Tuesday 01st December 2015,
The Hoop Doctors

The Nextology of Michael Jordan: Part VIII – Kobe Bryant

The Hoop Doctors love Michael Jordan. That’s got to be pretty obvious to everyone by now. So in honor of Michael, and to discourage the media from pretending to be clairvoyant in the future when it comes to comparing young ballers to the greatest to ever play, every week I will be shining a little light on each of the media’s shortcomings when it has come to these ridiculous and presumptuous predictions.

These posts are not intended to disrespect any of the players compared to Jordan in any way. They all had excellent careers and were or are tremendous basketball players. It is not your fault someone with very little knowledge of the game or even the skill to play this game decided to call you the “Next Jordan”. Part VIII to my series called “The Nextology of Michael Jordan” will be looking at Kobe “Black Mamba” Bryant:

But to take a good look at how different their careers were, I think you always have to start off by taking a birds eye view of the comparison by checking out their individual career stats. Here is the statistical comparison below in this chart:

K.B. Stats: 25.2 ppg 5.3 rpg 4.6 apg 1.5 spg 0.5 bpg .455 FG% .340 3P% .840 FT%
M.J. Stats: 30.1 ppg 6.2 rpg 5.3 apg 2.4 spg 0.8 bpg .497 FG% .327 3P% .835 FT%

From the feedback we have received thus far on this series it seems everyone reading is anxiously awaiting our final installment, the comparison to Kobe Bryant. We can make this as simple or as complicated as we want. The simple question is ‘who would win in a game of one-on-one between Michael and Kobe? Curiously, this exact question was asked recently of Jordan at a development camp he runs. This link has his answer…..I tend not to argue with the greatest ever, so i’ll take that as fact. Let’s move on to the more complicated version then, shall we?


When looking at the on-court statistical comparison between the two, it is quite simply not even a contest. Quite a few Kobe fans (many of which were not old enough to watch and appreciate Jordan in his prime), will try and tell you that the statistics are an unfair comparison since Kobe came into the NBA straight out of high school and in his first couple of years did not receive the same playing time as Michael did. While I will grant them that fact, it must be duly noted that Kobe has been in the league for 13 years now, and has only had 3 seasons where he averaged over 30 points per game. Jordan on the other hand had 8 of his first 13 seasons averaging over 30 points per game. Let’s forget point scoring for a minute though, because regardless of how it plays out, Michael and Kobe are both prolific scorers. Kobe has proven that fact by scoring 81 points in one contest against the Toronto Raptors in January of 2006. In that same season of 2005-06 Kobe also put up huge scoring numbers of 35.4 ppg on the year, which was quite close close to Jordan’s phenomenal 37.1 ppg in 1986-87.

So where else is Kobe trailing Michael statistically? A lot of fans would probably key in on the fact that Michael Jordan was a better passer and outperformed Kobe quite a bit in the assists column, or they might notice that Jordan had a better field goal percentage therefore saying he was a better scorer. But where I would like to focus is on the defensive end. Kobe is a great defender, and he proved as much the last two summer’s playing for Team USA often taking it upon himself to shut down the opposing countries biggest scorers. But has it translated for Kobe to his defensive play in the NBA? We all know Michael Jordan was a 9 time NBA All-defensive First Team selection and in 1988 was voted in as Defensive Player of the Year, and for good reason. Kobe has great numbers defensively, but if you look at how Kobe trails Michael significantly in defensive rebounding, steals, and blocks you start to get a flavor for the intensity Jordan brought to both ends of the floor. Kobe is a good defender, but he definitely is a much better offensive player, and on some nights leaves nothing to be desired on the defensive end. Michael Jordan was probably one of the most offensively and defensively balanced players to ever play the game. He rarely, if ever, took a night of defensively.


One of The Hoop Doctors readers last week when we did the Dwyane Wade comparison was kind enough to point out that of all the players compared to Jordan in this series, Dwayne Wade was the only player who has won an NBA Finals MVP Award. I would like to point out that Jordan has 6 of them, but regardless the point was well taken. Performing on the NBA’s greatest stage, the NBA Finals, and winning an award recognizing your achievement towards your contribution to your team’s success is the ultimate praise given out by the league. So to be clear, Kobe Bryant has three NBA Championships but due to the fact he played alongside the Diesel, Shaquille O’Neal, he doesn’t have any NBA Finals MVP awards as Shaq back then was clearly the dominant force driving the Lakers success. Kobe does however have a long list of awards and achievements during his career worth noting. Here is a comparison of the two player’s accolades:

Awards Bryant Jordan
Championships 3 6
MVP 1 5
Finals MVP 0 6
Defensive Player 0 1
Rookie of Year 0 1
All-star 11 14
Scoring Title 2 10
All-NBA First Team 6 10
All-Defensive First 6 9
All-star MVP 3 3
Slam Dunk Title 1 2

I realize that Kobe’s career is far from over, but after 13 seasons in the league I think the above table of awards, really speaks for itself when you are looking to compare Kobe Bryant to Michael Jordan. Kobe is a great player with many accolades, however Michael Jordan is in a whole other universe, as the greatest player to ever play this game.


Lately there has been a lot of talk about how Kobe Bryant is the only player in the game today that has the same level of fierce competitiveness that Michael Jordan had. You know that feeling you got watching Michael play that told you he hated to lose more than anything in the world, and would do whatever it took to make sure he was a winner. Although Kobe early in his career was often labeled as selfish and only concerned with his own personal glory, over the years he has taken some huge strides towards involving teammates, and putting the team winning games before his own personal success. But regardless of how fierce a competitor Kobe is, I can’t help but think about how he ran Phil Jackson and Shaquille O’Neal out of LA a few years ago. At the time Phil was still the best Coach in the league, and Shaq was still the most dominant center and arguably the most dominant player in the league. When you really get down to comparing Kobe’s competitive edge with that of Michael Jordan you have to wonder, would MJ have ever turned away Phil Jackson and Shaquille O’Neal, regardless of his off-the-court relationships with the two? I highly doubt it. Michael loved to win too much.

The other comparison I often hear with Kobe Bryant in the last two seasons since L.A.’s rejuvenation, is that Kobe makes his team better like Michael Jordan. As far as intangibles go, I think this is a ridiculous statement. Michael Jordan in his prime was a leader that players wanted to follow. He was a guy that lead by example and his teammates followed. He was a player that did make everyone around him better, regardless of the quality of his supporting cast. When Michael did have a good supporting cast they set the record for most wins by any team ever in an NBA season at 72 wins. Kobe on the other hand is more often than not criticized by teammates after they leave LA about being a tough teammate to play with, both on and off the court. People often neglect the fact that when crunching the numbers throughout Kobe’s career the Lakers lowest winning percentages have come when Kobe averages more than 30 points a game.

So that is it for the series “The Nextology of Michael Jordan”……for now…..Why? Because the media has proven one thing over the years…although I cringe at the thought of another player being compared to Michael Jordan in the future by the media, it is bound to happen. I just hope to hell they at least wait until his career is over and done with before they pull out their lab coats and start dissecting his performances.

Tell us your thoughts below on Kobe Bryant being called ‘The Next Jordan’…..Thanks for tuning in….

Links to Other ‘Nextology’ Posts:

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  • http://www.blazeoflove.com kellex

    Again, the actual statline for Jordan is mind-boggling. We all know that Kobe is probably as close as anyone will ever come to being the next Jordan, but he still doesn’t even come that close.

    The guy even mimicked his damn game after MJ…close, but not quite Kobeeeeeeee.

  • Nash is God

    great series Anklesnap! This one was the best by far. I like the award comparison.

  • Kevin

    How about comparing MJ to King James. I think going forward he’ll be a much better comparison to MJ than Kobe

    • Iriani2

      Lebron James will NEVER be the player Kobe or Michael Jordan will EVER be ok? Im an NBA expert and LJ is a great player dont get me wrong, but he is the biggest CHOKER of all time. If LeBrons team is down by 1 point and he is shooting free-throws to tie it up or take the lead I guarentee you that he will miss both. Kobe would never ever miss those 2 shots, it wouldnt matter, if the world was collaspsing, Kobe would still make both shots.
      Thank You
      NBA Expert
      Alex Hall

  • Kevin

    LeBron James

  • http://jessemoya.com jessemoya

    I was a little too young to fully appreciate watching Jordan and the Bulls win all those championships. I knew about as well as everyone else that he was great, but to compare him to other great players so thoroughly shows just how awesome – in a literal sense – he really was (and still is, as far as class is concerned).

    I really have so much more respect for the man after this.

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  • http://theunofficialraptors.blogspot.com/ Skyer

    Out of all the current players, Lebron has to the best potential to match MJ’s greatness (because he is only 24)

    Let’s do the next installment for him?

  • http://www.hooptropolis.com Alex Garcia

    At this point the this isn’t even a debate. Kobe is a great player, probably the best I’ve seen, but he’s no Micheal Jordan. Mike was absolutely unbelievable. Stats, leadership, rings, he was basketball for the greater part of the 90’s. The next candidate will undoubtedly be Lebron. Still, even if James matches or exceeds his stats, accolades, and titles, people wont accept the comparison. No one is the next Jordan.

