbers and had some 50-point games).
LeBron was a fresh faced 18-year old and had just been taken by the Cavs with the No. 1 overall pick in the 2003 draft. He played Summer League at UMASS Boston that summer and got a little taste of NBA talent for the first time after coming out of high school.
It wouldn’t be the freakish athletic battle that everyone dreams of when they think LeBron vs. MJ … but it has the advantage of being a real matchup. Why couldn’t we have made this happen??
I remember going to see Jordan play against the Celtics in Boston during his final season with the Wizards and thinking, “man, it would be cool if he plays one more year so we can see him play against LeBron.” A few months later, I remember being being in the gym in South Boston watching LeBron play in that summer league … thinking, “why did Michael retire?”
Look I get why everyone wants to talk about this matchup, but it’s physically impossible for the two players to actually compete in there prime (and playing 1-on-1 today is just stupid). It reminds me of Charles Barkley playing 1-on-1 with D-Wade a few years back when they were doing commercials together and how ugly that was.
Nice try Chuck.
But if you’re as big of a basketball freak as I am, it pains you that there was an actual time that we could have witnessed this matchup … and it actually would have been close. Raw athleticism vs. old man game — and not Barkley’s old, old, fat man game.
If anything let’s debate who is greater all-time. And the answer is still Jordan. But at least that’s something to talk about. Talking about who would win a game of 1-on-1 only makes me think about how we actually had a SLIM window to make it happen for real.
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