Isaiah. He has been buried because of the feuds with Jordan and Magic. But Isaiah is remarkably under rated. He beat Bird, Magic and Jordan and didn't go around recruiting stars to do it. Also Isaiah was the man on his teams unlike Wade who's been demoted to sidekick.
He's a horrible person by all accounts of the media. But as a player and a competitor Isaiah is one of the finest the NBA has seen.
2. I'm not trying to completely ignore his 12 straight All-Stars, that is impressive. I'm just saying Wade has 8 in a row right now, and that will probably get very close to 12 himself.
3. Comparing a PG to a SG in terms of passing is hard. Wade is a tremendous passer for his position. He's currently 12th among active players in assists, and every single person above him is a PG besides LeBron. "Twice the passer", assuming you're just basing it on APG, is a bit of a stretch. Zeke is a top 5 passer of all time, but Wade is pretty elite compared to his position as well (maybe only LeBron, Bird and Theus are better passing non-PGs in the history of the game).
The defense of Zeke over Wade I think ultimately comes down to assists, and once you realize how great Wade actually is of a passer considering the position he plays, I think the arguments start to run out. I'll even call defense a wash. Wade's efficiency is just astronomically higher than Zeke's. We're talking a 56.5% TS% compared to 51.6%. We're talking a 25.7 PER compared to an 18.1 PER. We're talking a .195 WS/48 compared to a .109. We're talking higher OWS and DWS. Literally, every basic advanced metric that you can find on b-r.com favors Wade. Literally evey single one of them (BLK%, TRB%, TOV%, eFG% etc.).
I do sometimes hate using stats, but there is such a glaring difference here. Wade also, in my opinion, has been the far superior playoff performer too. Zeke had some incredibly memorable runs there, but it's nothing that Wade can't top.
I think we're letting team success carry us away here with Zeke. He was a tremendous individual player and a great leader and PG, but I'm seeing too much "HE beat Magic, Jordan and Bird" and "HE was the leader of the defense". He might have been the emotional leader of those teams, but there were a lot of equally important pieces.
We'll agree to disagree! I'm sure the reality is neither of us are as right as we think we are.
I didn't expect Isiah to be beating out Wade here.
I think people just like to underrate Wade all the time as if he is some second tier star. The guy has been top 3 at least 5-6 years in the league. He was the best player 1 year and 2nd best a few years.
I find it hard to compare these 2 players so I will not vote. With that said if Isiah was 4th in any team statistic then I question the relevance of that stat in that context because Isiah was far and away the best/most important player on those teams. I remember how awful Detroit was before Isiah. Isiah scored 16 points in like 90 seconds to take Bernard and the Knicks in to playoff overtime one year. That was insane. Many Knicks fans hated Isiah. Many Bulls fans hated Isiah. Many Celtics fans hated Isiah but most also knew how great a player he was at that time.
all of those players are stars.
it's pretty close, almost a tie, but i gotta give the slightest edge to Isiah Thomas, mainly because i feel him taking his team to 3 finals as the best player on the team & winning 2 is the tie breaker. plus like a few people mentioned, the bad boys beat much tougher teams to get there (Bird's Celtics, Magic's Lakers, Jordan's Bulls). i do think the Bulls guys like Grant & Pippen hadn't developed yet, & had the Pistons played the Bulls from 1991 on they'd have lost. and i think if Pippen didn't have the migrane that made him beyond worthless in game 7 of the 1990 ECF the Bulls would have won 4 straight titles. but still gotta give Isiah & the Pistons credit for what happened & who they beat. the Bulls payed them back soon enough. classic rivalry