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JasonJohnHorn
06-18-2013, 10:06 AM
I've noticed a lot of people knocking LBJ for shrinking on the big stage, and I don't think this is a fair assessment. I would agree that he is not playing at the level he played in the regular season, but there are a number of reasons for that. I think the biggest issue here though is how people compare LBJ to Jordan and Kobe, rather than to a player like Magic, whom LBJ more closely resembles.


In his first finals, Magic Johnson failed to break 20 points in 4 of six games. In his second finals it was much of the same, 4 or 6 games saw him score less than 20 points and two of those games saw him record only 10. In his third finals appearance, Magic only broke the 20 point mark once in four games. His forth finals saw him score less than twenty 4 out of 7 games. His fifth finals appearance? Again Magic scored less than twenty points in 4 out of 6 games. In 1989 Magic failed to break the 20 point mark at all, though his missed almost two entire games due to injury. In his last finals appearance, Magic only scored more than 20 points in regulation once.

I realize LBJ is more of a scorer than was Magic, but at the same time, LBJ is more of a play maker and rebounder than Kobe or Jordan. Against Dallas LBJ recorded a triple-double with only 17 points in a game that saw the Heat lose. That was a great game for LBJ, even if the team lost. In game one against the Spurs, LBJ nearly recorded a 20-20-10 game. Only two other player has accomplished that in the finals: Duncan (against NJ). That says something. The Heat lost that game, but LBJ had a great game himself; yet still people suggested he hadn't done enough.


LBJ is different than Kobe and Jordan. Jordan was looking to score, and he would pass when he knew somebody had a better shot and the defense was tough. Kobe... well... I think we all know how much he loves to shoot the ball, even when he doesn't have that great a shot. James though, like Magic, looks to create for other players and looks to get other players involved. He doesn't force the offense like Jordan and Kobe did. He read the other team and plays accordingly.

LBJ hasn't not played his best basketball this series, but he has played good basketball for the most part. Nobody ever asked Magic why he was only scoring in the teens in the finals, so why is it that LBJ has to score 30 to have a good game? With Bosh slumping and Wade not playing to his full potential in the series, the Spurs defense (one of the best in the league) has been able to focus on LBJ. His play, while not up to his standards, has been good.

Is it just me, or do people have too narrow a definition of what makes for a good finals performance? Why is it ok for Magic to average so few points, but when LBJ does it people suggest he's choking. Do so many fans want to see a hall hog/glory hound running a team in the NBA finals? Or should LBJ take a page out of Magic and Duncan's book and help facilitate his teammates to a tune of 5 rings for Magic and 4 for Duncan (and counting).

Thoughts?

Becks2307
06-18-2013, 10:10 AM
Here's why.

Lebron dominates ALL season - then all of a sudden shrinks.

LAKobeBryant
06-18-2013, 10:13 AM
Because media, you hear people compare him to Michael all the time of being the GOAT. The only time you hear LBJ be compared to Magic is the play style but when it comes to being the GOAT you have to compare him to Jordan. That's the category media placed him in.

koreancabbage
06-18-2013, 10:13 AM
people are looking for him to score. and when he can't do that, they deem his performances as failures.

it quite simply boils down to that.

and the funniest thing is when people say he just plains "sucks". when one of those posters comes along - you can pretty much sum up that person's knowledge of basketball.

koreancabbage
06-18-2013, 10:16 AM
Here's why.

Lebron dominates ALL season - then all of a sudden shrinks.

How so? he actually performs the same in both playoffs and regular season. pretty much averages the same numbers in the regular season and playoffs. If anything, it has ALWAYS been his teammates that shrink come playoff time.

Becks2307
06-18-2013, 10:21 AM
How so? he actually performs the same in both playoffs and regular season. pretty much averages the same numbers in the regular season and playoffs. If anything, it has ALWAYS been his teammates that shrink come playoff time.

I didn't say playoffs at all in my post. It's pretty obvious that Lebron's performances in the finals have left alot to be desired, or else we wouldn't even be having this conversation.

koreancabbage
06-18-2013, 10:34 AM
I didn't say playoffs at all in my post. It's pretty obvious that Lebron's performances in the finals have left alot to be desired, or else we wouldn't even be having this conversation.

okay, so what are you talking about? you said Lebron dominates all season long then all of a sudden shrinks. So what were you referring to if not the playoffs? last time I checked, Finals are still in the playoffs.

but we digress to the performance thus far from Lebron ... and his teammates. Maybe exhaustion from overplay.

Pierzynski4Prez
06-18-2013, 10:36 AM
Here's why.

Lebron dominates ALL season - then all of a sudden shrinks.

I agree with this. Throw in the 1st 3 rounds of playoffs too though where he dominates.

Tony_Starks
06-18-2013, 10:38 AM
You can't put Magic and Lebron in the same category. In Magics first finals he did something never to be seen again when it counted....

Becks2307
06-18-2013, 10:39 AM
okay, so what are you talking about? you said Lebron dominates all season long then all of a sudden shrinks. So what were you referring to if not the playoffs? last time I checked, Finals are still in the playoffs.

but we digress to the performance thus far from Lebron ... and his teammates. Maybe exhaustion from overplay.

My bad, I obviously meant finals vs the rest of the playoffs, didn't phrase it well.

Manimal
06-18-2013, 10:39 AM
If he loses this finals series, all of sudden he'll start getting comparison with Wilt.

Freak of nature whose numbers are insane but comes up short on the biggest stage. In fact he will be worse than Wilt who had a worthy adversary in Russell. This guy keeps getting knocked out by a combination of teams.

Orlando, Boston, Dallas, Spurs etc

Hellcrooner
06-18-2013, 10:42 AM
cause kids nowdays are brainwashed into thinking chucker=great player passer= sucky player.

such a shame, hope spurs win with their TEAM ORIENTED basketball wich is what the sport was about in the first place not bout ballhogging to sell more snickers and do the fanciest " jump over a train" tv comercial.

DreamShaker
06-18-2013, 10:46 AM
Magic also had Kareem, Worthy, and Scott. He was a point guard who did what he needed to win. Lebron HAS to score on this Heat team. He is the best scorer on the team by far at this point, and his role as compared to Magic's is very different. Comparing him to Bird is more appropriate, as far as the role on the team.

Heediot
06-18-2013, 10:54 AM
Magic also had Kareem, Worthy, and Scott. He was a point guard who did what he needed to win. Lebron HAS to score on this Heat team. He is the best scorer on the team by far at this point, and his role as compared to Magic's is very different. Comparing him to Bird is more appropriate, as far as the role on the team.

F that. I guarantee you Bosh can score 20 plus and Wade at least 23 without Bron on the Heat. IT's just they turned Bosh into a different player and relegated Wade's usage. They have one of the best 2nd and 3rd options. NO excuse in that department. Wade has been playing a lot better this finals too.

b@llhog24
06-18-2013, 11:00 AM
I saw someone the other day saying that he's playing "terrible." He's under performing sure, but terrible he is not.

freedas
06-18-2013, 11:00 AM
LA KobeBryant thats a funny sig. Lebron is playing good to me these playoffs when he isnt scoring he brings a lot of intangibles to his game like rebounding, passing, defense and creating for others. He doesnt have to drop 30 every night to be effective. I think its his supporting cast need to step up, the bench need to they need to stop acting like a bosh and step up.

FOXHOUND
06-18-2013, 11:08 AM
I get the point you are trying to making, but it's heavily skewered to make LeBron look better for having a poor Finals.

The reason people didn't make a big deal about Magic failing to score 20 point in a game is probably because Magic Johnson only averaged 20 PPG in a season 4 times in his 13 year career, with a career PPG of 19.5 and a high of 23.9. That's a very stark contrast to LeBron James, who has averaged 20 PPG in every season of his career with a career PPG average of 27.6 and a high of 31.4. He also has one scoring title and has contended for them for most of his career.

Magic Johnson was a POINT GUARD. His game was all about running a real and very efficient offense, and scoring at a solid rate on very high efficiency. You point out the games he failed to reach 20 points, but how many shots did he take in those games? What was his FG%? I can point to you a season where Magic Johnson only averaged 17.6 PPG, but in that season he shot .565 from the field and averaged 13.1 APG. You are purposely leaving out a lot of details in this comparison because there is no comparison to be made. Magic Johnson was a PG who happened to be 6'9.

