Does Lebron Put Up Better Stats Then Jordan Did?

Scottie Pippen was just recently reported saying that he thinks Lebron James is “statistically” a better basketball player then Pippen’s long time teammate, the great Michael Jordan was. Obviously both players are a few of the greatest ever to play the sport, with most people regarding Jordan as the greatest basketball player ever, so this is quite a bold statement by Pippen. But does Scottie Pippen have a valid point? Let’s check out Lebron and Jordan’s stats throughout there career to see if what Pippen stated really is not so outlandish.

Points Per Game

Michael Jordan retired for the third and final time from basketball after the 2002-2003 NBA season, finishing his illustrious career with the Washington Wizards.  Michael left the NBA with averaging a staggering total of 30.1 PPG through 15 NBA seasons. Lebron James is currently in his 15th season and for his career is averaging 27.2 PPG, proving he is also one of the greatest basketball scorers the world has ever seen. Michael Jordan scored between 40 and 49 points in an NBA contest a total of 172 times, while scoring 50 to 59 points in a total of 34 basketball contest’s, these statistics show how extraordinary of a scorer Michael Jordan was. Lebron James has scored between 40 to 49 points in 64 NBA games, while scoring between 50 to 59 points in a game 11 times. Lebron also has more 50 point games (11 of them) then games where he failed to score in double digits (only 8 of them). Both these players are a few of the greatest scorers in the history of basketball and there scoring accomplishments cannot be overlooked, but Michael undeniable scoring prowess is something basketball has not seen since he retired.

Better Scorer: Michael Jordan

Assists Per Game

Michael Jordan finished his NBA career averaging 5.3 assists per game, which is quite a lot for a shooting guard, especially a shooting guard  that shot the ball as much as Michael did. Lebron James currently in his career is averaging an astonishing 7.1 assists per game. Lebron’s passing ability is so great that on certain occasions this NBA season the Cavaliers have started Lebron at point guard, the position that usually has the teams best passer. Lebron James has averaged over eight assists for a season twice in his career, and this season is currently averaging a career high 9.1 assists per game. Michael averaged eight assists one season during his illustrious career, but was never able to average over seven assists again in an NBA season. Both players can defiantly pass the rock, but this category has gotta go to LBJ.

Better Passer: Lebron James

Rebounds Per Game

Michael and Lebron are both elite re bounders at their positions. Michael finished his career averaging 6.2 rebounds per game, while Lebron for his career currently averages 7.3 rebounds per game. Michael Jordan averaged a career high in rebounds during the 1988-1989 NBA campaign, in which he grabbed eight rebounds a game. Lebron averaged a career best 8.6 rebounds per game during the 2016-2017 NBA season. Michael averaged over sic rebounds a a game in nine of his fifteen active NBA seasons, while Lebron has averaged at least 6 rebounds per game every season except for his rookie year. Although Lebron has averaged more rebounds per season then Jordan did, it must also be taken into account that Lebron in 6″8 and Michael is 6″6. Also, Lebron plays mostly at the small forward position which is prone to getting more rebounds then the position MJ played, shooting guard. Despite Lebron probably getting more chances to grab rebounds then Jordan did, it cannot be overlooked that Lebron has averaged at least six rebounds a game since the 2004-2005 NBA season, an astonishing feat for a small forward.

Better Rebounder: Lebron James (barely)

Steals Per Game

Both of these basketball legends are and were outstanding on the defensive end of  the court, but this category is not as close at the previous ones. Michael averaged 2.3 steals per game over his career, while Lebron has averaged 1.6 over his career. Jordan in the 1987-1988 season averaged an astounding 3.2 steals per game, and he only averaged under 2 steals a game in four of his fifteen NBA seasons. Lebron, while he is great at the defensive end of the floor, only averaged over 2 steals a game in one of his 14 plus seasons as an NBA player.

Better At Steals: Michael Jordan

Triple Doubles

Both of these players could do it all at both ends of the floor on any given night, but which superstar did it more often? Michael for his career finished with 28 career triple doubles, while Lebron currently has 46 of them in his career. This is due to the fact that Jordan would focus more on scoring the ball, while Lebron does have superstar scoring ability, he looks to pass and rebound more then most players at his position, and what’s amazing is that he has the physical ability to do so. Again, both players could do it all, but Lebron currently having 18 more triple doubles then Jordan ever did is nothing short of amazing.

Better at posting a Triple Double: Lebron James

Final Decision

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Personally, I would feel uncomfortable saying that Lebron is a greater player then MJ, but this discussion has been going on for years and without a doubt will continue for years to come. I will say that Lebrons ability to dominate in every aspect of the sport is probably unparallel compared to anyone before him or anyone currently in the NBA, but that does not necessarily make his the greatest ever. You cannot take away all the Championships and other basketball awards MJ won during his superb career, which is something Lebron is still trying to catch MJ on while playing out potentially the latter years of his career. So who is the greatest? at the end of the day, It depends who you ask.

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