Skip to main content

Karl Malone shares if he would have rather played with LeBron James or Michael Jordan

MJ or LeBron?
Michael Jordan, Karl Malone and LeBron James

Michael Jordan, Karl Malone and LeBron James

The GOAT debate between Michael Jordan and LeBron James might be a fiery dispute that often results in MJ's favor, but when you are talking about who you would rather have on your team, the conversation gets a bit more interesting.

Two different mindsets

Despite being arguably two of the greatest basketball players to ever play, Jordan and LeBron have completely different mindsets when it comes to playing the game and leading their team.

Michael was always more of a scorer and individual than a distributor, averaging 30.1 ppg and 5.3 apg for his career. Although he had some good seasons when it came to passing the ball, especially in his later years, Michael was always looking for his shot first, being the unquestioned alpha.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

LeBron, on the other side, is the complete opposite, regarded as one of the best passers in NBA history. Basically, a point guard in a 6'8'',250 lbs body, James used his court vision to separate himself from the rest. LeBron is averaging 7.4 apg for his career, even leading the NBA in assists just two years ago with 10.2 per game.

LeBron himself views his game in that manner, always trying to make his teammates better and stuff the stat sheet in various ways. That's why his leadership style maybe is a bit easier to play with, but it lacks that killer mentality and toughness MJ imposed on his guys.

You could argue Jordan's way brings you more rings, but LeBron makes it more fun to play. That's why Dan Patrick once asked Karl Malone, who of these two greats would be a better teammate for him:

"LeBron James. Because he plays like me. And I'll tell you what. We don't start playing until we get hit. So imma say, LeBron James. Let the debate begin, and I don't give a rat's ass if they do. I'm just telling you who I would like. That's all!"

Karl Malone, The Dan Patrick Show

Did the "Mailman" go with LeBron solely because Jordan beat him in back-to-back Finals, stripping him away from the best chance to become a champion, or does he believe LeBron would utilize him better is up for debate. But you can definitely convince me in either one of those solutions, if not both. It's definitely a great question that is more debatable than the GOAT talk.

Tony Parker just wanted to make it to the NBA, and ended up becoming a legend in the process

Tony Parker shares what made it so hard to make it in the NBA as a European point guard back in the day

Tony Parker accomplished so much throughout his illustrious career, but his only goal initially was just to make it in the NBA

John Salley compares Luka Doncic to Larry Bird

John Salley says he would fear Luka Doncic the same way he feared Larry Bird

It might be too early to draw parallels between Larry Bird and Luka Doncic. But according to John Salley, both possess the same fear factor on the court.


Patrick Beverly disrespects the 2020 Lakers championship: "The Bubble Championship"

LeBron might think that was one of the hardest championships to win in NBA history, but Pat Bev is not having it!

Is it time for Chris Paul to retire?

Is it time for Chris Paul to retire?

This Playoff run exposed Chris Paul’s age more than ever. Gone are the days when he had all energy, pop, and even to an extent, durability to stay on the court.

Isiah Thomas criticism of Chris Paul still stands

Isiah Thomas’ past criticisms of Chris Paul still rings true: "He has to push past safe"

Isiah Thomas claimed Chris Paul was playing too safe to maintain his good stats. The Hall of Famer wanted CP3 to take some risks to win games.


Matt Barnes calls Patrick Beverly a clown for the Chris Paul slander: "You're not that guy"

Barnes went in on Pat Bev: "Chris Paul played terrible this series and his numbers are still better than your career numbers have ever been."

Patrick Beverley wouldn't mind joining LeBron James and the Lakers

Patrick Beverley on playing with the Los Angeles Lakers if he had the chance: “I wouldn’t even hesitate”

Patrick Beverley admitted that there's nothing like playing for the Lakers franchise

JJ Redick explains why Eric Gordon could've helped Phoenix Suns in the playoffs

JJ Redick explains why Eric Gordon could've helped Phoenix Suns in the playoffs

The Phoenix Suns fans wanted Eric Gordon but the front office panned their wishes.