    Good stuff, I dug this series.

  • nathan

    Take a debate class and try again.

  • zadanu

    Out of all the current players, Lebron has to the best potential to match MJ’s greatness (because he is only 24)

    Let’s do the next installment for him??

  • graphicartist2k5

    there’s not going to be another Micheal Jordan, so stop comparing kobe bryant, lebron james, etc. to MJ. it’s not going to happen. why? simply because Michael Jordan’s work ethic was WAY stronger than Kobe’s, meaning that when Michael Jordan saw a flaw in his game, he worked at it until it became his strength. does kobe bryant do that? is kobe willing to put forth the effort required of him to leave behind him modeling his game after Jordan’s so he can have his own style? believe it or not, the reason WHY Michael Jordan will always be remembered as one of the best NBA players is because he was DISCIPLINED, and he kept his butt out of trouble. has kobe done that? NO. and that’s what inevitably shows up in his game performance. things like discipline matter a whole hell of alot more than people realize. am i saying that Michael Jordan is “perfect, and can do no wrong”? OF COURSE NOT! but the man chose to not go out and get himself involved in sleeping around, but instead chose to work on his game, which is obviously apparent, seeing as how he has 6 championship trophies, as well as other stats that no other NBA player has been able to surpass.

  • MrFreeman

    MJ: Greatest. Point blank. But I do agree that the closest that we will see to Jordan is Kobe. True, Kobe has copied Jordan all the way down to his voice and mannerisms in interviews. But, next to Jordan, who else has commanded as much respect from opposing coaches and players than Kobe? When Jordan walked out on the court, sick or in tip top shape, all eyes on him because they know if he wanted to, he could take the game over at any given time. When Kobe is on the court, he is always the most dangerous player on the court, always commanding the opposing teams best defender. One-on-one, he is fearless and almost unstoppable. Dangerous jump shot from anywhere on the court.

    I grew up watching Jordan’s games on tv and I honestly miss watching those games. My dad wasn’t big on sports but he would watch Jordan play. Hate Kobe or love him, he brings a similar feeling that I used to have as a kid watching NBA games because you are waiting to see that spectacular shot or play that will just blow your mind.

    If you are going to copy someone, copy the best. And no one has copied MJ better.

  • David

    Look up the youtube videos, and check out the defense Mike played against. Now look up some videos of the d’s kobe plays against. double, triple teamed every time he touches the ball. those zone-like D’s were illegal back in the day.

    All these old timers whining about how d was much tougher back in the day…. please. Yes, Michael was spectacular and I do think he’s the G.O.A.T, but to ignore the different defenses is inane. the vids don’t lie. youtube is the answer.

  • SkYe

    i believe if both michael jordan and kobe bryant played in the same era, same rules, etc, it’d be more fair…

    jordan’s a legend… so r a lot of others… but then, try throwing jordan in today’s games with today’s players… he might not have the stats he had then… throw kobe in jordan’s days, kobe may very well have had similar stats…

    there are so many nba greats… there were players such as the big-o, wilt chamberlain, kareem, magic, bird, etc…

    the reason for all the hype between jordan and kobe is that they are both absolutely marketable…

    i personally favor kobe over any other players, past or current… is jordan still the best? only time will tell… how about magic johnson? does everyone remember how fabulous and what an all-around player he is? he can play all the positions well back in his days.

  • AK

    First, I just want to say, great series of articles. Kobe, up until now, is probably the closest imitation of Jordan, but still far from it. Just a testament to how great Jordan was. And to further that, there is also something you overlooked. Jordan played in an era of arguably the greatest big men to play the game all in the L at the same time (Hakeem, Ewing, Shaq, Robinson, Malone, etc.), and without a serious low post threat, he still managed to trump all other teams to win title year after year.

  • Birdman

    Who is kobe?? I like people that shine in the playoffs and finals hence 0-5 finals mvp. Compare Jordan to King james or at least D WADE. Somone that at least gets 2 assists a game and shoots over 25%

  • Rosby

    The series can’t be OVER NOOWWWWWW???!!!!!
    You haven’t done LeBron “L-Train” “King James” James yet!!!!

  • Will

    This is all bogus, I’ll prove it in a series of posts.

    MJ is not the best, no one is. There is simply not a “level playing field”. Stats will lead to a false conclusion if not taken into context. For example, MJ’s fga% is higher than Kobe’s but does that mean MJ is a better “shooter” than Kobe? No, unless you’re also willing to say that MJ is a better shooter than Ray Allen and Reggie Miller who both have a lower fga% than MJ.

    Simpy put, the 3pt shot is/was more of a weapon for Kobe, Allen and Miller, It’s a tougher shot, thus the lower fga%. MJ took 1,778 3 pointers in his career, Kobe has already taken 3,489. That’s one of the differences in their games. BTW MJ’s best 3 yr stretch of 3pt shooting was when the NBA moved the line in a foot. That plus his limited number of 3 pt attempts makes his over- all fga% higher than Kobe’s, but MJ was NOT a better shooter than Kobe

  • Will

    To suggest that MJ is the better scorer than Kobe because he had 8 of 13 seasons averaging 30+ ppg is wrong. Most praise MJ for his scoring while conveniently leaving out shot attempts. Shot attempts have to be in the discussion of scoring. During those 8 seasons of 30+ ppg MJ took 15, 544 fga’s. A look at 8 of Kobe’s highest seasonal scoring averages shows he has taken 13,535 (as of now). And at least 3 of those 8 seasons Kobe played with a dominant center that demanded shots. MJ never had to do that, he had the green light from day 1. So MJ only scored more because he shot more.

    People praise MJ for his 37.1 ppg but never mention that he took 28 (rounding it off) shots per game to get it. Kobe too 27 fga’s per game to get his 35.4 ppg. If Kobe had taken the extra shot maybe he makes it, maybe not, we don’t know. If he makes it he equals or surpasses MJ’s 37.1 average. Also for his career MJ took 23 fga’s per game( the highest since Elgin Baylor), Kobe for his career averages 19 fga’s per game. MJ scored more than Kobe not because he’s the better scorer but because he shot more than Kobe (or anyone else).

    In fact I believe the evidence shows Kobe is a better game by game scorer than MJ. Kobe’s 3pt ability gives him the edge. Of MJ’s 5 top scoring games of 60+ points, 4 of them were in overtime, one of those was in double overtime. Kobe has scored 81 points in regulation, 62 in 3 quarters, 52 in a half….and has moved past MJ for consecutive 50 point games…..Kobe has set scoring records 2nd only to Wilt. MJ played against bad teams also, he had every chance(especially during his selfish years) to get 81 or even 71, but didn’t, and he even needed OT to get 60+ most of the time. Kobe Bryant is the best scorer ever in the NBA not named Wilt Chamberlain.

  • Will

    MJ is not a better passer than Kobe either. Assist average alone doesn’t tell the true story. If you drop the first 2 years when Kobe wasn’t playing starters minutes, to be fair, Kobe’s assists per game goes up to 5+ and very close to MJ’s career mark. And Kobe’s not done yet. He may equal or surpass MJ in that catagory.

    BTW, Kobe’s minutes were not limited his 1st 2 years because he could not play or wasn’t ready. The Lakers had a veteran team and did not need to play an 18 year old rookie big minutes. Read what Jerry West said about Kobe during tryouts against decent veteran NBA players. Basicaly he said it wasn’t even close, they couldn’t do anything with Kobe.

  • marc

    Michael’s really played 13 season in the league, of these 13 he was above 30 years of age 7 seasons.
    Player production in stats starts to decrease at the age of 30.
    So more than half of what we saw about mj was when he was past his prime.
    Taking his statistics and comparing him to others by that, isn’t takin into consideration how unsettled his career was. He’s been playing those washington years too and they didn’t help it either.
    If you seriously want to find out what mj was worth statstically, take his seasons before the age of 30, then compare him to players now in their prime like kobe or lebron.
    (Of course you musn’t take kobe’s first 3 years.)

    Kobe’s passed 30 already and that means that his stats are going to take a hit now surely.
    So if you make that comparison in 5 years from now, it’ll look much more mj
    sided than it does already.

    Few things about the high scoring games of kobe, wade or lebron.
    They don’t do 50 without 10 to 15 or more freethrow’s, that’s how the game was changed by those rules.
    Also you should take note of the field goal percentage of the players especially kobe.
    Mj just did do 50 with 50,60 or 70 fg%, not even wilt has been able to do that.

    Quick wing players just get to the line more often.
    This also explains why mj did have to take more shots than kobe, he’s not had the luxury to go to the line on his own wish.
    If kobe wouldn’t be that a good freethrow shooter with those plenty of opportunities, he’d not be a high scorer in the first place.
    (Tex winter – the death of defense, it’s a good read. Google it.)

    What i think shows the difference between mj and his peers most efficiently is the playoff’s.
    When did mj play some of his best game’s, when did he make the most effort and difference for his team?
    His averages are higher the in playoff’s (and that’s not just because he didn’t go to the playoff’s with washington).