LeBron James is a FORWARD, whether he's lining up at small or power. While he has played as a de-facto PG LeBron James has never been a real point guard. The LeBron James ran offense has always just consisted of pick n rolls and drive and kick outs as the driving force. He has never run a high level offense, and he has always been more of a scorer than passer. People like to try and compare him to Magic because of their height and willingness to pass, but he is not Magic Johnson. He is LeBron James, a player who has the height of a SF, the size of a PF, the athleticism that can match or exceed any wing in history and the handle of a guard.

The thing isn't that LeBron hasn't had scoring games, it's that he's flat out been bad in 3 of the 5 games currently played. Yes, he's averaging only 21.6 PPG, a far drop off from his regular season and previous postseason production. The thing on this more is he's shooting plenty, 20.2 FGA per game. You try to make it sound like he's scoring less because he's just doing other stuff instead. This is not the case as he's only averaging 6.8 AST, which is also below his regular season average.

His shooting line is .436/.316/.737 in the Finals, which is flat out poor. To make matters worse he's only getting to the line 3.8 times per game, which is WAY below his standards. He's been out of it for most of this series, looking dejected and even scared at times to attack. He is constantly questioning his decisions and has failed to impose his will on any game except game 4. Game 1 was all about the Spurs game plan, and they just kept funneling him wherever they wanted and leaving open who they wanted for most of the game.

Simply put LeBron James is playing bad in these NBA Finals, you can't try to spin that bringing up the scoring totals of a player who didn't even average 20 PPG in his career, didn't play the same position and impacted the game in a completely different way.

albertajaysfan
06-18-2013, 11:15 AM
Magic won. It is as simple as that. If LBJ was being a distributor and the Heat were winning he would be praised for it.

The reason he is being criticized is because they are playing .500 ball in the last two rounds after going 66-16 in the regular season where he played at a different level then everyone else.

RiceOnTheRun
06-18-2013, 11:18 AM
Lebron's numbers aren't "bad" but instead sub-par. He's putting up solid numbers but as the best player in the league, you expect a bit more from him. I've defended Lebron before against a lot of criticism but this is one of the times where I have to agree with the critics. Lebron has dropped from his regular efficiency and that's what's hurting the Heat right now. He's severely underperforming his potential and God knows the Heat need all they can get from him during the next two games. The stage is set for Lebron's historic finals performance, now all he needs to do is deliver or else he'll simply be remembered for underperforming in this series.

Becks2307
06-18-2013, 11:19 AM
I get the point you are trying to making, but it's heavily skewered to make LeBron look better for having a poor Finals.

The reason people didn't make a big deal about Magic failing to score 20 point in a game is probably because Magic Johnson only averaged 20 PPG in a season 4 times in his 13 year career, with a career PPG of 19.5 and a high of 23.9. That's a very stark contrast to LeBron James, who has averaged 20 PPG in every season of his career with a career PPG average of 27.6 and a high of 31.4. He also has one scoring title and has contended for them for most of his career.

Magic Johnson was a POINT GUARD. His game was all about running a real and very efficient offense, and scoring at a solid rate on very high efficiency. You point out the games he failed to reach 20 points, but how many shots did he take in those games? What was his FG%? I can point to you a season where Magic Johnson only averaged 17.6 PPG, but in that season he shot .565 from the field and averaged 13.1 APG. You are purposely leaving out a lot of details in this comparison because there is no comparison to be made. Magic Johnson was a PG who happened to be 6'9.

LeBron James is a FORWARD, whether he's lining up at small or power. While he has played as a de-facto PG LeBron James has never been a real point guard. The LeBron James ran offense has always just consisted of pick n rolls and drive and kick outs as the driving force. He has never run a high level offense, and he has always been more of a scorer than passer. People like to try and compare him to Magic because of their height and willingness to pass, but he is not Magic Johnson. He is LeBron James, a player who has the height of a SF, the size of a PF, the athleticism that can match or exceed any wing in history and the handle of a guard.

The thing isn't that LeBron hasn't had scoring games, it's that he's flat out been bad in 3 of the 5 games currently played. Yes, he's averaging only 21.6 PPG, a far drop off from his regular season and previous postseason production. The thing on this more is he's shooting plenty, 20.2 FGA per game. You try to make it sound like he's scoring less because he's just doing other stuff instead. This is not the case as he's only averaging 6.8 AST, which is also below his regular season average.

His shooting line is .436/.316/.737 in the Finals, which is flat out poor. To make matters worse he's only getting to the line 3.8 times per game, which is WAY below his standards. He's been out of it for most of this series, looking dejected and even scared at times to attack. He is constantly questioning his decisions and has failed to impose his will on any game except game 4. Game 1 was all about the Spurs game plan, and they just kept funneling him wherever they wanted and leaving open who they wanted for most of the game.

Simply put LeBron James is playing bad in these NBA Finals, you can't try to spin that bringing up the scoring totals of a player who didn't even average 20 PPG in his career, didn't play the same position and impacted the game in a completely different way.


Magic won. It is as simple as that. If LBJ was being a distributor and the Heat were winning he would be praised for it.

The reason he is being criticized is because they are playing .500 ball in the last two rounds after going 66-16 in the regular season where he played at a different level then everyone else.


Two excellent posts.

Mr.ATLHawks
06-18-2013, 11:26 AM
I will reserve the right to pass judgement until this series is over.
Kobe Bryant's Finals numbers are rather pedestrian compared to his regular season numbers (37 Games 25.3 PPG 5.1 APG 5.7 RPG compared to

Brons (15 games 22.5 PPG 7 APG 8.1 RPG).

While Michael Jordan (35 Games 33.6 PPG 6.0 APG 6.0 RPG)

Yes he looks somewhat timid at times but lets face it Popovich is putting one hell of a game plan together. Nobody is talking about Parker not really doing a whole lot, why? Because Danny Green and a few others have picked up the slack. Lebron shooting percentage is down because *drum roll* he isn't that great of a shooter. Spurs have packed the paint on the Heat have really not given them a reason to deviate from the gameplan.

I would say the bigger issue then Lebron's scoring, is the absolute disappearing act one of the top 5 defenses in the league in the 3 games they have lost. 114 points...113....and also how Kawhi Leonard has abused Lebron on the offensive glass. I'm not sold on the Lebron choking pill, I will say however that he does let other teams dictate how he plays the game a little to much. If you are deferring to teammates and they aren't hitting you have to take over, period. Maybe it isn't in his blood....Its kind of a catch 22. Sometimes the right basketball play isn't the right basketball play.

TheNumber37
06-18-2013, 11:38 AM
lebron is not shrinking he is just playing against real competition... I mean what other powerhouse is in their division that they have to play regularly... imagine if the heat had to fight for division titles with the pacers and bulls....

if LeBron never played the wack teams I think his number would look more human...

can someone find out his stats against teamd with winning records/playoff teams vs others?

FOXHOUND
06-18-2013, 11:52 AM
I will reserve the right to pass judgement until this series is over.
Kobe Bryant's Finals numbers are rather pedestrian compared to his regular season numbers (37 Games 25.3 PPG 5.1 APG 5.7 RPG compared to

Brons (15 games 22.5 PPG 7 APG 8.1 RPG).

While Michael Jordan (35 Games 33.6 PPG 6.0 APG 6.0 RPG)

Yes he looks somewhat timid at times but lets face it Popovich is putting one hell of a game plan together. Nobody is talking about Parker not really doing a whole lot, why? Because Danny Green and a few others have picked up the slack. Lebron shooting percentage is down because *drum roll* he isn't that great of a shooter. Spurs have packed the paint on the Heat have really not given them a reason to deviate from the gameplan.

I would say the bigger issue then Lebron's scoring, is the absolute disappearing act one of the top 5 defenses in the league in the 3 games they have lost. 114 points...113....and also how Kawhi Leonard has abused Lebron on the offensive glass. I'm not sold on the Lebron choking pill, I will say however that he does let other teams dictate how he plays the game a little to much. If you are deferring to teammates and they aren't hitting you have to take over, period. Maybe it isn't in his blood....Its kind of a catch 22. Sometimes the right basketball play isn't the right basketball play.

Good points, especially about LeBron's mentality as a player. I think a series like this is where you can really see that difference in mindset from a Jordan/Kobe type and a LeBron type. Neither way is particularly right or wrong, depending on the teams they're on or the circumstance, but in this series his way has been wrong. Or maybe it's more that being a player of his talent that his mentality can do him wrong at times? Not really sure, but obviously it's worked out for him for the most part.

