Michael Jordan is the greatest player to ever live and it’s not even close. Sometimes, it feels like young players just don’t acknowledge how incredibly dominant he was from the start until the very second of his last retirement, and yes, we mean his stint with the Washington Wizards.
A 40-year-old Michael Jordan averaged 20.0 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 1.5 steals per game on 37.0 minutes with 45% shooting, 6.2 Win Shares and a PER of 19.3
To put this in context, Jayson Tatum had averages of 23.4 points, 7.0 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 1.4 steals, 34.3 minutes, 45% shooting, 6.9 Win Shares, and a PER of 20.4. Pascal Siakam averaged 22.9 points, 7.3 boards, 3.5 dimes, 1.0 steals on 35.2 minutes while shooting 45% from the floor with 5.4 Win Shares, and a PER of 17.9.
Donovan Mitchell, on the other hand, averaged 24.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, 4.3 assists, 1.0 steals on 34.3 minutes per game and 45% shooting with 5.4 Win Shares, and a PER of 18.8.
That means Jordan averaged more minutes than players who are 24, 26, and 22, respectively. He also had more win shares and a higher PER than two All-Stars leading their teams to the playoffs, and even got more steals per game than them while shooting exactly the same from the floor.
The Washington Wizards were far from a contending team during Jordan’s tenure at the nation’s capital. But even at 40 years old the guy could still make an impact on both ends of the floor and dominate. The game was played at a slower pace so perhaps those numbers would have been even better than what those young stars posted throughout the season. That’s why he’s the GOAT.