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Old 12-14-2018, 05:25 AM
 
5,567 posts, read 1,606,291 times
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https://warriorswire.usatoday.com/20...to-ever-do-it/
Quote:
Kevin Durant is one of the greatest scorers in NBA history and is playing alongside the greatest shooter in NBA history, but when you ask him who the best players ever are, Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan immediately come to mind. In an interview with The Athletic (subscription), Durant is almost uncomfortable with anyone who doesn’t realize how good Jordan and Bryant were in their primes.

“Kobe (Bryant), MJ (Michael Jordan) and Kyrie,” Durant says. “Just the way they move, I don’t understand why people don’t realize what they’re seeing in these three, especially Jordan and Kobe. Kyrie is younger than me, and that’s one of my best friends, so I watch his stuff. I get to play with Steph every day so I know his game inside and out. But watching Kobe and Mike, I’m like, ‘How do you not realize how good these dudes are?’ How do you not say they’re by far better than anybody who’s played the game? Just by the way they move, how fluid they are.”
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Old 12-14-2018, 05:46 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
3,509 posts, read 1,746,677 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MAGAalot View Post
Wow...that is really interesting that he didn't name Lebron as well. Although growing up in the 90s, I'd have to agree with him about MJ definitely and Kobe, especially when looking at pure skill. While Lebron is great, he is physically so much bigger than everyone he plays with and there were very few dominant 7-footers in the league while he's played. So he literally has just plowed his way to the basket without resistance most of his career. In fairness, his shooting has become much better over the years (as MJ's did).

In MJ's era, every team had a dominant, big 7 foot center, rough and tough PFs, and you could play zone and hand-check, and he was an artist out there. He completely changed the game. Kobe was similar to MJ but a level below his skill IMO, but he was a fierce competitor, and the closest thing to MJ. So I agree with Durant.

Just kind of surprised he didn't mention Lebron since they are close, but I did enjoy watching MJ and Kobe a lot more than Lebron because it seemed like they used a lot more skill beyond just physical dominance to do what they did.
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Old 12-14-2018, 05:55 AM
 
Location: Central New Jersey
2,518 posts, read 978,039 times
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Consider myself, and my generation, very lucky to have seen MJ play.
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Old 12-14-2018, 06:36 AM
Status: "What if there were no hypothetical questions?" (set 29 days ago)
 
Location: Sioux Falls, SD area
3,253 posts, read 4,697,044 times
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In my opinion, there are only 2 sports where you can point to one player as the best there's ever been. Michael Jordon in basketball and Wayne Gretzky in hockey.
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Old 12-14-2018, 06:47 AM
 
5,567 posts, read 1,606,291 times
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Durant has the best personality in the NBA, brilliant insight always.
And whether the media likes it or not, Durant's opinion will shape the way history remembers this era, while the media's opinions are forgettable fluff.
I mean the opinions of all the stars will shape history, but Durant is willing to commit fully and not hold back.
Most other stars are afraid to offend, so they don't really tell you much about the basketball world order.
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Old 12-14-2018, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Springfield, Ohio
12,246 posts, read 10,531,131 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmgg View Post
In my opinion, there are only 2 sports where you can point to one player as the best there's ever been. Michael Jordon in basketball and Wayne Gretzky in hockey.
I would submit Babe Ruth, but he’s so far back many will argue. I agree with you otherwise...
Before Mike, there was Wilt...after Mike, there is no one else.

For you guys wringing your hands on why he didn’t mention Lebron, he also didn’t mention his own teammate who is the centerpiece of one of the game’s greatest dynasties ever.
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Old 12-14-2018, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach
4,309 posts, read 2,924,186 times
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I'm about to go in a few different directions with this, but they are all connected...

First, Kevin Durant's opinion is revisionist, biased, and he's not influential enough to "shape the media narrative"...

Both Kobe and Jordan are in the conversation for greatest player ever---I don't know why he threw Kyrie in there, who isn't even in the convo for greatest player of his era...

The problem I have with this is that at the top, you have to split hairs, so it becomes uncomfortable to claim that any one player is "by far" greater than the other top tier guys. You can make an argument to support your guy that other guys would come up short in, likewise an argument can be given to highlight your guy's weaknesses and counterpoint that he isn't the GOAT because of said weaknesses...

I didn't see Jordan play, besides his Wizards years. I will say that as an ardent NBA follower, I appreciate history. Durant is a year older than me; at best, he may have been watching Jordan's last three years with the Bulls. It is entirely in the realm of possibility that he missed all of Jordan's Bulls career. I've had this conversation many, many times in real life, with guys in my age range (say guys between 26-32 years old right now), specifically when Michael Jordan comes up. Nobody our age range typically saw more than Jordan's last three years with Chicago; a lot of us missed his Bulls tenure; a select one or two guys were believable as having memory of MJ in 92-93. Not a single one of us saw even half of his career, let alone all of it....