Side note, those averages for Kobe are pretty much his career averages. Even if you take only his seasons as a starter they're 27.4 PPG, 5.7 REB and 5.1 AST. He has a slight drop off in PPG, but 4 of his 7 Finals came from 2000-2004. In those years his regular season PPG average was 26.2. That also is considering that his big scoring year in that span, 30 PPG in 2003, was the one year they didn't make the Finals.

Edit: Also, about Tony Parker. There's only one way to put it, Tony Parker is not LeBron James. He's not as good, not as talented and hasn't won 4 MVPs in the last 5 or 6 seasons. There's also the hamstring thing, which badly affected him in the second half of game 4.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 11:56 AM
Lets just call it what it seems to be, choking, under-performing, etc...
My question is this, is it better to choke before getting to the Finals? That way you avoid the correlating questions that you lack the mental capacity to perform on the big stage. People seem to disregard struggles on smaller stages, even tho, logically, the inability to get past inferior competition before carrying your team to the Finals in the first place is a lesser accomplishment/ greater failure.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:02 PM
Here's why.

Lebron dominates ALL season - then all of a sudden shrinks.

I don't get whats hard to grasp. Dominate better defenses all year long, including playoffs, including the series directly before the Finals, then shrinks and his numbers completely plummet - not just decline - plummet.

'Good basketball' isn't good enough at the highest stage for one of the 5-10 best players who ever played the game.

Sandman
06-18-2013, 12:07 PM
Something is screwed up when Bill Simmons is on with Magic Rose and Wilbon and he's the one that gets it right.

LeBron struggles when you can match his athleticism in the paint. Aside from the fact that he's no Paul Pierce with his jumpshot, it chips away at one of the best parts of his game and thats driving in and kicking out.

Ideally I don't think Bosh and Wade are the best fits because they have similar weaknesses. I think they'd be better off with a bigger PF/C first of all. Second not to knock Wade, I think he's a better shooter than LeBron, but when LeBron can't bully his way to the rim thats when Wade should be taking over. I know some of that is being hurt but some of that is he's the same type of slasher.

I'm not trying to knock LeBron, obviously it was good enough to win last year and easily could be good enough to win this year, but this is the gap between " easily best player on the planet" and that translating into dominance instead of game 7s.

KnickaBocka.44
06-18-2013, 12:16 PM
How so? he actually performs the same in both playoffs and regular season. pretty much averages the same numbers in the regular season and playoffs. If anything, it has ALWAYS been his teammates that shrink come playoff time.

He is shooting a touch over 7% worse from the field in the playoffs than he did in the regular season. He is shooting 13% worse in this series than he did in the regular season.

Sly Guy
06-18-2013, 12:16 PM
I find it laughable when LBJ drops a triple double and it's still called a bad game.

Sandman
06-18-2013, 12:17 PM
He is shooting a touch over 7% worse from the field in the playoffs than he did in the regular season. He is shooting 13% worse in this series than he did in the regular season.

Is he really shooting worse or does he have fewer dunks?

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:17 PM
Lets just call it what it seems to be, choking, under-performing, etc...
My question is this, is it better to choke before getting to the Finals? That way you avoid the correlating questions that you lack the mental capacity to perform on the big stage. People seem to disregard struggles on smaller stages, even tho, logically, the inability to get past inferior competition before carrying your team to the Finals in the first place is a lesser accomplishment/ greater failure.

You can think of something worse for any scenario you want to come up with in life. Of course its not better to choke earlier. But that really is irrelevant to the conversation. This is this era's MJ, this era's Magic, and he currently plays on this era's superteam, he is to be held to the same standards as the 5 best players to play the game because thats how good he is, making the Finals on his star studded team is a must for this guy, his team was penciled in to the Finals before the playoffs started and many said they had a chance to sweep 12-0 straight to the Finals.

I really just don't even see what your trying to get at with this here. Are you saying he should be lauded for not losing to the Bucks, Bulls 3rd stringers and the 49 win Pacers? Guys like LeBron on teams like the Heat better not struggle on smaller stages, and better not lose to vastly inferior competition, or their legacies would be completely shattered. His legacy is going to be cracked if these Finals struggles continue, but were supposed to praise him for not shattering it? Praise for doing exactly what was expected (and struggling along the way worse than expected)?

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:22 PM
He is shooting a touch over 7% worse from the field in the playoffs than he did in the regular season. He is shooting 13% worse in this series than he did in the regular season.

He shot under 40% 4 times all season long (5.2%), he shot under 40% 4 times in these playoffs (19.1%).

He shot under 50% 12 times all season long (15.8%), he shot under 50% 13 times these playoffs (59.1%)

Chronz
06-18-2013, 12:41 PM
I really just don't even see what your trying to get at with this here. Are you saying he should be lauded for not losing to the Bucks, Bulls 3rd stringers and the 49 win Pacers?
Its about perspective. Magic Johnson struggled to put away a sub.500 team among others and has lost to inferior teams than his before making the Finals. These occurrences have happened to everyone except MJ I think.



Guys like LeBron on teams like the Heat better not struggle on smaller stages, and better not lose to vastly inferior competition, or their legacies would be completely shattered.
What is this based on? How come those other legacies held up just fine, if by completely shattered you mean hes prolly gonna have to settle for 2nd best of All-Time or a distant 8th or something, I dont consider that to be shattered. Depends on who you are comparing him to really.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:51 PM
Dp

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:51 PM
Its about perspective. Magic Johnson struggled to put away a sub.500 team among others and has lost to inferior teams than his before making the Finals. These occurrences have happened to everyone except MJ I think.



What is this based on? How come those other legacies held up just fine, if by completely shattered you mean hes prolly gonna have to settle for 2nd best of All-Time or a distant 8th or something, I dont consider that to be shattered. Depends on who you are comparing him to really.

LeBron has already lost to inferior teams before the Finals in Cleveland. When he's on the hands-down best team in the NBA thats not acceptable. When did a prime (not second year) Magic lose to a legitimately inferior team during the heart of Showtime?

I'm saying the best player, in his prime, with the best supporting cast in the NBA, cannot lose to vastly inferior competition in early rounds without shattering his reputation. I stand by that. Magic losing at the age of 21 to the twin towers doesn't change that. Magic needing 6 games to beat the Suns (who made the WCF despite being .500 regular season) doesn't change that either. Just like LeBron needing 7 to oust Indiana won't hamper his legacy.

You don't think LeBron falling to number 8 wouldn't be considered 'shattered' when he is the closest thing we've ever seen to having the ability to pass MJ and he is playing on a team capable of being an Bulls-like dynasty?

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 12:57 PM
Also, when your championships completely trump your number of upsets, that matters. Magic has 5 rings, repeat titles, and I believe 3 Finals MVPs. I think your allowed a slip up here and there when your accomplishments in the playoffs/finals FAR outweigh the slip ups. 1-3 in the Finals with 2 of them coming as favorites is going to be hard for LeBron to overcome when it comes to his legacy when its all said and done.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 01:10 PM
LeBron has already lost to inferior teams before the Finals in Cleveland.
Thats highly debatable. I dont see any inferior teams at all.



When did a prime (not second year) Magic lose to a legitimately inferior team during the heart of Showtime?
So losing to a sub.500 team is ok because its his 2nd year(this despite already being raved over for his performance as a rook)? I suppose being a cancerous locker room distraction isn't a big deal either because he was so young. But to answer your question he lost to an injured Rockets team in 86.


I'm saying the best player, in his prime, with the best supporting cast in the NBA, cannot lose to vastly inferior competition in early rounds without shattering his reputation.
Based on what tho? Most people I respect consider KAJ to be superior to Magic, and KAJ has lost to vastly inferior teams as well (in disgraceful fashion I might add). Hes still arguably the GOAT, so if you think Bron has struggled then you should see some of KAJ work.



I stand by that.
But can you defend it?


Magic losing at the age of 21 to the twin towers doesn't change that.
You are confusing your choke jobs. At 21 he faced a sub .500 team led by Moses, both he and KAJ were defensive liabilities in that series. The Twin towers collapse came in his prime.



