As one of the greatest scorers in NBA history, there aren’t many others on the planet more qualified to talk ball than Allen Iverson. A 4x scoring champ, 11x All-Star, and first-ballot Hall-of-Famer, A.I. was a prominent athlete in the early 2000s and by the time he retired in 2011, he had earned the respect of nearly everyone in the basketball community.
Complex recently got the chance to sit down with Iverson to discuss a number of topics, including James Harden, Kobe Bryant, and the NBA bubble.
One of the most interesting segments, though, came after a question was asked about NBA All-Time rankings. After some words about Kobe and Mike, Iverson spared some words for LeBron…
I love some goddamn LeBron James to death. I got a different type of love for LeBron, because I know him in person. He’s a better person than he is a basketball player. I know him, his family, his homeboys, all great dudes.
For those that have followed James at all, it shouldn’t be a particularly surprising statement. Bron has always prided himself on doing the right thing, fighting for the right causes, and staying away from the dramatics that usually comes with being a world-famous athlete.
Instead of going out and starting beef with players, he’s out befriending them.
Of course, this doesn’t do much to add to his claim as the GOAT. In fact, during the same interview, Iverson noted that, no matter how much he loved LeBron and Kobe, it is Michael Jordan who is the greatest.
Like, I ain’t never seen nothing, besides Black Jesus [Michael Jordan], amen, I ain’t never seen nothing like it. When people talk about how he basically copied Mike, I mean, why would you copy anybody else? If I was 6’6…I tried to copy Mike, but I’m just six feet. I tried the best that I could to emulate that guy, man, because that was the greatest that I’ve ever seen in my life. That’s why I love The Last Dance. I get to brag. While everybody was watching The Last Dance, I was able to say, “See, I told y’all.” I even saw stuff that I didn’t know, obviously. But it was a great moment for me after it was all over, and I was able to say, “See, I told you that he’s the best ever.” As great as Kobe is, great as LeBron is, [Jordan is] Black Jesus, man.
So there you have it. LeBron might win the “nicest guy” award, but Iverson (and many others who share his opinion), aren’t giving him the crown as basketball All-Time greatest player.