    Dr. Anklesnap, how about a new comparison, solely playoff’s.
    Take the best of the best and compare them to mj.
    Would be a new set of players to work on and it would show how much mj really shined.
    I know it’s a lot of work and it’s maybe not in your interest, but i thought i’d point out that opportunity.

  • Will

    For his career MJ averaged 8.1 free throws per game. Kobe, so far, is at 7.6. So MJ got to the line more than Kobe. MJ was known for getting foul calls more than any modern player.

    And of course Kobe fga% is lower, he takes more 3 pointers, like Ray Allen or Reggie Miller as I posted.

    As far as Title comparisons between Kobe and MJ, MJ didn’t start to win until the Birds Celtics and magic’s Show-time Lakers were in the decline. Had MJ started his carer the same time as Bird and Magic he would not have those 6 rings.

    It took MJ 7 years to win a ring. By then he had a veteran battle tested team. Kobe got his young, inexperienced, somewhat soft team to the finals in 4 years through the tougest western conference ever, some said. They lost to a tough minded, veteran team headed by 3 stars hungry for rings, with the best defense in decades, led by the defensive player of the year, with home court advantage.

    Had MJ been good enough to get his young, inexperienced team to the finals in 4 years its very likely that they would have gotten slaugtered by the Show-time Lakers as Kobe’s young team did in Boston.

  • marc

    Let’s speak about the recent times, maybe last 5 years.
    Since the rules got changed he’s at 9.3 freethrow’s.

  • Will

    But most don’t qualify MJ’s acheivemenmts. They just say he did this or that and Kobe didn’t. Every generation had rules that benefited them, including MJ.

    EX: People say Kobe had an advantage on offense because he could not be hand-checked. But I’m the only one to say that must mean that MJ had an advantage on defense because he could “hand check” his opponents.

    So either you have to give Kobe more credit for his defense given the limitation or give MJ less credit for his defense because he could hand check opponents. Either way Kobe moves closer to MJ as far as defensive ability is concerned. Hand checking would allow MJ to get more physical with players and get more leverage to alter shots or get more blocks and steals. MJ’s numbers would be lower in this era and Kobe ‘s would be higher in MJ’s era. Kobe has been very good on D for most of his career. Maybe he an equal of MJ on defense but the rules don’t allow him to show it. But most just look at the stats and assume MJ was better in this or that catagory.

    Also, MJ basically sucked at 3pt shooting. The only reason MJ’s 3pt % is 30%+ is because the line was moved in for 3 years. If not for that his average would be under 30%. That’s another rule that benefited MJ, but of course thats never mentioned.

    So I mention how MJ shot more free throws than Kobe, now you want to limit it to Kobe’s last 5 years or whenever some rule was changed. Let’s be fair and consider all of MJ’s advantages also.

  • Will

    I also have issues with the “Awards” comparison between Kobe and MJ above.

    Scoring titles: Kobe spent his first 8 years playing with the most imposing force since Wilt. Even with Shaq on the team Kobe was a top scorer in the NBA. If there was no dominant big man in LA, like in MJ’s situation, Kobe could have easily led the league in scoring 10 times.

    Slam Dunk contest: This is minor but most fair mined people know Dominique Wilkins was robbed of of a Dunk contest against MJ, so MJ should only have 1 like Kobe.

    Allstar appearances: Kobe may catch MJ there.

    All defensive selections: Those late selections for MJ were more “honurary” than on ability. He wasn’t that good during those times.

  • marc

    There’s dozen of excuses you can make, you can always diminish one and defend the other.
    So how about we just measure both players impact on winning.
    Just the difference if you put kobe on and off the floor.
    That means the teammates as factor get eliminated and the only thing that is measured is “winningness”.
    To put MJ in perspective in his winningness:
    Bird and Magic had season peeaing at an improbable 12 adjusted +/-, that would make the Bobcats a frontrunner this season.
    Mj had a 13 +/- average and he peaked at 18, while kobe peaks at 10.

    The concept is very well thought out, the articles are a great read and they do hold against future predictions.And like me that guy thinks Kobe is overrated:
    Kobe has bad teammates: http://dberri.wordpress.com/2007/10/18/kobe-myths/
    Kobe is like MJ: http://dberri.wordpress.com/2006/05/14/kobe-bryant-mvp-again/
    Keep in mind that wages of wins is off 1.5 wins for a team on the season average, so it’s close to 99% of the cases right.

    Let the trainer speak:
    Phil compares Kobe and MJ: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_WNTx3gG_s

    Let the weird guy of espn speak:
    Kamala: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_WNTx3gG_s

  • Will

    Yeah, that’s the response I usually get ( “excuses” )when I start doing to MJ what people do to the career’s of anyone compared to him. You can call the “truth” excuses if you like, but it’s still the Truth.

    The fact is it’s impossible to determine who the “best” is. Unless all players played under the same conditions. Same coach, same role, same role players, same system, same competition, same rules, same era…….etc. Sorry, MJ was a great player, maybe the best, but that’s impossible to say.

    How would MJ have done if he played 8 years with Shaq, would he have gotten as many shots and scored as much, would he have been frustrated having to share the spot light with Shaq, how many rings would MJ have if he entered the league with Bird and Magic, 6? Idoubt it very seriously.

    Someone rightly said that of all the teams the Bulls beat for those 6 rings, none were as good as the Bird led Celtics, Show-time Lakers or even the 76’ers with Doc, M. Malone, Cheeks, Toney, B. Jones …..etc.

    You cal it excuses, but it’s the truth

  • marc

    In the end it’s just sports and i think we should let kobe have the benefit of the doubt till all is said and done.
    I’d personally love to see a guy playing like mike again, taking challenges and heroics on his own shoulders every night.

  • Will

    Now I agree with that. (“we should let kobe have the benefit of the doubt till all is said and done.”) But Kobe has gotten ran down for years simply because he has similar “skills” as MJ, so people make the comparison. I’ve never heard Kobe say he is better than MJ or even compare himself to MJ. But I have heard him say he doesn’t like to be compared to MJ because it’s not fair to compare him or others to such greats/legends as MJ, Bird or Magic.

    Don’t know if Kobe will acheive as much (probably won’t) but skill for skill Kobe is comparable to MJ, imo. There are things that MJ did better than Kobe and there are things that Kobe does better than MJ. Circumstances beyond the players control has a lot to do with career acheivements, ask Oscar Robertson and Elgin Baylor.

    What annoy’s me is that most only remember or talk about the good in MJ’s career. Kobe takes criticism about his relationships with teammates and coaches…etc., then they say MJ was more of a team player who made his teammates better, Kobe doesn’t. But most of what Kobe is accused of MJ did also.

    MJ “tanked” a game after being criticized for shooting too much, MJ didn’t get along with his coach and was instrumental in getting him fired (D Collins), MJ punched at least 2 teammates (S. Kerr was one of them), MJ harshly criticized and alienated teammates early on, ….etc. He was’nt always the unselfish player people like to say he was. IMO MJ didn’t make his teammates better, he had to wait until management got better players around him. MJ didn’t make Stacey King, Granville Waiters, or Brad Sellars better. He had to wait until he got H Grant, Pippen, Kerr..etc. Same with Kobe. Kobe couldn’t make Kwame Brown Pau Gasol or make Smush Parker shoot like Kerr or Paxson, he had to wait until they got the right players around him. Now as with MJ people are saying Kobe is finally making his temmates better…kinda funny to me.

    The Bulls finally got all the right pieces around MJ, he matured and developed, the elite teams of the period aged and the Bulls finally got over the hump and went on a great run. But how much of it was MJ and how much of it was a combination of a great system, coach, right combo of players…etc.

    When MJ retired the first time, still in his prime what effect did his absence have on the Bulls win/loss record? Most don’t know but the Bulls only lost 2 more games the next season without MJ. Without, most say, the greatest player ever they had only 2 more losses! Maybe it wasn’t MJ so much as the Bulls just had a wining formula. How else do you explain it. BTW, a bad call robbed the Bulls from going deeper in the playoffs that year, I believe it was against the Knicks.

    Even the personal stuff Kobe takes criticism for is not cool. “Kobe cheated on his wife”, “kobe is a rapist, adulterer”…etc. These same people praise MJ. But MJ cheated on his wife and paid the woman to be quiet about it. Magic cheated on his wife, Dr J did also (my favorite player of all-time), alledgedly D Wade…etc. But no one mentions this stuff except for concerning Kobe. I say leave the personal stuff out of it, thef ans really don’t know the player.

  • Legit

    You can’t have a “Next Michael Jordan” comparison without LeBron James. This is my response to Anklesnap’s comment from the Wade comparison.

    @Dr. Anklesnap:

    Really? Your friends and readers have a more “valuable input” than Sports Illustrated, NBC Sports, ESPN Magazine, the New York Times, and other various news outlets (search it yourself, I’ve done enough) about whether or not LeBron James is the next Michael Jordan?

    Seriously. You’re really going to disregard LeBron James off this blog because of his position? This blog is a joke. It’s not like James is a center or a power forward. Granted he’s bigger and stronger than Jordan ever was, but he’s definitely been able to prove that he has the athletic ability that MJ had and market on MJ’s level.

