Skip to main content

In 2013, Phil Jackson Said Michael Jordan Was Better Than LeBron James Only Because Of Championships

In 2013, Phil Jackson Said Michael Jordan Was Better Than LeBron James Only Because Of Championships

The GOAT debate has long been a matter of controversy.

Recently, LeBron James has made a pretty strong case that he belongs at the top, if not for his illustrious resume then for his amazing longevity, which has him as one of the league's best players after 18 years. His all-around talent alone is enough for countless fans and former players to peg him as no. 1.

But for many, Michael Jeffrey Jordan still wears the crown. Throughout the 90s, Jordan wasn't just dominating on the court -- he was the face of the entire game.

It can be hard to pick one player over the other in terms of the GOAT debate, but one major factor that separated the two for a long time was Championships.

Back in May of 2013, when James only had a single title to his name, basketball coaching legend Phil Jackson said a lack of Championships was, in fact, the only reason he couldn't out LeBron above Jordan in the all-time standings.

“I think a lot of people think he’s right there,” Jackson said. “I think better is only about championships. That’s the only measurement that’s left for LeBron that will say that he’s a better ballplayer than Michael or that people can argue it. It’s the number of championships that you win, and that’s proof in the pudding right there.

His game is incredible. I think it’s incredible that he can play without fouling a lot of the time. He can play defense on almost everybody that is on the floor. He’s an unselfish ballplayer. He doesn’t lust to score as Kobe or Michael did, but when the need is there he definitely finds a way to score. His game has continued to improve the last four or five years, and we don’t see what the limitations are going to be.”

The mark of any true superstar is winning. No matter the era or circumstance, the best of the best seem to always find ways to beat out the competition.

Michael Jordan not only took home six, but he did so with a perfect record in the Finals, never even allowing a series to extend past six games.

Nowadays, LeBron is a 4x Champion, having captured a Ring with three different teams. Entering year 19, he's got everything going for him: the stats, his play, the Rings... and while people still deny his claim to the throne, it seems he still has time to do some convincing.