I call guys out on this, because the problem with watching highlights and bloop reels is that history in general tends to be revisionist and shaped by the person(s) controlling the narrative. I'm passionate about this, pick any sport, politics, anything, this holds true. I don't give a **** how many games Durant has watched retroactively. You can't get a sense of the interwoven variables of a moment, without bias, by watching a fricking highlight reel. That doesn't give you the energy, the pressure, the momentum swings, the magnitude, anything with a clear mind, because you already know the result and the narratives/perception from the result before watching the highlights. But when you're experiencing moments in real time, you are there, it's entirely different....

Just a side example, kids who never will see Tom Brady play, but will know his legend, will see highlights of his Super Bowl 51 comeback already knowing Brady was regarded amongst the GOATs and pulled off the comeback. It isn't the same as actually watching Brady's career and watching Super Bowl 51 without knowing the outcome, or remembering Tom Brady before he was even considered in GOAT conversation. Those kids will not know that and therefore already have a predisposition...

I have no problem with guys who saw most and/or all of Jordan's career calling him the GOAT. He was the best player of his era and the best most people believed they saw until that point. I also have no problem with objective historians calling him the GOAT. Kevin Durant fits in neither category, big hole here...

I've talked to many older people who witnessed Jordan (including my 51 and 53 year old parents; my dad saw Jordan practice in person in 1984 when the Heels were upset by Arkansas, and followed his entire career from there). I know for some reason this is hard for people to accept, but there are people who watched MJ's entire career who don't anoint him as the GOAT, or at least not as the sole GOAT. Especially when you talk to guys 60+ who have working memories of Kareem in his prime and the other superstars before Jordan. I'm not saying this is a majority opinion, because it isn't, but it also isnt that rare, either. Jordan's era gave him that title around 90-91...

I think Jordan is one of the GOATs. He might be the best player ever. I don't buy that he is "by far" greater than the other three or four guys that get GOAT talk. At that level, a lot of factors are in play and you're splitting hairs...

And I saw Kobe play. He is no less than the #3 guy I've ever seen, but he ain't #1. And I saw his whole career besides his first two years. He isnt the best player I've ever seen, and there are two guys EXTREMELY debatable in his era as having been better, so definitely not "by far" one of the best players I ever saw...

KD is my age. We were raised in the Kobe era and saw him come of age. We, including myself probably, have a romanticized impression of Kobe that most guys over 40 don't have, and that no one under 20 will have. But we grew up in his time, we all idolized Kobe. In '99 when I started watching the NBA, it was Kobe and the Lakers, but specifically Kobe and his SI posters, that made a kid from Sacramento fall in love with the NBA (and at the time, the Lakers were my first rooting interest). I wanted an afro like him, I copied his moves on the court, and year by year virtually everyone I grew up with did the same. We adored Kobe and mimicked everything about him, we defended him staunchly in the Shaq beef and rape case. That's who we were raised with...

So KD's comments are not relevant to me. He is competing against LeBron's legacy in real time. Nobody runs around putting him in GOAT talk and it's obvious he's coordinating shots at LeBron. He'll get his day. In the meantime, I enjoy watching KD ball, he's one of the best I've seen. He lacks objectivity so the best thing his sensitive ass can do is worry about his own legacy and play ball...
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Old 12-14-2018, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Springfield, Ohio
12,246 posts, read 10,531,131 times
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It’s not that serious. Lebron gave an interview a couple years back where he listed Jordan, Magic, Bird & Oscar as the GOATs. No mention of any other active player. The only old head who caught feelings was Bill Russell, not Kareem or anyone since.
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Old 12-14-2018, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Virginia Beach
4,309 posts, read 2,924,186 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Natural510 View Post
It’s not that serious. Lebron gave an interview a couple years back where he listed Jordan, Magic, Bird & Oscar as the GOATs. No mention of any other active player. The only old head who caught feelings was Bill Russell, not Kareem or anyone since.
That's kinda my point, though. It ain't that serious, but Durant went out of his way to create this dialogue. It's all good with me, but since it is an active talking point this week, Durant's opinion on Kobe is colored by the era he grew up in, and his opinion of Jordan is colored by the era before his that gave him his predisposition, because he definitely didn't watch Jordan's career outside of potentially a season or two, much less the guys before Jordan...
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Old 12-14-2018, 05:57 PM
Status: "but it depends on what the definition of "is" is." (set 27 days ago)
 
Location: Clyde Hill, WA
3,854 posts, read 685,553 times
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I'd say Bill Russell and it's not even close. Russell played 13 seasons, and won titles 11 of those seasons. The Celtics of that era won their first title his rookie year, and their last title the year he retired. Chamberlain of course had more talent, but Russell used Jedi mind tricks to beat him every time.

I wonder where Stephen Curry will wind up on the all-time list? He is already the greatest 3 point guy in history, in an era where everything revolves around the trey. He's 30 years old, and has three titles so far. It's not inconceivable that he could rack up another 4 if they can keep Curry/Durant/Thompson together. That would take him past Jordan's total of 6 titles.
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