    What I noticed on this blog is that you never set a criteria for what “The Next Michael Jordan” needs to be. Essentially, you just find a flaw in every player and say “Jordan had that. This player didn’t.” That’s not a criteria. That’s just being stupid.

    So what? LeBron has “court vision coupled with amazing athletic ability and scoring prowess.” So now he’s compared to Dr. J and Magic Johnson? So you’re saying Michael Jordan never had the “court vision coupled with amazing athletic ability and scoring prowess” like Dr. J and Magic Johnson? And who are those “most people?” I challenge you to receive your information from a more reliable and credible source just as I did.

    LeBron James may never be what Michael Jordan was. Both are two completely different players. But so is Wade and Jordan. So is Kobe and Jordan. So is Carter and Jordan.

    Point is, every player is different. Nobody will ever be the Michael Jordan. But if you’re going to compare players that resemble Michael Jordan in some shape or form. LeBron James deserves to be on that list. Don’t agree with me? Talk to them






  • marc

    I agree with Dr. Anklesnap, james is another kind of player.
    Would sound like james does more overall and less with regards to defense and scoring.
    Jordan’s an more efficient scorer, better on d. and more clutch than lbj.
    They’re both natural leaders and both very charismatic.
    There’s too much of a difference in their style to use the same measuring stick.
    He’s isn’t slashing and driving, even with the new rules he’s still being contained.
    He’s got a good all-around game, like jordan, but jordan had some areas where he was and till date is in a class of his own.
    Like barkley says, with kobe and james you never know what’s going to unfold, with jordan you knew what he was going to do, there was just nothing you could do about it.
    Jordan’s inside game? Par Noone.
    Jordan’s Fadeaway? Par Noone.
    Do you knew why jordan never tried to develop a crossover dribble ?
    He thought he was so quick, he just could pass his opponent with his first steps, so he had no incentive to develop it.
    James is in his prime now, he’ll have 4 to 5 prime years, but statistically i don’t think it is going to better year than this year in the future for him.

  • Will

    There’s a couple of youtube videos of Kobe/MJ showing Kobe matching MJ move for move. Kobe could do all that MJ did on the court, with the added long range ability.

  • marc

    And i’ll put a video on youtube where i match kobe, move for move.
    I just don’t have his quickness, his leaping ability and i don’t have his jumpshot.
    Kobe molded his game after mj, sure he tries to adapt many traits.

    Players: Vertical Leap: Standing Reach: Highest Touch:
    Kobe Bryant 38″ 8’10” 12’0″
    Michael Jordan 48″ 8’10” 12’5″
    Shaq 32″ 9’8″ 12’4″
    Vince Carter 43″ 8’11” 12’6″
    Dr. J 41″ 8’11” 12’4″

    But like you can see kobe and mj had the same arms reach, kobe just doesn’t fly like mj did.
    Kobe is jumpshooter, mj added that fade away when he came back after his first retirement.
    Yound jordan and kobe are not similar at all, the older jordan got the more he was like kobe.

  • Jimmie Lacey

    James is a good ball player but has not won a championship yet. Kobe and Jordan have so you cant compare James with they until he wins a title.

  • Jimmie Lacey

    THERE WILL NEVER BE ANOTHER JORDAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • will

    So MJ can jump 10 inches higher than Kobe, 10, TEN!? Yet, his highest touch is only 5 inches more than Kobe, hummm, ok.

    Kobe try’s to adapt his game after MJ. Kobe DID those moves , period.

    ‘Just a jump shooter”, that’s funny, the videos I saw showed Kobe dunking all over clowns.

  • Jamaal King

    This guy exposed himself, he said jordans numbers blows Kobes away, nbut then he says Kobes a better offencive player, yea rite he also didint mention that Jordan scored 63points n a playoff game vs the boston Celtics who won the Title that Season And there home record wuz 40-1. That jORDAN PLAYOFF RECORD stands for more than 24 seasons, How is Kobe a better offencive player, wen Jordan scored all his 50point games he shot a staggering 61percent from the field, wow wut a stat line that most fanatics dont even know about, Kobe wuz a better 3point shooter barley tho. One season Jordan shot 42percent from the 3 point line and thats debatable. Kobe dosent come close to Michael Yall. These comparisons need to stop.

  • Will

    Jordan shot 42%, huh. You forgot to mention that was during the 3 years the NBA moved the line in closer. Coincidently that was also the 3 year period MJ shot his highest 3pt %. An average of MJ’s previous 8 years he shot under 30% from the 3pt line. Basically MJ SUCKED at 3pt shooting. You need to stop.

    That’ why these comparisons don’t work, there is not a level playing field.

  • marc

    Everyone is talking about athleticism, and how players improved.
    None of these new stars exactly flies like mike did.I’ve seen people dispute abou mike’s vertical numbers between 53 and 56 pop up, but i thought i’d post sth which he definately could do.
    And kobe isn’t a highfyler, that’s what i wanted to point out.

    Name: LeBron James
    Height 6’8’’
    Wingspan: 7’0¼”
    Vertical Leap: 44”

  • Will

    “Kobe not a high flyer”???? Was MJ a high flyer in his 13th season as Kobe is now?



    Kobe not a high flyer!!? You guys crack me up! ; )






  • Will

    Hi, Carla. I know you probably love MJ and think he invented the type of ball he played, but sorry he didn’t. You see, MJ also emulated those before him. Here’s a quote from an article by Jason King concerning MJ’s early years:

    “Much of his early skill and training in basketball was derived from playing with his brother Larry in the backyard at home; in his formative years he also idolized and patterned himself after the legendary Julius Erving (a.k.a. Dr. J.), one of the great players of the 1970s”.

    Sorry Carla, you ok?? Now let me set you straight. Connie Hawkins emulated Elgin Baylor. Dr J. emulated Baylor and Hawkins, MJ emulated Dr. J, Kobe eumlated MJ (also studied Doc,.). That’s not to say all their games are identical but MJ is standing on the shoulders of those before him, as Kobe and the stars of today are too. It’s not a sin or a negative to emulate the legends of the game. Don’t make it a “negative” for Kobe.

  • Will

    BTW Carla, I challenge you to find in my posts where I said Kobe is better than MJ overall.

  • NextMJ

    Please stop comparing these great players to MJ, the King. They are in their own terms greatest. There’s only one and only one King, The MJ. Only other athletic compares to MJ would be Bruce Lee, Pelle and Michael Pelps like one in a 100 billion.

    MJ had everything: carisma, confidence, power, good looks, who actually enjoyed and loved the “Game”.

    MJ for President!!!

  • LTrain

    This is a very good piece and very valid points were made. The only problem I have with it, is the same problem I have with most pieces comparing the 2. The very things people talk negatively about Kobe for are the things they act like Jordan was Great for. There is no QUESTION, about Jordans Greatness and honestly I think its unfair to even try to compare someone to MJ because the masses would NEVER accept someone being better then HIM regardless of whether it is true or not. However, lets not act like Jordan was always the best teammate. He jacked individuals up, pissed off people because of the way he spoke to them and people overlook that and say it was his WILL to win that caused him to do that. I just would like to have the playing fields even. I could go on about some of the things that Jordan did that people look the other way about but Im not here to bash MJ because I think he is the GOAT also. But as someone who has seen both individuals put in WORK, it does annoy me that people talk so badly about Kobe and try to say certain things are the reason why he is not the greatest, and then turn around and those exact SAME things are the reason JORDAN IS THE GOAT… its not right…

    and one last thing…. it would be nice if people would stop acting like the Jordan supporting cast where only good supporting cast members for MJ.. that is not the case. Individuals that were on the Bulls championship teams have won titles in other places without MJ… so while some would never have gotten close without MJ, lets not fool ourselves like they havent been viable role players for other teams without MJ and won also… He did make his teamates better but its not like these guys were bums, who couldnt play a good role anywhere else…

  • Kdubya

    Dang, Kobe!!! Don’t you have anything better to do with your time than posting to thehoopdoctors.com as “Will”???

  • Jesse

    To those people arguing about the impossibility of comparing the 2 players due to their different eras: In 2001-2002, Kobe at age 23/24 and Jordan at age 38/39 both played in the league.
    Points per game: Kobe 25.2, Jordan 22.9
    Rebounds: Kobe 5.5, Jordan 5.7
    Assists: Kobe 5.5, Jordan 5.2
    Steals: Kobe 1.5, Jordan 1.4
    Blocks: Kobe .4, Jordan .4

    Jordan, at age 38-39, without his speed, stamina, or jumping ability, almost matched the numbers of a prime Kobe. Nobody in their right mind would claim that Jordan at 24 wasn’t far better than Jordan at 39. Jordan > Kobe.

  • Robert Reeves

    Jesse, tell me you didn’t just suggest that Kobe at age 23 was in his prime. Seriously? And don’t even try with that 23/24 crap, Kobe’s birthday is in August. He was 23. How about the very next season when he was putting up 30-7-6? Of course you wouldn’t mention that.