You don't think LeBron falling to number 8 wouldn't be shattered when he is the closest thing we've ever seen to having the ability to pass MJ and he is playing on a team capable of being an MJ-like dynasty?
Prolly semantics but I think the more appropriate word would be disappointing. But it wouldn't be for the reasons you've given, I dont agree that he is playing on a team capable of that Bulls run, those Bulls were so far ahead of the competition that I dont see that ever happening again. IIRC the gap between the Bulls and the next best opponent in some of those MJ years, was equivalent to the gap between #2 and like #8 by most team barometers.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 01:14 PM
Also, when your championships completely trump your number of upsets, that matters. Magic has 5 rings, repeat titles, and I believe 3 Finals MVPs. I think your allowed a slip up here and there when your accomplishments in the playoffs/finals FAR outweigh the slip ups. 1-3 in the Finals with 2 of them coming as favorites is going to be hard for LeBron to overcome when it comes to his legacy when its all said and done.
Again, "hard to overcome" depends on who you are comparing him to.

And we both know it depends on how he finishes his career but I dont focus on the 1-3 mark. That appearance in Cleveland was a godsend, you get nothing but extra credit for that loss. Most stars couldn't have done what he did that year.

And what do you mean coming as the favorites? Is popularity suppose to trump actual analysis? How do you define favorite? Correct me if Im wrong but wasn't OKC favored? They shouldn't have been but the futility of the vegas barometer isn't my point, Im just curious to your methods

Chronz
06-18-2013, 01:17 PM
I also hope you realize that Magic not being in his prime at 21 is a knock against him, that Bron entered his prime at a younger age is something that should help him in that comparison.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 01:35 PM
Thats highly debatable. I dont see any inferior teams at all.

66 win Cavs losing with HCA to the Orlando Magic missing their all star PG?


So losing to a sub.500 team is ok because its his 2nd year(this despite already being raved over for his performance as a rook)? I suppose being a cancerous locker room distraction isn't a big deal either because he was so young. But to answer your question he lost to an injured Rockets team in 86.

I would have to learn more about this Rockets team - because they were a 40 win team that made the NBA Finals. But yes, I think its fair to give anyone a bit of a pass for losing at the age of 21. Which is why my argument focused pretty much solely on Prime LeBron's Miami era until you started bringing up Magic losing once as a favorite like they should be treated as equals - despite Magic's massive accomplishments in the NBA Finals. It also looks like Magic missed the larger majority of that entire season. I mean your trying to slight Magic for NOT executing a 3-peat. Lets compare him and Lebron as equals in that regard when LeBron in somewhere in the same stratosphere when it comes to playoff accomplishments.


But can you defend it?

I can if you focus on my argument instead of tossing out oranges and trying to compare them to apples.


You are confusing your choke jobs. At 21 he faced a sub .500 team led by Moses, both he and KAJ were defensive liabilities in that series. The Twin towers collapse came in his prime.

LOL. Chokejob? I just looked back at that twin towers "collapse":

Game 1: 26 points, 7 rebounds, 18 assists, 60% shooting
Game 2: 24 points, 8 rebounds, 19 assists, 50% shooting
Game 3: 17 points, 8 rebounds, 20 assists, 55% shooting
Game 4: 20 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists, 50% shooting
Game 5: 24 points, 5 rebounds, 13 assists, 53% shooting

GTFO with that nonsense "chokejob". Aren't you a Laker fan? The dude was going for a 3 peat and put up video game numbers, you call that a chokejob?


Prolly semantics but I think the more appropriate word would be disappointing. But it wouldn't be for the reasons you've given, I dont agree that he is playing on a team capable of that Bulls run, those Bulls were so far ahead of the competition that I dont see that ever happening again. IIRC the gap between the Bulls and the next best opponent in some of those MJ years, was equivalent to the gap between #2 and like #8 by most team barometers.

This isn't even really worth debating and besides the point. But would would be your reasoning for calling it dissappointing that is different than my reasoning?

Again, a 21 year old Magic =/ a prime 29 year old LeBron. Magic losing in the playoffs while putting up some of the gaudiest stats I have ever seen =/ LeBron's stats falling into the toilet while losing in the playoffs. Magic being one of the most accomplished NBA Finals players ever with championships and Finals MVP's out the *** allows him a 'slip up' here and there - LeBron has nowhere near the Championship clout that Magic has to slip up the way he has individually, lose as a odds-on favorite, and not take a major dent in his legacy.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 01:40 PM
Sorry - after calling Magic's performance in '86 a chokejob I have no more patience for this discussion.

LeBron doesn't have the clout yet to start comparing his collapses to Magic's like it won't effect LeBron's legacy. It won't affect LeBrons legacy when he has 5 titles and 3 Finals MVP's, and if he was putting up video game numbers in these losses I would be more than happy to give him a pass. He can't be the biggest underachiever on the team during theses losses on get a pass, and he can't freeze in the spotlight again, and again, and again in these losses and be one of the biggest underachievers on the team.

Even when his teams were overmatched - if you want to pretend like they were in 2010 - his stats went in the gutter. 2009 he put up monster scoring numbers but shot well below his season average FG%. 2011 his stats went in the gutter. 2013 his stats are in the gutter. You can't let that happen if you are one of the GOATs. Just ask Magic - if your gonna go out you better go out swinging, not bend over and take it like LeBron historically does.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 01:43 PM
I also hope you realize that Magic not being in his prime at 21 is a knock against him, that Bron entered his prime at a younger age is something that should help him in that comparison.

I would never bash LeBron for losing a playoff series in his second year, especially to a team that went on to make the NBA Finals. I have tried to keep this discussion to his Miami Heat tenure, while he has been the best player in the league, on the best team in the league. You have forced me to move past that with your oranges.

amos1er
06-18-2013, 01:47 PM
I get the point you are trying to making, but it's heavily skewered to make LeBron look better for having a poor Finals.

The reason people didn't make a big deal about Magic failing to score 20 point in a game is probably because Magic Johnson only averaged 20 PPG in a season 4 times in his 13 year career, with a career PPG of 19.5 and a high of 23.9. That's a very stark contrast to LeBron James, who has averaged 20 PPG in every season of his career with a career PPG average of 27.6 and a high of 31.4. He also has one scoring title and has contended for them for most of his career.

Magic Johnson was a POINT GUARD. His game was all about running a real and very efficient offense, and scoring at a solid rate on very high efficiency. You point out the games he failed to reach 20 points, but how many shots did he take in those games? What was his FG%? I can point to you a season where Magic Johnson only averaged 17.6 PPG, but in that season he shot .565 from the field and averaged 13.1 APG. You are purposely leaving out a lot of details in this comparison because there is no comparison to be made. Magic Johnson was a PG who happened to be 6'9.

LeBron James is a FORWARD, whether he's lining up at small or power. While he has played as a de-facto PG LeBron James has never been a real point guard. The LeBron James ran offense has always just consisted of pick n rolls and drive and kick outs as the driving force. He has never run a high level offense, and he has always been more of a scorer than passer. People like to try and compare him to Magic because of their height and willingness to pass, but he is not Magic Johnson. He is LeBron James, a player who has the height of a SF, the size of a PF, the athleticism that can match or exceed any wing in history and the handle of a guard.

The thing isn't that LeBron hasn't had scoring games, it's that he's flat out been bad in 3 of the 5 games currently played. Yes, he's averaging only 21.6 PPG, a far drop off from his regular season and previous postseason production. The thing on this more is he's shooting plenty, 20.2 FGA per game. You try to make it sound like he's scoring less because he's just doing other stuff instead. This is not the case as he's only averaging 6.8 AST, which is also below his regular season average.

His shooting line is .436/.316/.737 in the Finals, which is flat out poor. To make matters worse he's only getting to the line 3.8 times per game, which is WAY below his standards. He's been out of it for most of this series, looking dejected and even scared at times to attack. He is constantly questioning his decisions and has failed to impose his will on any game except game 4. Game 1 was all about the Spurs game plan, and they just kept funneling him wherever they wanted and leaving open who they wanted for most of the game.

Simply put LeBron James is playing bad in these NBA Finals, you can't try to spin that bringing up the scoring totals of a player who didn't even average 20 PPG in his career, didn't play the same position and impacted the game in a completely different way.

Great post!!! :clap:

Couldn't have said it better myself.

Oh and you forgot to mention how Magic was clutch from day one playing center for an injured Kareem in game 6 of the 1980 finals where he scored 42 points, 15 rebounds, and 7 assists. He won the finals MVP that year AS A ROOKIE! Lebron at age 27 chocked in the NBA finals with a prime D-Wade who was balling hard core at the time and a prime Chris Bosh who was the best 3rd option in the league at the time and also currently. Not to mention his 3 point snipers...a luxury that Magic didn't have as well. All this against a team the Heat were favored against and had HCA against. So lets sum this up...A rookie Magic dominated and performed in the clutch when his Hall of Fame center was out. A veteran Lebron chocked when he had by far the better team with a fully healthy roster. Not to be rude, but please don't compare Lebron to Magic ever again. Magic is in a whole other universe as far as I'm concerned. Lebron has a long long long way to go to even be compared to him.

kubernetes
06-18-2013, 01:56 PM
I find it laughable when LBJ drops a triple double and it's still called a bad game.

