Blog Entry

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Posted on: June 17, 2011 3:47 pm
Edited on: June 17, 2011 4:18 pm
Posted by Royce Young

LeBron James is 26 years old. He's got at least five to seven more years of basketball in his prime which means he has quite a bit of time to re-write all this legacy talk that's dominated headlines over the past week.

So he lost in the NBA Finals. For a second time. Doesn't mean he's got to retire a loser forever now.

Nobody keeps perspective quite like the former all-time greats. They understand what it means to be a champion and the road it takes to get there. Isiah Thomas came to LeBron's defense saying James is just going through things that all stars go through. And Larry Bird -- who when The Basketball Jesus speaks, you listen -- said not to worry too much about LeBron because his time will come. Via Sports Radio Interviews, Bird was asked if he feels bad for LeBron because of all the recent criticism:
“He brought a lot of it on himself, but here’s what I feel about LeBron: he’s as good as anyone that’s ever played this game. I think he’s going to win a lot of titles; I think he’s going to continue to get better. To me, he’s an amazing athlete, he’s never been hurt, he’s got the body of a football player and he’s got skill. I just think he’s off the charts good.

And I think his time is going to come. I think they did a remarkable job in Miami this year bringing that team together and getting where they got. They’ll get better next year. Their time is going to come if he stays healthy, and he’s going to have a lot of success in this league and win championships.”
People like me can say that stuff like that over and over, but when Larry Legend says it, it makes a lot more impact. LeBron's time will come. He's too good for it not to.

Bird sort of took the Scottie Pippen side of things saying LeBron is "as good as anyone that's played this game." And in terms of pure talent, I don't think you can really disagree. But LeBron's not the total package yet. He's got work to do and rings to win before anyone is willing to place him anywhere near an all-timers list.

But there's a lot of time left and a lot of chapters left to be written in the LeBron Legacy. I wouldn't write him off quite yet.
Category: NBA

Since: May 2, 2010
Posted on: June 18, 2011 8:55 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

you didnt have internet and the mass media when all them guys played so you dont know how they worried about their legacy and I dont hear LeBron talking about his legacy

When LeBron talks about winning 7 championships before he set foot on Miami's court, that was over the top arrogance. How about just go out and let your play do the talking?

Since: Oct 15, 2006
Posted on: June 18, 2011 8:54 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

People need to throw age out of the window! Lebron is 26 and jordan was 28...blah blah balh! Jordan went to college so he won his first Championship in 6 years...Lebron has been in the leage for 8 years so Lebron had a 2 year head start! 
Coming rightout of highschool I believe college is more beneficial to get ready for the NBA, and if you minus Lebrons 2 extra years in the NBA to Jordans three season as a Tar Heel, Jordan has a 1 year head start.  You can feel differently all you want, but thats my feeling on it.  Im not comparing the two though, and I dont understand why so many do.  Only thing I pointed out is Jordan did not start winning rings till he was 28 years old.  Regardless how long Lebron has been in the NBA he has yet to reach that age.  Nothing to dispute there.

Since: Jun 21, 2007
Posted on: June 18, 2011 7:56 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Well said.

Lebron has the physical attributes thate very few players have ever had. His heart is another matter though.  

Since: Mar 26, 2007
Posted on: June 18, 2011 7:37 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

LeBron is 6'9 built like Karl Malone yet has no post up game.  Dudes unwillingly to change.  And until he realizes he has to get better to win the championship he never will.  Eat that humble pie. Become a better FT shooter, stop being a shrinking violet in the 4th quarter, get a post up game, go after it with intensity the whole game like Jordan did.  Do these things LeBron & you will win.  Fail to change and you will never win.

Jordan was a in your face intense as heck defender.  Intense intense intense. Jordan was running through screen after screen.  Sprinting!  Freakin on the tips of his toes intense!  Jordan sweatin all over the place, talkin', slammin' everything.  Damn LeBron is NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING like that.  LeBron looks like he is on Ritalin out there. Letting the game come to him instead of taking to the game.    Jordan earned EVERYTHING. LeBron looks like he think it is owed to him. I can't stand punks like that!  And if he doesn't change, if he doesn't get off his "I am King James" high horse, he will be nothing.

Seven years in....  He is nothing. 