    Overall, I’ve argued this too many times, and my argument is not controversial enough to go far in depth. I’d like to point out, however, that MJ was not a better passer than Kobe. In fact, I’d say their passing is almost exactly equivalent, if we’re dealing so heavily with numbers.

    Under the triangle offense, which undermines high assists totals, MJ averaged 5.1 apg. Kobe has averaged… 5.1 apg. Genius.

  • Demelius Harper

    Jordan and kobe are great but Jordan is the G.O.A.T. if jordan wasn’t around to be kobe’s protoype, he would not be who he is period!!! Jordan said he wished he could play kobe at his prime. if they were born at the same time who would kobe copy to b better than jordan???? The master learned from his elders and improved upon it. kobe just learned from the master and comes off as counterfeit. kobe is a great player no doubt, but he ain’t winning Defensive POY anytime soon and / or winning 6 Finals MVP’s while leading the league in scoring simultaneously and going 6 – 0 in finals appearances anytime soon. G.O.A.T. MJ23

  • Rich

    This is why kids shouldn’t be allowed to post on “teh internets”.

    There is no debate. There is no discussion. I saw both of them play in person and TV. Jordan in his prime, and Kobe in his prime. In a league where every team had asassins every night (Pistons – Aguirre, Dumars, Johnson, Thomas, Rodman, etc; Celtics – Bird, Parish, Mchale, Ainge) Jordan had to bring his A game every night. He had to learn the game, master all facets of it, and do it playing against a triple team.

    This punk Kobe comes along and ‘refuses to play for Charlotte, and demands a trade to LA?’. Garbage. Bush league. Punk attitude. See, Jordan went to the Bulls, which was the Bobcats of his day, and he MADE them champions. Kobe? Rode a big man’s coattails, and then got prison raped by the Celtics last year.

    People lined up to play with the Bulls. The best LA can do is A Grizzlie and an overrated Miami Heat player (odom). No one’s beating down the doors to play for LA. But back when Shaq was a Laker, the Mailman, Gary Payton and every washed up legend was doing a minstrel dance to play in LA. But just Kobe? “Nah… Pass… We’ll all go play for the Celts. Where we can win.”

    Jordan was a man. He never punked out like this kid Lebron who refused to shake the Magic’s hand. He never ran superstars out of town. He was the best at what he did.

    Let’s put it this way. If you’re a Janitor – but you’re the MJ of janitors? Then you are a millionaire who owns a cleaning empire. If you’re the Kobe of janitors? You push a mop bucket and clean up piss. But you do it with flair.

    Kids today have no clue what it means to work. To WIN. To excel against odds. Kobe is not a hero. He’s a symbol of your weak generation.

  • Tony

    Will, lay off the drugs. I’m not trying to sound like a dick, but your rambles were pointless. Obviously, you never watched Jordan back in the day. I’ve never seen somebody post so much bullshit into a few paragraphs.

    Whether you believe it or not, facts are facts and the stats don’t lie. Kobe is a great player, but he’s still nowhere close to Michael Jordan’s level, and you take it way too personally.

    Great players come and go, but Michael Jordan’s skill and endurance will forever remain untouched. People truly forget how unbelievable Michael was, and it’s sad to see.

    Please check out some old Jordan videos on Youtube or watch some replays of his classic games, because he was truly one of a kind. His approach, determination, skill set, commitment, and mental toughness can never be duplicated. His competitive drive was one of a kind.

    Michael Jordan’s ability to come through in the clutch, time and time again, not only made him the greatest basketball player of all time, but the best athlete of all time, because no athlete came through for his team as often as Michael, nor remained committed to winning like Michael.

    It’s unfair for any athlete to be compared to Michael, because his level can’t ever be reached, Enjoy other athletes for their achievements, and their accomplishments because guys like Michael come around only once in a lifetime.

  • mike

    m.j. is the consensus favorite for this argument of course, because of his numbers, because of the fact that he’s in the past, and because kobe is hated all across the u.s.a. except in los angeles. but in all honesty, there’s really not much distance between jordan and kobe, if any at all. stats are misleading. kobe’s ppg would have been much higher if he had had a team to himself early on. kobe’s 35.4 ppg season, and the next season when he averaged nearly 40 ppg after the all-star break, are proof that kobe could definitely have scored jordan-like numbers if he had been on a team where he was the #1 option. put shaq on jordan’s 80’s teams, and his ppg would have been several ppg lower as well.

    the most intriguing stat is that jordan’s fg% is substantially higher – yeah, but most of the players he played against probably wouldn’t even make an nba roster these days. jordan dominated lesser athletes on the low block, this alone explains his fg% being so high. he was the biggest, strongest, meanest athlete at the 2/3 position BY A MILE. it wouldn’t be the same situation today. i mean, jordan went up against some good ones – ‘nique was his most athletic contemporary, hardaway was good, clyde the glide was still around, dr.j as near the tail end of his career, reggie was good but not a dominating athlete by any means, i may be missing a few – but today’s nba boasts an entirely different caliber of athlete. iverson, wade, ray allen, roy, ginobili, durant, LEBRON, anthony, richardson, (pre-injury) vince carter, (pre-injury) mcgrady, arenas, even guys like redd and brewer and artest… any of those guys would have been SUPERSTARS in jordan’s era. hell even pietrus would’ve killed back then… physically, they are all just way stronger, faster, more explosive than anything jordan saw on a consistent basis. put those guys in the league back then, no way jordan shoots over 50%, because he wouldn’t have been able to punk them down low on the block for easy looks. these guys look like nfl linebackers nowadays (redd, brewer, arenas, pietrus… all shredded), jordan would embarrass them one way or another but he would NOT physically dominate like he always used to.

    then again, kobe plays in an era of no hand-checking. truth be told, doesn’t make much of a difference in kobe’s style, definitely would’ve helped jordan. IMO, kobe would’ve averaged over 40 a game back then in jordan’s position with the athletic superiority, and same goes for jordan in this era, he would’ve done some serious damage in the penalty situation, because of his more physical nature.

    all this being said, kobe and jordan are not the same player. kobe is more of a methodical ballhandler/penetrator/jump shooter , jordan was the super aggressive pit bull on the low and mid post and unstoppable attacker in iso. jordan was a more explosive athlete than kobe is, but kobe is perhaps more agile. overall i’d say jordan was a slightly better athlete on the whole. on the other hand, while jordan had great fundamental skills, he not was NOT as technically sound as kobe. kobe’s footwork and ballhandling are the best the game has ever seen for a wing player. jordan made pathways into wing-type footwork that kobe not only has adopted but has advanced much further… for instance, jordan’s bread and butter was the combination of the double pivot or the turnaround fadeaway with his back to the basket on the mid post, between the two moves he was very difficult to read and even harder to stop. kobe does the same thing, but that is only one small part of his extensive arsenal in that same position… it’s actually his back-pivot series, not the double forward pivot, that is kobe’s most lethal weapon… kobe has perfected that move, at any time he’ll wheel around, as if conceding post position, and then spring right into attack form, face up and assess his options for a split second. the reverse pivot opens up a vacuum of space between he and the defender. he’s guaranteed a few feet of space for an instant, because if the defender tries to body back up on him immediately and take away the cushion, kobe will get the step on him no problem and get to the hole. facing up, kobe can throw a million fakes and jabs and looks, waiting for the defender to bite, to show a sign of weakness, and exploit accordingly, all the while keeping his pivot foot anchored and fully capable of pivoting back into post position. and another thing about kobe… he’s phenomenal at squaring himself to the basket while raising up for the jumper, the only player i’ve seen who can consistently shoot jumping off of and leading with either foot. this makes him absolutely impossible to time for the challenge/block, and allows him to shoot and score from any possible position he can ever find himself in, a weapon that he alone out of all the players in the game’s history can be said to possess. that, along with his phenomenal ball-handling and active footwork on the dribble allows kobe to create pretty much at the speed of his thoughts. his movements on the basketball court are all precisely calculated, precisely chosen in the instant. kobe is the most graceful artist to ever lace up sneakers, in my opinion. his creativity with the ball is absolutely ridiculous.

    jordan was definitely the superior low-post player and the better finisher around the rim. you had to hit jordan as hard as you could to prevent him from completing an and-1, and sometimes that wasn’t enough. simply put: jordan was a monster on the block, way too ferocious and resolute for anyone to handle. kobe is good on the low post against smaller defenders and can out-wit larger ones, but he doesn’t dominate the block like jordan did, that’s for sure. defensively, i’d say it’s a toss up between the two. more people would prolly say jordan for sure on this one, but given the inferiority of his competition, it’s hard to just give the defensive edge to jordan. suffice to say, jordan never had to guard a guy like wade or melo or lebron, kobe takes those challenges all the time. put chris mullen in front of kobe, hehe, and kobe would look like a defensive god too. case in point – during the fiba championships or whatnot, there was that shooting guard on spain or argentina i think who was averaging like 20+ ppg in international play, and kobe held him to like 3 points or something ludicrous like that. its because the guy was only a shooter and not a contemporary nba caliber athlete, could never get separated from a beast like kobe. jordan was going up against those types of guys day in and day out, dudes who were fundamentally solid but far inferior athletically.

    overall, i’d say jordan was more consistently dominant than kobe, and it shows in his numbers. but kobe at his absolute best versus jordan at his absolute best? i’d take kobe actually. when kobe gets rolling and is super focused, i think he’s better than jordan at his best. jordan never once got close to 80 points in a game. kobe only reached that mark once but there has been multiple other games when he easily could’ve gone 70+. jordan will prolly leave a greater legacy – kobe can contest this by winning a string of titles with these lakers – but kobe has shown us moments of brilliance that no one in history can match, not even jordan. jordan is the greatest so far, but kobe seems to have an extra gear than even jordan didn’t have, and when he’s really feelin’ it, he is the best basketball player the world has ever seen.

    then again, that is only my opinion (a biased one at that). ultimately, comparing players across eras is unfair. all that can be said about either of them is that they dominated their era, that they were the transcended figures in the sport for a time, that they were champions. if kobe can win a few more rings, then in any objective sense, he will be jordan’s equal.

