We have all heard the LeBron James quote saying that his motivation going forward is chasing the ghost of Michael Jordan, but what does that look like? How does James chip away the legacy of the Greatest Of All-Time?
At this point in his career, it may be too late for James to capture 7 or even 6 rings.
Think about it, over the span of the next two years the Timberwolves and Lakers young talent will begin to flourish and rise to power in the league, and the Celtics will most likely acquire a superstar and take the next step with their young core to becoming a serious contender. Of course, I can't forget Golden State Warriors with Stephen Curry and Kevin Durant, and what if Blake Griffin decides to sign with Oklahoma City Thunder? One more contender and one more problem for King James.
LeBron' window to win 3 more rings is closing quickly and in my opinion, he may only have one or two more rings left in him. So where does he go from here? In this article, we will discuss how the King can become the greatest of all time despite the fact that he may not be able to catch up in rings.
NBA All-Time Points Leaders
The first way that LeBron can chip away at the Immense legacy of Jordan is to close in on the career statistics of Jordan. James is on pace to break the leagues all-time scoring record, Jordan currently sits 4th on the all-time scorers list, if LeBron can pass Jordan it will play a massive role in pushing his legacy ahead of Jordan’s.
Going along with that, for the most part, James is considered a better all-around player than Jordan, if he is able to surpass Jordan in all-time scoring it will go a long way towards solidifying his legacy as the greatest. Also, for Jordan’s career he averaged 30.1 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 5.3 assists while LeBron currently sits at 27.2 PPG, 7.2 RPG, and 6.9 APG, it would go a long way for LeBron if he could pull a little further ahead of Jordan in the assists per game category.
NBA MVP Award Winners
The next way that LeBron can pull ahead of Jordan in this changing NBA is by collecting as many personal accolades as possible over the next several years. LeBron is currently one NBA MVP behind Jordan for his career, the 2016-2017 season has set the stage for the King to even it up with his Airness by winning his 5th MVP.
Think about it, the 2 biggest contenders for the award over the last several years have joined forces in Golden State leaving the door wide open for a new MVP, or perhaps an old one returning to his glory to take home his 5th MVP award. This is King James’ year to even up his Most Valuable Player awards with Jordan.
NBA Defensive Player Of The Year
Another accolade that LeBron needs to capture is the league’s Defensive Player of the Year, let’s be honest, there have been several seasons in which LeBron is the rightful owner or DPOY but the league’s voters have never seen it that way, LeBron must close the defensive gap between himself and Jordan and he must do it quickly. This is a major key in LeBron achieving GOAT status.
Three Olympic Gold Medals
Lastly is for LeBron to be the Olympian and American hero one last time. LeBron has two gold medals (like Jordan), but he can win another gold medal if he decides to play in Tokio.
LeBron could also become all-time leading scorer in U.S. Olympic Basketball History.
I mean, can you see the headlines now, “LeBron recaptures number 1 in Olympic scoring, leads a team to his third gold medal.”. LeBron 2020 Olympics could potentially be the icing on the cake that is his legacy, and he could fully surpass Michael Jordan as the GOAT.
Surpassing the seemingly insurmountable legacy of Jordan will not be an easy task for anyone, however, if anyone can do it it’s James. The coming years will show if James has what it takes to become the greatest player to ever step on the Hardwood.
LeBron is definitely willing to work for it as we are reminded when he said, “In Northeast Ohio, nothing is given , everything is earned."