The most talented and skilled players of all time in the minds of fans, young and old, are Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, and LeBron James. While disregarding bigs for a minute, it is clear these players brought the most special moments to the NBA hardwood. The way they dominated the game with style, grace, and uniqueness is the reason they captured the hearts of fans all over the world. Of course, LeBron James is still doing it at 37 years of age.
But each player dominated the game in their own way. While Jordan and Bryant were basically the same players, they can be divided into different categories along with LeBron James. For the wide majority of fans, Jordan was the greatest winner, Kobe Bryant was the hardest worker, and LeBron James has the most complete game of all time.
Michael Jordan Is The Greatest Winner Ever
It is hard to argue that Michael Jordan is the greatest winner of all time. He is the only player in NBA history with 2 3-peats and 3 Finals MVPs in a row, and the man who basically became the face of the league for eternity. Jordan is the most obsessed winner in sports history and is the biggest superstar in any team sport. MJ was near-perfection in his play because of his dedication to his craft. But Jordan was also a gifted talent who was arguably the most athletic shooting guard ever with unique hops and gigantic hands. His hands especially helped him dominate on both ends of the floor.
There were some special players throughout NBA history, but no one wanted to win as badly as Michael Jordan. Jordan took things personally whenever he was compared to any other player and dominated all matchups including the likes of Clyde Drexler, Charles Barkley, Patrick Ewing, and Karl Malone. That is why in 6 Finals appearances, Jordan won 6 Finals MVPs without ever playing in a Game 7. Add in 10 scoring titles and 5 MVP awards and you get the most obsessed winner in sports history.
Kobe Bryant Worked Harder Than Anyone Else
Kobe Bryant was awfully close to Michael Jordan in terms of style of play, the hunger of the game, and the desire to win. But Bryant had a characteristic that cannot be shared by anyone else: he worked extremely hard. Despite growing up in Italy, Bryant fell in love with the game of basketball. He then became a force as a young player in the United States and overcame obstacles including lack of playing time in his rookie season (15.5 MPG) playing behind defensive stalwart Eddie Jones.
Unlike Jordan, Bryant had small hands. He could not palm the basketball like Jordan could, and was not quite as athletic. But he refined his game to near-perfection, to the point where he could dominate the game as he aged. As a young player, Bryant used his athleticism and aggression to score at the rim and later developed arguably the best post-game in NBA history for a guard. Kobe was a professional scorer and behind Michael Jordan could be the best offensive player of all time. Bryant came close to Michael Jordan as a player, but he worked harder than anyone else to become one of the best players to have ever lived.
LeBron James Is The Most Complete Player Ever
LeBron James is the most dominant superstar of his generation. The King is a consistent 27-7-7 player ever since his rookie season and is still going strong at 36 years of age. He is also arguably the best regular-season performer in NBA history, as he can carry any team to the best record in his conference. LeBron also won 4 MVPs to go along with 17 All-NBA Teams, 17 All-Star Teams, and a scoring title in 2008.
The reason LeBron was able to make every one of his teams a title contender is because The King has the most complete game in NBA history. James has the athleticism and physicality to affect the game with his size, but also the greatest basketball mind. Outside of Magic Johnson, no player makes others better as LeBron can. He is a pass-first superstar, despite his career 27.0 PPG average. James reads the floor better than anyone in his era, and his raw athleticism makes him the most complete all-around player in NBA history.
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