  • mike

    kobe is more of a jazz musician, jordan was straight gangster rap.

  • http://thehoopdoctors.com shane

    kobe bryant is the best player ever in the NBA!!!!! i say this because players get more athletic as they keep going…michael couldnt keep up…hence the wizards…kobe is still breaking records and hes not even showing a hint of being washed out….and for your king james fans….kobe is way older then james and hes still outplaying him…hence the fact kobe can keep taking him everytime they play and the fact the lakers are in the championship and james is in his chair crying about it while watching kobe and derek fisher take home there 4th NBA championship

  • http://thehoopdoctors.com shane

    and jsut so were clear…kobe didnt copy mjs moves he only perfected what mj couldnt finish! get real ppl….u need to know the future is always stronger than the [past

  • http://thehoopdoctors.com shane

    hey jamal dont forget who we call mr. 81….not offensive….wtf are you smoking and where can i get it

  • http://thehoopdoctors.com shane

    o and when did you see michael score 40 points in the finals…not never!

  • http://thehoopdoctors.com/online2/ Dr. Anklesnap

    @Shane – I realize you like Kobe and all, but you may want to get some facts before you comment.

    Michael Jordan actually has the NBA Finals record of averaging 41 points per game over an entire NBA Finals series in 1993. He had 4 straight games that Finals of over 40 points, one of which was 55 points.

    MJ also has 6 of the top 12 NBA playoff scoring games of all time. Kobe doesn’t even have one game that cracks the Top 20 list.

    Kobe is a great player, but the problem with some of Kobe’s fans is they have short memories or weren’t even alive or old enough to witness the Greatest of All-Time, Michael Jordan.

    It can lead to some false assumptions about how Kobe stacks up against MJ. Think first. Type second.

  • Russ

    How about comparing Jordan to the greats of the pre Bulls dynasty era that he was being compared to when he came into the league………I’m 19 by the way so I’m too young to really appreciate the 90s greats and the other ancients the way i appreciate the King or Kobe or T-Mac(Rockets fan), so putting a series like this together for proto-“Jordanites” would be interesting.

  • detrich swain

    i think a lot of the problem is that the old crowd dont wanna give this new generation the respect they deserve, if we leave it to the masses, noone will ever be better than jordan! we all know it is blastphomey to talk about someone being better than mj, even though in most cases the next generation learned from the previous and perfected it! of course the hoop doctors are biased because they love jordan, they are so quick too point out stats but never talk about the circumstances surrounding certain stats, sometimes numbers dont tell the whole situation! jordan in his prime in this era would be good but would not dominate! kobe learned from jordan like jordan learned from doctor j, jordan perfected dr j, and kobe perfected jordan, and kobe is doing it in a tough western conference night in and night out, this conference is even tough compared to the conferences in mj’s hey day! kobe is only 30 with what is about too be his 4th ring, getting six is surely not out of the question!

  • Josh

    Will is just about the only guy talking some sense in here and some of you knuckleheads are acting like he spewed bullshit? He’s come in here with stats you all can check! The Jordan/Kobe comparison is a LOT closer than many of you are willing to admit. And it will only continue to become closer as Kobe continues to mature and to lead his current team to multiple titles.

    He’ll never get more Finals MVPs than Jordan (though he deserves at least one of the ones that Shaq got- the Pacers series stands out). He’ll never get more season MVP’s than Jordan (only because he was robbed by writers who were willing to give Nash two of them…ridiculous). But book it- he will match or exceed Jordan’s total points scored, he will match or exceed Jordan’s all-defensive 1st team and all-NBA 1st team selections (he’s only got two of each to go in order to tie), he has already exceeded Jordan’s all-star mvp selections (4 to Jordan’s 3), he will end with a scoring average much closer to Jordan’s than it currently is (somewhere around 27 ppg), he will end with similar assist and rebound #’s…he will shoot a higher FT% and a higher 3-pt% for his career and he will do that having taken more 3 pt shots than Jordan did and more CONTESTED 3 pt shots than Jordan did).

    In the end, this is a totally subjective thing. I’m not denying Jordan is the GOAT in many respects- but denigrating Kobe like he’s just some hack rather than the legitimate Air-Apparent is just silly. It’s like trashing Miles Davis because he wasn’t Dizzy Gillespie. It’s like bagging Coltrane because he wasn’t Charlie Parker. It’s asinine, couch-potato, armchair critic bullshit.

  • Bacon

    First off, congrats to Kobe for his 4th NBA championship and his first finals MVP. I love watching him play and I’m glad to be alive at a time when I can watch one of the all-time greats.

    That being said, it seems the Jordan fans are always backing up their arguments with facts and stats. Whereas the Kobe followers seem to be giving a lot of special circumstance and reasons as to why Kobe could have done more or should have deserved more. Kobe may be more skilled of a player, but all conjecture aside, it’s all about winning when it matters the most right?

    In six finals appearances:
    Kobe – 4 wins, 2 losses, 1 MVP
    Michael – 6 wins, 0 losses, 6 MVP

    I’m a Kobe fan, but I must admit that’s impressive. Never losing in the finals and MVP every time? Come on, that’s ridiculous. You have to give credit when it’s due. Now, Kobe is not done yet, and for all we know he could rack up more championships and finals MVP’s before he retires, further closing the gap in this debate. But until then, that’s exactly what it is, a possibility. That’s the problem, you can’t compare what one could do to what another has already done. When Kobe retires, then we can revisit this debate with more seriousness. Until then all you can do is compare their bodies of work, and as stands currently:

    #1 Jordan
    #2 Kobe

  • detrich swain

    old school give it a rest! kobe will be better than jordan when his career is done, point blank period!

  • MIKE

    everybody knows kobe is GOAT! even jordan himself would fear the mamba if the 08-09 lakers met up with the 95-96 bulls! kobe would shut it down. yeah maybe jordan is far out the better “player” in nba standards not to take away anything from him cause i mean c’mon its jordan!!!…..but better than kobe he will never be you may see many jordans as this website shows many jordans but you will never see another kobe! 81 points! MVP shouts from KNICKS fans hahaa! thats crazy even Jordan himself couldnt believe it this guy bryant is on his own category all alone! this guy is just a monster killer insticnt

  • james

    kobe already admitted jordan is the greatest.

  • Jay

    81 points……..against a struggling Toronto Raptors team. 81 is a lot. But if you were compare ( which is only fair) what Jordan did from his rookie season till age 30 to Kobes rookie season till he was thirty, Jordan did so much more…….and in less time too(because his injury that took him out for almost a whole season; and when he left for two years to play baseball) He still did more than Kobe. Another thing…..KOBE HIMSELF ADMITTED TO JORDAN BEING THE GREATEST!!! Jordan wasn’t only the greatest basketball player…ESPN experts voted him the greatest athlete of the century!!! THE GREATEST ATHLETE IN ANY SPORT!!! Remember, he retired because he didn’t have anything else to prove………the game got boring to him!!!!! Hands down the greatest player to ever play the game……………Will, Kobe is a great player too, just don’t defend a player that doesn’t agree with you…….like Kobe said himself……..”JORDAN IS THE GREATEST PLAYER TO EVER PLAY THE GAME.” And the fact that Jordan never stood in the shadow of any of his teammates……..Kobe was in the shadow of Shaq for all three of their rings………Jordan was the leader and captain of his team……………………in nobodys shadow……………period

  • Bill Porter

    Michael Jordan still has the top selling line of sneakers on the market. His shoes are still selling like hotcakes and are still the most popular…NO other athlete of any sport can say that…That is a sign of true greatness and real legendary status>>”noff said

  • Mack

    LeBron James is the best comparison in terms of athleticism

    Kobe is the best comparison in terms of skills and mentality

    Dwyane Wade is probably the best comparison in terms of stats (LeBron too)

    Those three are still in the league, and they are the trifecta carrying the Jordan torch. No one of the individuals is more like Jordan than the other. Personally, I think Wade is going to be the best player in the league when Kobe retires, but they are close enough in age (Wade 27/ Kobe 31) so LeBron has got a few more years then those two to get his rings and mvps and whatever else.

  • marc

    Jordan had a 48 inch vertical and a 4.3 secs. 40 yards dash.