Pure numbers don't tell the whole story.

If this were, say, Andre Miller putting up those numbers, everyone would say it was an amazing performance.

But this is Lebron James, the near-consensus best player in the league and widely touted as a Top 5/10/15 player of all time. He's always competitive in the scoring title, and he seems unstoppable for most of the regular season. We expect him to dominate games, and we especially want to see him take control of big games. He came up big last year, but this year he's back to pretending he's a role-player. A triple double? Sorry, but he's got to do more if the Heat want to win more titles.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 02:00 PM
Pure numbers don't tell the whole story.

If this were, say, Andre Miller putting up those numbers, everyone would say it was an amazing performance.

But this is Lebron James, the near-consensus best player in the league and widely touted as a Top 5/10/15 player of all time. He's always competitive in the scoring title, and he seems unstoppable for most of the regular season. We expect him to dominate games, and we especially want to see him take control of big games. He came up big last year, but this year he's back to pretending he's a role-player. A triple double? Sorry, but he's got to do more if the Heat want to win more titles.

Apparently expecting guys to at least come CLOSE to producing what they did all season long and from rounds 1-3 in the playoffs, once the finally reach the NBA Finals, is just completely unfair to them. Shame on us for expecting LeBron to perform to his average ability on the biggest stage.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 02:01 PM
Magic tore cartilage in his knee and missed 45 games and came back right before the playoffs for the 80/81 season. That is not a "chokejob" We don't consider Jordan a failure because they didn't win when he came back from retirement.

Magic made the finals 9 times out of 11 real chances. I exclude the year he came back after 4 years of retirement and the year he was injured.

D-Leethal
06-18-2013, 02:02 PM
Magic tore cartilage in his knee and missed 45 games and came back right before the playoffs for the 80/81 season. That is not a "chokejob" We don't consider Jordan a failure because they didn't win when he came back from retirement.

Magic made the finals 9 times out of 11 real chances. I exclude the year he came back after 4 years of retirement and the year he was injured.

Thanks for the input. I saw he was injured and only played 37 games but I am too young to remember those teams. That Rockets team was interesting though - 40 wins and an NBA Finals berth.

Seems like Chronz two 'chokejobs' got shot down pretty hard though. '86 looked like one of the best individual playoff series performances I've ever seen at least judging by his video game-like box scores.

amos1er
06-18-2013, 02:07 PM
Magic tore cartilage in his knee and missed 45 games and came back right before the playoffs for the 80/81 season. That is not a "chokejob" We don't consider Jordan a failure because they didn't win when he came back from retirement.

Magic made the finals 9 times out of 11 real chances. I exclude the year he came back after 4 years of retirement and the year he was injured.

Magic also played against far tougher opponents that Lebron faced over there in the joke of an eastern conference and still advanced to the finals more times. Magic also had tougher opponents in the finals as well. Magic never played a team as young and inexperienced as OKC. Had he, it would have been the weakest opponent he won a title against. Once Lebron wins a title against a team near as good as the 80's Celtics, we can talk.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 02:29 PM
And we both know it depends on how he finishes his career but I dont focus on the 1-3 mark. That appearance in Cleveland was a godsend, you get nothing but extra credit for that loss. Most stars couldn't have done what he did that year.

Actually, we seen several different stars take crap teammates to the finals out if the east the past decade. Reggie was not surrounded by superstars. JKidd did it twice with Kenyon Martin as his number two. Iverson did it with a 34 year old Mutumbo as the next best player. Lebron did it once, Dwight beat Lebron and his crap cast with a crap cast if his own. I give nobody credit for coming out of the east those years because somebody has to. And the way that all those teams were dismantled in the finals lets us know that they should not have been there in the first place if the league was more dispersed instead if all the good teams being in the west.

amos1er
06-18-2013, 03:09 PM
Actually, we seen several different stars take crap teammates to the finals out if the east the past decade. Reggie was not surrounded by superstars. JKidd did it twice with Kenyon Martin as his number two. Iverson did it with a 34 year old Mutumbo as the next best player. Lebron did it once, Dwight beat Lebron and his crap cast with a crap cast if his own. I give nobody credit for coming out of the east those years because somebody has to. And the way that all those teams were dismantled in the finals lets us know that they should not have been there in the first place if the league was more dispersed instead if all the good teams being in the west.

Some very excellent points. Surely Lebrons run to the finals in 2007 was amongst the easiest in NBA history. In the first round he faced a Wizards team absent of their two best players. In the second round he faced a banged up Nets team that was missing their center. In the ECF, he faced a Detriot team with no Ben Wallace and a ton of locker room issues concerning their coach Flip Saunders. In that historic game five everyone raves about, no one mentions that their only legit low post big man Antonio Mcdyess was ejected after 4 minutes. Rasheed their next best low post defender later admitted that he quit on his coach mentally during that game. Lets take it for what it is and not overrate it like many do and call it one of the most impressive performances in playoff history. Pistons best rim defender, McDyess, ejected after 4 mins! Rasheed quit, CWebb fossil. LeBron had superhighway to basket. Layup drill! Joke. While it was impressive in terms of his development as a basketball talent, it was highly overrated and an obvious attempt from the media to build up their investment in Lebron James. Anyone remember LeBron missed 2 FTs w/ 1:50 left that helped Det force OT? Then AIRBALLED open game-winning jumper w/ 7 secs left in OT!

Chronz
06-18-2013, 03:50 PM
66 win Cavs losing with HCA to the Orlando Magic missing their all star PG?
Id rather not go down this road, we both know where it leads. Im just thankful you're not showing me pointless ESPN predictions ala JB. Im going to argue that the Magic were more talented and that the Cavs were the deeper regular season team. If you want to get into the specifics we can but Id much rather agree to disagree.


I would have to learn more about this Rockets team - because they were a 40 win team that made the NBA Finals. But yes, I think its fair to give anyone a bit of a pass for losing at the age of 21. Which is why my argument focused pretty much solely on Prime LeBron's Miami era until you started bringing up Magic losing once as a favorite like they should be treated as equals - despite Magic's massive accomplishments in the NBA Finals.
The fact that LeBron entered his prime at a younger age is another strength in this comparison. And Magic has choked in the NBA Finals ("Tragic" year) as well. I brought up Magic (and Kareem) as an example of Tier 1 stars who have suffered embarrassing defeats.



It also looks like Magic missed the larger majority of that entire season. I mean your trying to slight Magic for NOT executing a 3-peat.
Not at all, just to put away a sub.500 team, the chemistry problems that arose in part due to Magic is another significant issue. Either way, the point remains it was a setback season with nothing to be proud of. But if you want to dismiss it because Magic was a pup, thats fine with me, its a crutch Bron doesn't need at the same age.



Lets compare him and Lebron as equals in that regard when LeBron in somewhere in the same stratosphere when it comes to playoff accomplishments.
Who said anything about equals? Bron isnt even past guys like Moses yet, thats kind of related to the fact that his career is still progressing. I mean think about how done we thought Duncans career was a year or so ago. Now he may actually significantly alter his stature in history at the ripe old age of 36.



I can if you focus on my argument instead of tossing out oranges and trying to compare them to apples.
I dont think you get my argument. Plenty of greats have had FAR worse moments and havent seen their legacy "crushed" or whatever it was.


LOL. Chokejob? I just looked back at that twin towers "collapse":

Game 1: 26 points, 7 rebounds, 18 assists, 60% shooting
Game 2: 24 points, 8 rebounds, 19 assists, 50% shooting
Game 3: 17 points, 8 rebounds, 20 assists, 55% shooting
Game 4: 20 points, 12 rebounds, 11 assists, 50% shooting
Game 5: 24 points, 5 rebounds, 13 assists, 53% shooting

GTFO with that nonsense "chokejob". Aren't you a Laker fan? The dude was going for a 3 peat and put up video game numbers, you call that a chokejob?

Much in the same way that Bron "choked" vs the Orlando Magic wouldnt you say? Both got the gentlemens sweep vs a team with a lesser record, an injured PG and extreme matchup advantage with the bigs. Statistically Brons production was far more impressive given the era/team related context. Almost eery.