Since: Apr 20, 2009
Posted on: June 18, 2011 6:42 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

I think that too many people listen to the four letter network and draw conclusions from what is reported on that network. They have already discounted the Dallas victory as Miami's failure because they were in bed and deep under covers with James.  Almost all of their "experts" picked the Heat, and when they did not win, they could not admit they were wrong. LeBron is still a child, and he acts like one. He came right out of high school and was proclaimed by the media as great, but when he acts like what he is (a child) the media cuts him down. Magic, Bird, Jordan, etc attended college and were able to reach a certain level of maturity before entering the NBA. Kobe had to sit behind Van Exel and Jones when he came into the NBA. Because of the four letter network, people seem to have the opinion that Jordan won all alone. He did not. At the time of the first 3 titles in chicago, Horace Grant was considered as one of, if not the best power forward in the league. Pippen was hands down the best wing in the league. Pippen handled the ball, played lock down defense, and was a good rebounder. Bill Cartwright played some of the best low post defense on centers in the NBA after being an offensive player with the Knicks.  With the second "3 peat", Jordan played with the best rebounder in the league in Rodman, Pippen still at his side, and big men who could shoot from the perimeter (Longley, etc) which pulls the other teams big men away from the basket. What LeBron does not seem to have is that "killer instinct" that Jordan, Magic, Bird, Thomas, and Kobe all have. However, not all superstars past and present like Karl Malone had it either. The four letter acts like the NBA started when they hit the airwaves, and because they do not have any competition anymore, they can shape the debate anyway they like. One player does not win the NBA title alone. When the four letter tells you that Wade won in 2006 alone, remember that Shaq still commanded double teams which gave Wade a chance to operate.

Since: May 5, 2011
Posted on: June 18, 2011 6:14 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

No doubt he has great skills and makes great highlight reels.  Not to mention his remarkable efforts in The Decision.  One of the best ever?  Not yet.  Top 25 with the skills and opportunity to be one of the best ever?  Yes.  Only time will tell, but I think everyone needs to settle down on these claims.  Is he even the best player on his own team??? I would say no. 

Since: Feb 14, 2008
Posted on: June 18, 2011 5:42 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Age is only a number, when you are as young and talented as Lebron, patience and being more of a team player will take him where the greats have been.  Personally, I think that Lebron will end up with MJ, Magic, Bird and the likes.  This is providing he grow up, be less self centered, more of a team player and less about his stats.  If and when he takes care of those negatives, he will definitely be one of the greats.  As for topping MJ as the BEST, that won't happen, ever!  Move on Lebron, you'll be fine next year.  As a matter of fact, the Lakers has been the team that I've rooted for for over 20 years.  Next year I will be a Heat fan because I really want you to suceed!!! 

Since: Mar 8, 2008
Posted on: June 18, 2011 5:28 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Of course Bird is right. LeBron is often immature and selfish, but his ability is amazing. He's still a young player...just approaching his prime years. Perceptions change. Don't forget, Dirk was often called "soft" and was accused of "fading in the clutch" before this year's playoffs. Especially when he was LeBron's age, there was one perception. Now there is a different one: he's "great" and "one of the best of all-time". LeBron has time to rewrite his legacy. Fans are have very short memories.     

Since: Jul 17, 2008
Posted on: June 18, 2011 5:00 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Im with Larry. The truth has spoken. Lebron is as good as anyone that has ever played in the NBA. His size and athletic ability dwarfs players in the past. I still believe MJ was the best to ever play. His consistent jumper(shooter)  is what makes him better than Lebron. James if he gets a championship or 2 could be in the end a close second.

And if anyone brings up Wilt as the best im going to puke.  That argument is dead

Since: Oct 1, 2006
Posted on: June 18, 2011 4:52 pm

Larry Bird says LeBron is as good as anyone ever

Pippen said the same thing Bird said.  Pippen said "MIGHT be the best".  Understand the word "might".  That isn't definative that he is the best "MIGHT".  Bird says as good as anyone that has ever played the game.  Neither one goes so far as to say the best but two of the all-time top 50 players have given Lebron credit which he does deserve but he still has a lot of years and a long way to go before he is considered "the best".  Lebron still has a good ten years left in his game. 

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