    Kobe has had a 38 inch vertical when he still could jump and he’s had a 4.8 secs. 40 yards dash.

    Lebron is pinned at 4.4 secs. 40 yards dash and 44 inch vertical leap.

    Guess again…

  • nicco

    Sidestepping the “who is better” question, the article is in need of some serious revision.

    One: Kobe, clearly, can do it without Shaq. All mention otherwise in the article should be cut. The question is, could Micheal have done it without Pippen? What Jordan some fans often forget is that Scottie Pippen was a hall-of-famer in his own right.

    Two: If, as the article states, “performing on the NBA’s greatest stage, the NBA Finals, and winning an award recognizing your achievement towards your contribution to your team’s success is the ultimate praise given out by the league” then, please, when this article does get around to being revised, do not say something to the effect of “but Kobe only won one of them.” No, stand by your convitions and type it out: Kobe has been honored with the “ultimate praise.”

    Three: If we are to chatise Kobe for driving Phil and Shaq out of LA then we must also note that Jordan–fearless leader–abandoned his team for two years to play baseball. Oh wait, that would be a surface-level explanation of the events that occured during that time. You mean to tell me that taking a trite and superficial account doesn’t deliver due justice. Go figure.

    The fact is that Phil Jackson came back, Derek Fisher came back. The author says that Kobe didn’t make his teammates better but forgets that it was Micheal Jordan who personally chose Kwayme Brown before he was shipped to LA and we all know how that story ends. Some are just so broke that they can’t get better. I am sure, however, that the fact that Trevor Ariza and Kobe Bryant are like brothers has nothing to do with his improved play.

    Four: Facts and stats, facts and stats.

    Jordan fans have proven that it cannot be just about championships and MVPs because they rarely mention Bill Russell. He has nearly twice as many championships and nearly as many MVPs. If it is acceptable for Jordan fans to concede that Bill Russell was in a different era–that eras, in fact, exist it all, then we must also view Bryant through this prism. Just sayin.

  • nicco

    Dr. Anklebreaker: “When you really get down to comparing Kobe’s competitive edge with that of Michael Jordan you have to wonder, would MJ have ever turned away Phil Jackson and Shaquille O’Neal, regardless of his off-the-court relationships with the two? I highly doubt it. Michael loved to win too much.”

    Jordan ran Doug Collins out of town.

    You are right that Jordan wanted to win: he punched his teammates out, and threw temper tandrums galore.


  • elijah

    look mj is by far da greatest but this list is making it look like kobe scks or something u know. like the mvp difference kobe should have a total of at least 4 mvps the 2 years nash one and the year dirk one but kobe is arguably the most hated player in the league and its been like that ever since he got in so im just sayin

  • Al A

    81 points is a hell of a statement

  • Chevy_ali

    Face it…nun Compare to Jordan. If had to compare I would put Kobe, but Jordan Is the BEst scorer, player he’s best in alomost every aspect of the game, mith the ones he’s being compared with…Jordan Masterd the game faked his retirement… if he would have just stayed those two fake retirements his stats would just be even more amazing than what they alreadi are….he’s the best hands down….

  • don

    Many of you have said compare Jordan to Kobe by his highlights.Thats very misleading because the only way to compare.The two great athletes is by watching full games of them.Because thats where you see the major difference between Jordan and Kobe.I guarantee if those of you that hold Kobe in such high regard would watch full games of each in their prime. You would change ur opinion if not completely atleast to a significant degree. Meaning you would see just how well rounded Jordan really was instead of going by highlights and stats.Which r great comparisons for an idea of how the two measure up.Stats and highlights alone though dont give you the full overall performance of each player unless you watch full games of each. Ive made my comparison between the two this way since i got to watch them both in their prime. If you never have then how can you argue. That said try it then tell me Kobe is better. I guarantee Jordan would whip Kobe period. Now if id never seen Jordan play a full game in his prime though id probably pick Kobe. Thats where opinion and rumors get started though you have to watch them both in full games to make a true comparison,

  • JJ

    It’s a neverending debate, but a pointless one.

    It’s like saying The Beatles (Jordan) are the greatest musical act ever, while saying the Michael Jackson (Kobe Bryant) doesn’t come close.

    You can’t compare them because they’re two different players from two different eras. How do you think the Beatles’ “Yesterday” track would have gone on the charts during Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” heyday? What if they played “Bad” during the days when everything was black and white?

    The one thing I think we can agree on is that Jordan has had a better overall career to this point. But that doesn’t mean he’s necessarily better than Kobe. It can’t be compared.

  • Dk22

    this is a hard break down bcuz kobe came into the league to an all star laker team wit shaq, eddie jones. nick the quick etc. he didnt go to college to as mike did which better prepared him he was 21 kobe was jus 18. now work ethic plays a part but phil played a major role himself because neither kobe nor jordan won titles before him or wit out him. it was phil system that made players better. the bulls still went to the playoffs wit out mike when he retired the first time n the lakers would have still made it to the playoffs if they had let kobe go and kept shaq an phil. If we want to know who was better ask ron harper, dennis rodman people who played with both. To make this comparison better throw out kobes first 2 to 3 years and all his stats shoot up. people say kobe is selfish for not wantin to pass the ball. In the finals against the pistons no other laker average mored than 10 points besides shaq and kobe and you wonder why he selfish. its not the best players fought for being selfish it was the cast around him since kobe enter the league it was him and shaq they never had a consistent third options year to year.kobe and jordan defensively are equal. Jordan just may egde him on being a better back side or a better help defender. The competion kobe plays against night after night is better than jordan faced. In fact someone spoke of discipline kobe and mike are both disciplined. Kobe troubles was because of sex and he was not found guilty and mike cheated to even had another kid he jus didnt get charged with raped so graphic artist 2k5 i know im late to the party but think and investigate before you make a fool of yourself . you shot yourself in the foot with that comment. Now back to the topic lets compare shaq was injured damn near a whole season in which kobe average thirty n set records for most games over 35 since wilt and lead the lakers to the playoffs. In fact had their been no shaq in kobes career his numbers might just be the better than mike because mike was always number 1 and because kobe was so young he had to play second fiddle. Now kobe did make the lakers better once shaq left we tend to forget that the year after the finals lost to the pistons the lakers missed the playoffs, but had not been for kobe missing a bunch of games that year they would have made the playoffs. In fact if youll will think back with me the year the lakers led the suns 3-1 that was a pretty good team they werent favorites but who would be when your starting center is kwame brown. During the season in which they aquired pau gasol the lakers were in the top four of the western conference had not Andrew Bynum got hurt and they had no Pau Gasol the would still be one of the best teams in the nba. we just have to wait until kobes career is finished to really compare the two. I think in my opinion Kobe is a better offensive player than Mike,ive seen both play kobe mored than jordan but to me kobe has more moves and he is a more consistented shooter which is another reason why kobe doesnt average more points or assists.If kobe would attack more like a Dwade, Lebron, or Mj he would get more free throws attempts which would make the game longer,get more easy baskets which would boost his shooting percentage. Attacking would also give him more assists because the defense would collapse leaving open shooters, but being his pure shooting ability he tend to rely on that in which gives defenders breaks cuz anybody will live wit you taking jumpers but getting to the hole, drawing fouls, getting teammates involved puts too much pressure on defenders, but Mike is a better defender which in the end makes them even neither is better they just came into the league at the times they were needed and dominanted their respected competitors. why dont youll try comparing Magic and Lebron to Mj.

  • Dk22

    come on now to day best defender is Ron Artest but Al Harrington gave him forty and kobe gets the better of Ron most nights that they played against each other. Mj defensively guarded people who were not athletic jeff hornacek was a good player but who anybody can guard him hornacek today is JJ Reddick even though hornacek is better than Reddick do u think Kobe cant hold Reddick to under 10 points damn near every night and he held Vince Carter to 10 who is a great athlete and good shooter. If we just examine the People Kobe defends to the people Mj defended you would get a whole different view on these players. Mj had Pippien to do his dirty work and now that Kobe has Ron Artest we will see what its like for Kobe to be able to roam around the court and he will be able to conserve more energy during the game for late game surges. In Jordan day the league was dominanted by big men centers and power forwards so jordan really guarded spot up shooters such as Dell Curry, Nick Anderson, Nate Mcmillan, come on people im average height an i can guard these people even JJ Reddick if i were in nba shape

  • marc

    Shaq and Gasol were arguably the best centers in the game respectively.
    To compare to MJ shouldn’t you be the best player in your team ?

    Or to phrase it like BBR did: http://www.basketball-reference.com/blog/?p=4353

    Being a top10 player for the 2000’s is a great acomplishment, but kobe was never the best at any time in this league in that decade.