But I was wrong, thats not a choke job as an individual, just as a leader. Which depending on the person can be pretty irrelevant. Ill admit Magic probably isnt the best case example for Bron. But plenty of comparable greats are. KAJ being one. Wilt another. Bird.... etc.. its only Michael that has that halo of invincibility. Thats all I was trying to get at.


This isn't even really worth debating and besides the point. But would would be your reasoning for calling it dissappointing that is different than my reasoning?
If he were to finish where you say I would assume its because moments like G.3 have become common place, the disappointment comes in his own play but with regards to historical comparisons, he can have moments like this and overcome them in the future the way many greats have. Maybe Magic Johnson isnt the best example, but you would agree that KAJ is a player MANY find superior to Magic Johnson and he has had MULTIPLE downtrodden moments.



Even when his teams were overmatched - if you want to pretend like they were in 2010 - his stats went in the gutter. 2009 he put up monster scoring numbers but shot well below his season average FG%. 2011 his stats went in the gutter. 2013 his stats are in the gutter. You can't let that happen if you are one of the GOATs. Just ask Magic - if your gonna go out you better go out swinging, not bend over and take it like LeBron historically does.
I concede, the example to Magic was poor if you are going to discount his performance even though he was a defending champion.

But what about the other greats not named Magic?


Curious tho, is Magic Johnson your #2?

Chronz
06-18-2013, 03:57 PM
Magic tore cartilage in his knee and missed 45 games and came back right before the playoffs for the 80/81 season. That is not a "chokejob" We don't consider Jordan a failure because they didn't win when he came back from retirement.
But we do consider it a lost season, the likes of which resulted in a championship team (for Magic) to be destroyed by a sub.500 team, and there was alot of controversy centered around Magic, chemistry became a real concern around this time. He would soon get players/coaches traded in the ensuing months. This was not a great time for Magic. Soon thereafter came the Tragic Johnson games.

Curious, what do you consider a bigger mark. The Tragic series or the loss to a sub .500 team. I get that you find neither to be harsh but relatively speaking, which is worse?


Magic made the finals 9 times out of 11 real chances. I exclude the year he came back after 4 years of retirement and the year he was injured.
Yea but the West was extremely weak during most of those years and he wasn't his teams best player for much of those appearances. If you look up the defensive rankings of the teams Magic has faced, you find alot of fluff.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 04:03 PM
Actually, we seen several different stars take crap teammates to the finals out if the east the past decade. Reggie was not surrounded by superstars. JKidd did it twice with Kenyon Martin as his number two. Iverson did it with a 34 year old Mutumbo as the next best player. Lebron did it once, Dwight beat Lebron and his crap cast with a crap cast if his own. I give nobody credit for coming out of the east those years because somebody has to. And the way that all those teams were dismantled in the finals lets us know that they should not have been there in the first place if the league was more dispersed instead if all the good teams being in the west.
None did it quite like Bron. Bron is the only one who can claim to having an inferior team + a heavy reliance on him.

Those Cavs were unable to win a single game that Bron missed IIRC, compared to the Magic who were able to win a PLAYOFF game without Dwight. The Sixers relied on AI in similar fashion offensively, but saying he had a 34 year old Mutombo doesn't sound as supporting as saying AI had the games Defensive Player of the Year, 6moy, and COY. Most of the Philly awards were bogus that year so the truth of his support definitely lies in the middle but I have no issues saying AI had the best team in the Conference whereas the Cavs were at least met by a perennial/prideful power in Detroit. A team that would continue to compete for a title

amos1er
06-18-2013, 04:08 PM
None did it quite like Bron. Bron is the only one who can claim to having an inferior team + a heavy reliance on him.

Those Cavs were unable to win a single game that Bron missed IIRC, compared to the Magic who were able to win a PLAYOFF game without Dwight. The Sixers relied on AI in similar fashion offensively, but saying he had a 34 year old Mutombo doesn't sound as supporting as saying AI had the games Defensive Player of the Year, 6moy, and COY. Most of the Philly awards were bogus that year so the truth of his support definitely lies in the middle but I have no issues saying AI had the best team in the Conference whereas the Cavs were at least met by a perennial/prideful power in Detroit. A team that would continue to compete for a title

He made an excellent point about how others had done what Lebron had done before though. How is Lebron the only one who can claim inferior team + a heavy reliance on him in comparison to Kidd, Reggie, and Iverson??? To what degree can you actually prove that they were all that weaker or that they relied on him heavier. That sounds like your opinion to me.

Sounds to me like the media just made a bigger deal about it when Lebron did it because he was their cashcow/goldenchild. That is my opinion.

RiceOnTheRun
06-18-2013, 04:39 PM
Magic also played against far tougher opponents that Lebron faced over there in the joke of an eastern conference and still advanced to the finals more times. Magic also had tougher opponents in the finals as well. Magic never played a team as young and inexperienced as OKC. Had he, it would have been the weakest opponent he won a title against. Once Lebron wins a title against a team near as good as the 80's Celtics, we can talk.

This is why I'm thinking this is Lebron's title to take now. Down 3-2 in the finals against arguably the most dominant franchise the past decade and a half? This is where he needs to step it up and take control of his own legacy. He's talked and shown his dominance throughout most of the playoffs and regular season, this is his time to put up or shut up. Even as a supporter of him, it's undeniable that he's been underperforming and these one or two games are going to define his career thus far.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 04:41 PM
How is Lebron the only one who can claim inferior team + a heavy reliance on him in comparison to Kidd, Reggie, and Iverson??? To what degree can you actually prove that they were all that weaker or that they relied on him heavier. That sounds like your opinion to me.

Because the load they carry and the efficiency at which they do so differ greatly. As for the teams. When it came to the Sixers or Pacers, they were CLEARLY the best teams out East.
Of course this is all opinion, not sure how you expect someone to prove anything definitively, but if you are covertly asking if the objective evidence (aka stats) backs me, then yes. They do. Look up any measure (individual or team oriented) you wish you will find a stark contrast in the numbers.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 04:42 PM
Dp

RaiderLakersA's
06-18-2013, 05:08 PM
Thoughts?

How's this: Let's stop comparing LeBron to Michael. Let's stop comparing him to Magic, too, while we're at it. It will NEVER be an apples to apples comparison.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 05:18 PM
But we do consider it a lost season, the likes of which resulted in a championship team (for Magic) to be destroyed by a sub.500 team, and there was alot of controversy centered around Magic, chemistry became a real concern around this time. He would soon get players/coaches traded in the ensuing months. This was not a great time for Magic. Soon thereafter came the Tragic Johnson games.

It was not a good time but with hindsight, I think we can agree that it was for the best. He got rid of Westhead and they brought in Riley and they took off from there. I also think we can agree that any chemistry issues would not be because Magic is a bad teammate. To a man everyone loved playing with him.


Curious, what do you consider a bigger mark. The Tragic series or the loss to a sub .500 team. I get that you find neither to be harsh but relatively speaking, which is worse?

Without a doubt in my mind the Tragic series. I rewatched that and even knowing the outcome he pissed me off. He looked like he was afraid of the moment.


Yea but the West was extremely weak during most of those years and he wasn't his teams best player for much of those appearances. If you look up the defensive rankings of the teams Magic has faced, you find alot of fluff.[/

The same thing with the east for the past 15 years. Lebron has taken advantage of it but not as much as Magic. Magic was in a weak conference but showed that his teams belonged with the elite of any confernece by winning 5 titles in that decade. If they had been beaten up by the east, I would agree that making the finals that many times in a weak conference is not that impressive.

That is why I dont get too excited when I see Lebron get to the finals 4 times in 10 years. Because if he loses again, it kind of shows that the best team in the east is like being the tallest midget. If they would have won 3 out of 4 as he really should have if we are honest with ourselves, then he leads elite teams no matter what conference he comes out of.

beliges
06-18-2013, 05:56 PM
If LBJ wins 5 titles then he could have choked all he wanted because nobody would care. Just like nobody cares about magic choking. But if lebron continues to disappear in the finals and if he loses yet another finals with the best team in the league surely that will have a significant negative impact on his legacy and justifiably so.

