Giannis Antetokounmpo was never afraid to express his respect for other great NBA players. For the most part, he always had a tremendous appreciation for LeBron James and his legacy. They both teamed up at the All-Star Game, and seeing them playing on the same team was scary when you consider they are two of the top 7 players in the NBA right now. Even though Giannis is having another remarkable season from an individual standpoint, he still considers LeBron to be the best player in the NBA at the moment.
Giannis argues that if you are a champion, you deserve to be in the discussion for the best player in the NBA, and whether you like LeBron or not, you have to admit he still incredibly dominant despite turning 36 years old. Being the best scorer or an MVP doesn’t mean much if you don’t win a championship, and that is something LeBron did last season with the Lakers, which verified his legacy as one of the greatest players in NBA history.
“For sure, I think he’s one of the best players in the league. For sure. There’s no doubt. He’s a champion. And as long as you’re the champion, you’re the best player in the league. I don’t care who’s the MVP, I don’t care who’s the leading scorer in the NBA. If you’re the champion on the best team, I think you’re the best player in the league, the best player in the world.Giannis Antetokounmpo, via USA Today
Many fans dislike LeBron for various reasons, and everyone has different views on where he belongs on the list of the best players in NBA history. For Giannis, when it comes to the debate between LeBron and Jordan, he says half of the people will go with Jordan, and the other half would pick LeBron. That type of never-ending debate brings a lot of attention, but for Giannis, it doesn’t matter at the end of the day because the proof of greatness is when you are mentioned in the same breath as Michael Jordan.
“There’s going to be other opinions out there. Some people are going to say he’s not the best player in the world, and some people are going to say somebody else. It’s the same thing with the debate ‘who is the best, Jordan or LeBron?’ There’s going to be 50% of people that are going to say Jordan, 50% of people are going to say LeBron. It doesn’t really matter because at the end of the day, just being in that conversation, you’re the one, you know?”Giannis Antetokounmpo, via USA Today
Even though the Lakers are currently third in a very competitive western conference, they were struggling lately mostly because of Anthony Davis’s absence from the team due to injury. On the other hand, LeBron is playing heavy minutes and being incredibly effective when you take into account he is 36. He is currently averaging 26 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 assists per game and is one of the leading candidates for the MVP award this season. Just like Giannis said, whether you like him or not, you can’t deny the fact LeBron is still one of the greatest players in the NBA. Younger players like Giannis look up to him in every way they can because of his ability to dominate the game from almost every aspect.
— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) March 7, 2021