Former NBA player Rick Mahorn came out saying there is no such thing as the best player in league history and that we can only judge who are the best teams in NBA history.
There is no such thing as the greatest player
The GOAT debate is one of the heated topics for discussion among NBA fans and analysts today, and it always brings a lot of controversies. Everyone has their own opinion on who the best player is in NBA history, and those usually depend on personal preferences for specific players. Names like Jordan, Kobe, LeBron, and Kareem, to a certain degree, typically show up in these debates, but according to former NBA player Rick Mahorn, there is no such a thing as the GOAT.
In a recent interview, Mahorn talked about how he doesn't believe there is one single greatest player in NBA history because basketball is a team sport. He argues that if you are going to discuss those things, you can debate which is the most outstanding team in NBA history instead.
"I really don't believe in the greatest player because you can't have the greatest player without four other guys. That is just life because we are not boxers, we are not tennis players. It's going to be five guys, it's going to be a team. How do you separate it I just don't know."
Debate for the best team in NBA history
Mahorn's approach and thinking about this topic are different from what many fans and analysts have, but it's a valid one. Basketball is a team sport, and we've seen numerous times that great individuals never win titles by themselves. They need to be surrounded by other great players that will help them out along the way because the reality is nobody can do it by themselves no matter how good they are individually. On top of that, it's hard to measure players' greatness because they played in different eras under different rules and narratives.
Mahorn also made a great point saying these things are more straightforward in individual sports like tennis, where it's a 1-on-1 matchup between two athletes. In that case, maybe it's more sensible to talk about the greatest teams in NBA history instead of the best players. However, it's hard to imagine the media and the fans not pushing that narrative anymore because it sparks a lot of debate, and everyone has their reasoning why a specific player is worthy of having the GOAT title.