Look people are trying to say LBJ sucks while others think he's already one of the best 5 players ever. Both sides are horribly wrong, but this series will akways and forever have a drastic impact on his legacy. And if he wants to be among the magics, mjs and kobes, the ONLY way for him to do that is to come up huge for his team and win title after title after title.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 06:01 PM
None did it quite like Bron. Bron is the only one who can claim to having an inferior team + a heavy reliance on him. Those Cavs were unable to win a single game that Bron missed IIRC, compared to the Magic who were able to win a PLAYOFF game without Dwight

What do you mean heavy reliance? I would say that the Magic relied on Dwight just as much defensively and what they asked of him offensively as what Lebron was asked. Also the game that Dwight missed was against the Sixers who were 41-41 and had a .16 SRS that year. Thats not saying too much. Dwights next best playoff performer on that team was Marcin Gortat who had a 15.6 PER and .165 WS/48. Needless to say that is not so great when he could not get off the bench due to playing Dwights position. The next best player that got major minutes was Michael Pietrus who had a 14.0 PER and a .140 WS/48. Rashard Lewis could also be considered in the running for 2nd best player with 16.9 PER and .132 WS/48. That is pretty cruddy. That team would have no business getting to the finals if not for Dwight. And that crap team would not get to the finals if they were the Sacramento Magic.


The Sixers relied on AI in similar fashion offensively, but saying he had a 34 year old Mutombo doesn't sound as supporting as saying AI had the games Defensive Player of the Year, 6moy, and COY. Most of the Philly awards were bogus that year so the truth of his support definitely lies in the middle but I have no issues saying AI had the best team in the Conference whereas the Cavs were at least met by a perennial/prideful power in Detroit. A team that would continue to compete for a title

But Mutumbo was traded to the Sixers and only played 26 games with them. He was okay on defense in the playoffs with the Sixers. He had a 102 defensive rating but overall played pretty good. He had a 19.6 PER and a .184 WS/48. And it must have been a down year for 6th men because McKie was garbage. During the regular season he had a 15.1 PER and a WS/48 of .118. Awful! He did average 11 pts, 4 rebounds and 5 assist in 31 miutes of play which is okay I guess. But that all disapeared in the playoffs when he had a 15.4 PER and a WS/48 of .100 and shot 41% fg or .50 TS%. And they beat the previous years eastern conference champs as well.

Lebron is the best player out of all those guys by a WIDE margin. I am not saying he is equal to them in any way. I am just saying that if we are going to give him a pass for getting swept by the Spurs and playing horrible while doing it, I say that we dont toot his horn too much for doing what numerous other stars have done the past 13 years. And that is come out on top in a conference that has been on the down turn for that entire time.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 06:28 PM
Also, in regards to losing to inferior competition. I think that Kobe and the Lakers have to be looked at as to never losing to inferior teams. During Kobes tenure he has only lost to the eventual champion or western conference champs 9 out of the 12 times he did not win the title. Once he did not make the playoffs and twice he lost to the Suns. Talk about not getting a break. Every year they play the best of the best. That is what happens when you are in the west. If the Lakers were in the east I think it is safe to say they may have made the finals 10 to 11 times.

Below is what team beat them and what that teams went on to accomplish.

96/97 Jazz made the finals
97/98 Jazz made the finals
98/99 Spurs won the title
99/00 Champs
00/01 Champs
01/02 Champs
02/03 Spurs won title
03/04 Pistons won title
04/05 Did not make playoffs
05/06 Lost to 54-28 Suns. Suns made western finals
06/07 Lost to 61-21 Suns. Suns lost to eventual champs the Spurs
07/08 Celtics won the title
08/09 Champs
09/10 Champs
10/11 Mavericks won the title
11/12 Thunder made the finals
12/13 Spurs made the finals and are one game away from being champs

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-18-2013, 06:41 PM
I also hope you realize that Magic not being in his prime at 21 is a knock against him, that Bron entered his prime at a younger age is something that should help him in that comparison.

Magic was having a better year than Lebron was when he was 21 and Lebron was 22. That was the year Lebron made the finals. Magics prime was from a rookie to the year he retired.

Look at Magics regular season vs Lebrons regular season. Magic came back after injury for the playoffs and was 1/3rd the player he was before and going forward.
http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=jamesle01&y1=2007&p2=johnsma02&y2=1981

Chronz
06-18-2013, 09:36 PM
It was not a good time but with hindsight, I think we can agree that it was for the best. He got rid of Westhead and they brought in Riley and they took off from there. I also think we can agree that any chemistry issues would not be because Magic is a bad teammate. To a man everyone loved playing with him.
Actually Im pretty sure some players were complaining about his play that year, I remember a quote where he says something like "I dont know why they are complaining, I tried to give everyone touches". I know for a fact he and Nixon were butting heads and the team was put in an awkward position of restructuring an offense that had already won a championship. Magic was a great teammate for his career, it doesn't mean he was perfect from start to finish.



Magic was having a better year than Lebron was when he was 21 and Lebron was 22.
Sure, if you completely ignore intangibles+playoffs+durability.


Magics prime was from a rookie to the year he retired.
The argument being presented was that Magic was not in his prime. But he obviously wasn't entering his peak (his J was trash early on) run.



What do you mean heavy reliance? I would say that the Magic relied on Dwight just as much defensively and what they asked of him offensively as what Lebron was asked.
Doubtful, those Cavs were winless without Bron, their playoff performance without him on the court was truly abysmal. I dont think we've ever seen a team dropoff that badly in the playoffs without their star player yet still make the Finals. During the regular season they were literally winless without him whereas the Magic were a team that won an actual playoff game without Dwight because Gortat could come in an approximate his impact to some degree whereas the Cavs had no one to replace Bron.



Also the game that Dwight missed was against the Sixers who were 41-41 and had a .16 SRS that year. Thats not saying too much.
It says alot more than the Cavs were able to prove in many more tries in less pressure situations. Playoffs are where it matters most, that his team was even capable of defeating them while Brons couldnt is revealing.



Dwights next best playoff performer on that team was Marcin Gortat who had a 15.6 PER and .165 WS/48.
Maybe on a per minute rate he was but in terms of overall production it was definitely their 120M dollar man.


The next best player that got major minutes was Michael Pietrus who had a 14.0 PER and a .140 WS/48. Rashard Lewis could also be considered in the running for 2nd best player with 16.9 PER and .132 WS/48. That is pretty cruddy. That team would have no business getting to the finals if not for Dwight. And that crap team would not get to the finals if they were the Sacramento Magic.
Considered? How is not clear cut? Rashard was clearly their 2nd best, he was their only other All-Star and carried the biggest load as an individual scorer. His on/off court influence was also incredibly high, he was the preeminent stretch-4, his sacrifices are pretty much what made that team unique.



But Mutumbo was traded to the Sixers and only played 26 games with them. He was okay on defense in the playoffs with the Sixers. He had a 102 defensive rating but overall played pretty good. He had a 19.6 PER and a .184 WS/48. And it must have been a down year for 6th men because McKie was garbage. During the regular season he had a 15.1 PER and a WS/48 of .118. Awful! He did average 11 pts, 4 rebounds and 5 assist in 31 miutes of play which is okay I guess. But that all disapeared in the playoffs when he had a 15.4 PER and a WS/48 of .100 and shot 41% fg or .50 TS%. And they beat the previous years eastern conference champs as well.
The awards were crap, Mckies stats were inflated by him starting during a stretch of the season. He wasn't really the best 6th man. Whats your point tho? AI definitely didn't carry the same defensive load nor did he face a team that was comparable to his own the way the Cavs did vs Detroit.

Inferior production, inferior defense, inferior competition = no contest vs Brons run.


Lebron is the best player out of all those guys by a WIDE margin. I am not saying he is equal to them in any way. I am just saying that if we are going to give him a pass for getting swept by the Spurs and playing horrible while doing it, I say that we dont toot his horn too much for doing what numerous other stars have done the past 13 years. And that is come out on top in a conference that has been on the down turn for that entire time.
But you havent named numerous stars, none of the players you mentioned had the same combination of production, team reliance and competition on route to the Finals.

Sandman
06-18-2013, 10:12 PM
Gortat was the man for coming through in that game, but let's not forget that Boston was without KG entirely not just for one game.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 10:23 PM
Gortat was the man for coming through in that game, but let's not forget that Boston was without KG entirely not just for one game.

Just checked it was against Philly that he didn't play, in an elimination game no less. That was an impressive run by Dwight, but that team was underrated. For an example of a situation where the Magic relied on Dwight immensely, check his first round exit.

jerellh528
06-18-2013, 10:28 PM
Be quiet chronz. Dont compare a rookie, to a vteran in his prime and STILL choking as we speak.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 10:29 PM
Rookie?

And yes hes choking hard right now. Looking like prime Kareem Abdul-Jabbar out there.

jerellh528
06-18-2013, 10:31 PM
Rookie?

And yes hes choking hard right now. Looking like prime Kareem Abdul-Jabbar out there.

My bad your post was really long and i didn't read the whole thing. But i thought you were comparing magic's rookie year in the finals to prime lebron right now. If not i appologize.

Chronz
06-18-2013, 11:13 PM
Ahhh the TL;DR phenomena, I suppose thats to be expected when you write bricks of text. Wish I could articulate without dragging it out but its really only meant for the poster in the debate.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-19-2013, 06:11 PM
Actually Im pretty sure some players were complaining about his play that year, I remember a quote where he says something like "I dont know why they are complaining, I tried to give everyone touches". I know for a fact he and Nixon were butting heads and the team was put in an awkward position of restructuring an offense that had already won a championship. Magic was a great teammate for his career, it doesn't mean he was perfect from start to finish.

I can understand Norm not being happy about Magic coming back. He plays the same position.




Sure, if you completely ignore intangibles+playoffs+durability.
My point in showing that Magic was having a better year prior to the knee injury was because you said something about it being Magics fault he was not as good as Lebron at that age. That is not true. Of course I would not say that overall he had a better year but if he did not get injured its not a stretch to say a 21 year old Magic was better than a 22 year old Lebron.



The argument being presented was that Magic was not in his prime. But he obviously wasn't entering his peak (his J was trash early on) run.

You argued that Lebron was in his prime earlier than Magic. His J was trash as well during this "prime"




Doubtful, those Cavs were winless without Bron, their playoff performance without him on the court was truly abysmal. I dont think we've ever seen a team dropoff that badly in the playoffs without their star player yet still make the Finals. During the regular season they were literally winless without him whereas the Magic were a team that won an actual playoff game without Dwight because Gortat could come in an approximate his impact to some degree whereas the Cavs had no one to replace Bron.
The Heat went 6-0 without Lebron this year. I don't put much stock into such small sample size runs.





Maybe on a per minute rate he was but in terms of overall production it was definitely their 120M dollar man.
Lewis averaged 16.6 pts, 5.6 rebounds, and 2.6 assist on 44.8% shooting. per 36 min. with a 16.9 PER and .132 WS/48. That as your second option should not get you to the finals. That is my main point. These teams had no business getting to the finals if they did not play the sisters of mercy for the entire playoffs.




The awards were crap, Mckies stats were inflated by him starting during a stretch of the season. He wasn't really the best 6th man. Whats your point tho? AI definitely didn't carry the same defensive load nor did he face a team that was comparable to his own the way the Cavs did vs Detroit.

Inferior production, inferior defense, inferior competition = no contest vs Brons run.
Im not really comparing runs per se. I am just saying there is more than one way to skin a cat. Lebron didn't need to be that good. We seen far less players take less talented teams to the finals without all the bells and whistles. That is all I am trying to say. I don't care how he did it. He and his team showed they should not have been awarded with such a grand stage. They did not deserve it and they were not ready. Neither did the Pacers, Sixers, Nets twice, or the Magic.

Its like taking the D-League champ and putting them in the finals against the western champ. Is it going to be a fair fight? Why should the D-League champ get all this attention when there are 15 better teams in the west that would have put up more of a fight? That is how I and a lot of people view the Cavs and those other teams getting to the finals. Its kind of irrelevant.



But you havent named numerous stars, none of the players you mentioned had the same combination of production, team reliance and competition on route to the Finals.

Dwight played far better competition, had a worse supporting cast, oh and by the way, played much MUCH better than Lebron did.

http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=howardw01&y1=2009&p2=jamesle01&y2=2007


Dwight Howards best player was Rashard Lewis in 08/09. He was missing his all star point guard. Lebrons cast that he got to the finals had four players put up similar or better numbers than Lewis. They beat the more talented Celtics and Lebrons Cavs who had the third best player behind James and Dwight in Mo Williams.

Magic 09-CAV 07
Lewis vs Big Z= Big Z better playoffs
http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=lewisra02&y1=2009&p2=ilgauzy01&y2=2007

Lewis vs Drew Gooden= You could go either way but Gooden was the better defender.
http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=lewisra02&y1=2009&p2=goodedr01&y2=2007

Lewis vs Anderson V= Obviously Lewis was more important. But not using his counting numbers Lewis played pretty equal to a 3rd year big coming off the bench.
http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=lewisra02&y1=2009&p2=goodedr01&y2=2007

Lewis vs Boobie Gibson=Lewis played more but Gibson kicks his @$$ in the 20 minutes he got per game in 06/07.
http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/pcm_finder.cgi?request=1&sum=0&p1=lewisra02&y1=2009&p2=gibsoda01&y2=2007

With all things considered I would say that Dwight getting the Magic to the finals with players who did not play nearly as well as Lebrons cast did in 06/07(Who everyone degrades I might add) against the defending champs in the Celtics, and the 66-16 Cavs is far more impressive than the Cavs who beat teams well below them.

50-32 (7TH SRS) Cavs "competition" to get to the finals.
41-41 Wizards (15th SRS)
41-41 Nets (16th SRS)
53-29 Pistons (6th SRS)
The Cavs were 7th in SRS and they beat the 6th place SRS team in the Pistons. Not exactly David vs Goliath.

59-23 (4th SRS) Magic's competition to get to the finals.
41-41 Sixers (15th SRS)
62-20 Celtics (2nd SRS)
66-16 Cavs (1st SRS)


23 year old Dwight had a much more impressive finals run than 22 year old Lebron and he still got beat up by the Lakers because those east teams were a joke. Lebron gets no brownie points from me for doing something a lot of players did. Be the best player on a team full of misfits and get them to the finals out of the east like I have been saying this whole time.

ManRam
06-19-2013, 06:18 PM
Haven't read any posts here...


LeBron has frustrated me at times with his passive play, but I do think it has been overblown. He SHOULD have taken over more freuqently than he has, and he admittedly has struggled to score at the insanely efficient rate we're used to.

However, he's not playing a "Jordan role". He's basically been the PG out there constantly trying to run the offense and get people going. Should he have mixed in more scoring with that early one? Yeah, definitely. But I don't think it's because he's scared or anything. It's clear as day that when the game is on the line he's perfectly content with taking the shot and having the ball in his hands. Even with the TOs and missed shots late in the game, nothing about him looked scared. He just made mistakes.


LeBron has played worse than we're used to. There's no way around it. Luckily he's now on a team with a competent player or two and they can survive the rare occasion that he is off. He was never afforded that luxury in Cleveland, where he put up some of the best playoff numbers we've ever seen.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-19-2013, 06:37 PM
Haven't read any posts here...


LeBron has frustrated me at times with his passive play, but I do think it has been overblown. He SHOULD have taken over more freuqently than he has, and he admittedly has struggled to score at the insanely efficient rate we're used to.

However, he's not playing a "Jordan role". He's basically been the PG out there constantly trying to run the offense and get people going. Should he have mixed in more scoring with that early one? Yeah, definitely. But I don't think it's because he's scared or anything. It's clear as day that when the game is on the line he's perfectly content with taking the shot and having the ball in his hands. Even with the TOs and missed shots late in the game, nothing about him looked scared. He just made mistakes.


LeBron has played worse than we're used to. There's no way around it. Luckily he's now on a team with a competent player or two and they can survive the rare occasion that he is off. He was never afforded that luxury in Cleveland, where he put up some of the best playoff numbers we've ever seen.

He is definitely not afraid. He was begging for the ball back right after he missed that 3 and Bosh got the rebound. He has turned everything around after game 3. He has been great the past 3 games.

naps
06-19-2013, 06:37 PM
Since when having a finals series of 23.3/ 10.7/ 7.5/ 2.3/ 1 considered shrinking? He has had some bad games for sure but people making it like a disaster. He leads his team in every single category. And still he's shrinking? Well, then I guess deep down inside those people consider him the real GOAT.

DODGERS&LAKERS
06-19-2013, 06:40 PM
Since when having a finals series of 23.3/ 10.7/ 7.5/ 2.3/ 1 considered shrinking?

I guess when your Lebron James :shrug:

seikou8
06-19-2013, 06:49 PM
lebron is choking? only people saying that is lakers fans not surprising he has not played great but he has not choked dont be so silly