    He probably isn’t even top20 alltime nba material.
    While MJ surely is top5.( to say the least )

  • ck1

    Wow ur kobe fans r annoying

  • ck1

    Is that all u kobe fans talk bout is an 81 pt game against a shitty team and rookie and in a league with no hand checking,def 3 second calls the game has been modified to get the scoring up ur dumb kids,,in the 90s there we’re dominat d’s teams,rules that benifited def teams,which made the scoring lower..stern changed that each year about after jordan left..the game is about gettn to the basket freely and gettn more open shots up..so stop this 81 talk..ok he did it..so?mj did what he had to do to win,kobe for the 1st 11years of his career did it for himself,mjs points r within the framework of the game plan as phil jackson said!!he said kobe hasn’t learned that yet,,till now..his 13th year!!and he only has 2 scoring titles..he played with a guy that had a triple team every trip on off in shaq so that leaves 2 at the most 3 guys to gaurd 4 remaining players kobe being one of them.so he’s shooting a lot of open j’s but yet he can’t shoot over 47 percent in a year ever?and his assist should b a lot higher wen u hav a guy like shaq finishing ur passes try throwing lobs and passes to dave corzine,cartwright,purdue,king,etc hell he’s got gasol now the best big in the game..kobe only has 1 season of +2 steals a game ?mj has more +3 steals avg.in a year Than that,kobe has never blocked more than 1 shot a game in a season mjs done it numerous times and in the same year had 3+steals a game and high 2+steals a game along with 1+ blocks a game,,and who is the guy that said mj got more steals and blocks because of hand checkng!!? Have u ever played ball?wow what a dumb statement..I think mjs 48 vertical and 4.3 speed and unmatched desire did that buddy..don’t give me that era bs either..mj played as well and better at 38 than kobe did in the same year at 23 with a bumb knee..3yrs off n outta rythem and during his comeback. Training broke his rib was the only ootion on a wizard team that was horrid,,go look up what mj did at 23,,,kobes age is no excuse in fact he had more games and practice at the nba level than mj did at 23,,huge advantage.I won’t waiste my type on the stats and awards comparison kobe is more on drexlers level than mjs there..

  • kobe bryant

    micheal jordan sucks he is a b

  • jason harkness

    first of all lebron has alot more to prove he hasnt proved shit but a meesly MVP award .. kobe bryant is better then MJ on the defensive end forsure.. he is a better passer.. if i remember correctly mj used to be the worst ball hog of all time.. the degree of dificulty in the shots that kobe makes are outrageously harder then those that micheal jordan would take… even phil jackson said that… kkkkk you and go to hell if you hate on my boy… OH YA 81PTS. BITCHES WHAT HAPPEND TO JORDAN NOWHERE EVEN CLOSE TO 81 HAHAHAHAHAHAHA LOL

  • marc

    mj was the greatest perimeter defender of his era, so is kobe ?

    mj 6.2 assists, kobe 5.3 assists – it helps reading the articles….

    kobe is a jumpshooter, mj was all artistry and athleticism. The young version of kobe played like an old mj – fadeaway and three.

    jackson, winter and harper all are mj guys so to say.

    Flawed post jason harkness, try to inject some truth and test your facts.
    I can sort out links for all my comments for you, if you want to read and watch it’s true.



  • Jonesee

    This argument is really not an argument. When you look at history… Michael Jordan revolutionized the game of basketball. Without Jordan there would not be a Kobe wanting to be like Jordan. Jordan was the first marketable athlete who turned the NBA into a walking billboard around the world. Jordan was the most influential player to the game of basketball. He was the one who wore his shorts baggy. He was the one who made it fashionable to wear your wrist band on your elbow. He was the one who made shoe companies want to find the next MJ. Nike would not be Nike without Jordan. I have to say that Michael Jordan ruined the NBA. Instead of featuring teams, the NBA now is trying to feature individuals coz teams don’t make the NBA money, individuals do.

    Kobe hasn’t done much more than any other good basketball player has done. Yes he’s won championships, but did he really innovate? All he did was imitate. Yes Jordan idolized Dr J, but Jordan didn’t play like Dr J move for move. The 2nd most influential player to revolutionize the NBA in recent years isn’t even Kobe it would have to be Allen Iverson. He of the hip hop era turned the NBA into a rap video. Dennis Rodman was the first to tattoo his entire body but everyone called him a nut. Iverson does it and everyone else follows ie Kobe. He sported the cornrows and what do you know… everyone wants them. Added the head band which Cliff Robinson tried hard to start it as a trend but no one cared for the head band until Iverson rocked it. Then we go to the arm sleeve. Iverson started that trend as well.

    Now to say is Kobe better then Jordan? All he did was just fine tuned what Jordan created. When you look at the 90’s Bulls you’ll see that that was a running team. Jordan’s points came via fast brakes, ie higher fg%. But you also have to realize the Jordan had a mad mid range game. If Kobe can master the mid range like Jordan he might be better than Jordan. Most of Jordan’s points came from mid range and post ups. Another thing that Jordan has that Kobe does not is hang time. Kobe tries, but Jordan was just fluid. Closest to Jordan in hang time would be Vince Carter but we all know he’s all flash and no substance.

    In a nutshell, comparing numbers during different eras don’t mean anything. You have to look at influence to the game. Like I said, if there was no Jordan, there wouldn’t be a Kobe.

  • Don

    Put it this way… 20 years from now will anyone be looking for the next Kobe or still looking for the next Jordan?

  • desir

    To the people who said that kobe face tougher competitions than jordan because the nba players of today are stronger jump higher, faster, and overall way more athletics. Let me drop a few names on u: oscar robertson, bill russels, clyde frasier, robert parish, kevin mchale, isaiah thomas, joe dumars, moses malone, the great larry bird etc.. Some of the amazingly great basketball players were slow, some could not jump a lick, some were not athletics at all. To say that the current nba players are better because they are stronger and more athletics, obviously u clowns don’t know anything about basketball. The old school players would run rings around the current nba players because they were more fundamentals, have a higher iqs about basketball, play a team concepts of ball with less egos, and other intangibles u can’t see like characters, love for the game, and discipline. A perfect example of an old school type of player playing in the modern era is tim duncan. He can’t jump, he is not quick, he is slow, not athletic at all, but boy can he play basketball. I am not even going to answer that. Jordan played against dude who had high basketball iqs and who understood the game, and who played a team oriented defensively and offensively. If basketball was all about athleticism and jumping ability, how come jordan could not pass the conference final when he was at his athletic best(probably the best athletic display the nba has ever seen and will ever see). jordan started winning championships when he had to rely less on his athletic ability and more on his fundamentals, and his baketball iq. To say that players in the old school would not make the nba rosters, u guys must b clowns who don’t know anything about basketball. I call u guys top ten espn sportcenter type of basketball follower. U clowns only watch basketball games to see someone getting dunked on. Even though kobe is a great player and have tremendous skills, he is not even close to jordan. Let me take u clowns to logic 101.If u ask sportcasters, nba analysts, current and ex nba players, regular fans around the world, they will tell you jordans game is as close to perfection,if not perfection u will ever see in a basketball player. To say that kobe is beter than jordan is to say that kobe’s game is flawless and he has perfected the game of basketball. We all know that’s far from being true. Kobe copied not only copied jordan’s game, but also his speech, his maneurism, his swagger and his charisma, but he is just waterdown version of him. Just like us kobe is mesmerize and spellbound about jordan. That’s the reason he tried to imitate him so much. Let’s look at stats just a bit. I mostly pay attention to playoffs and finals. Jordan won six championships agaisnt lakers with magic, against portland with clyde drexler, agains phoenix with kevin johnson and charles barkely, against sonics with payton and shawn kemp, against the jazz with john stockton and malones. All those team were very good to great teams with a lot of hall of famers. Who did kobe face in the nba finals? Let’s see an average pacers with an old wash up reggie miller, against a mediocre 76ers with only allen iverson, against an inexperience nets who were just happy to b there, agains the wet behind the ears magic who was just trying to survive. The only time the lakers face legitimate competetion in the finals they lost badly quite embarrassingly I might add. Remember the pistons and the celtics in the finals u delusional kobes fans. So who face tougher competitions, u tell me. A jordan led team would never lose a seven game series after leading 3 games to 1, which kobe did. A jordan led team would never get embarrass by losing by 41 points in a decisive in a nba finals. Jordan never looked bewildered and confused on the court. Kobe fans just watch the replay of the nba finals against detroit u will see how confused he looks when he faced the type of defense jordan used to face night in and night out. All that nonsense who would win one on one. U clowns need to stop it. That’s not what basketball is about. In the nba no one can guard another player one on one. That’s the reason team defense is so important. Next time u clowns watch a basketball listen to the announcer talks about weak side help and strong side help and defense rotation,trapping defense,double and tripple team. In an one on one game no one has an advantage. Any player in the nba can score on each other at will no matter what position u match up. For my final words on that jordan and kobe comparrison, let me put it this way: MICHAEL JORDAN IS LIKE JESUS CHRIST AND KOBE JUST WANT TO BE ONE OF HIS DISCIPLES. I am out.

  • Money

    1st let me start by saying this: I am aware that Jordan is the greatest basketball player 2 ever play this game (all things considered) Why? 6 rings, 6 Finals MVP’s, 10 scoring titles, 5 Reg. Season MVP’s, arguably most skilled ever, arguably most clutch ever, etc. Notice none of my supporting reasons included stats. Stats r important, but they can b misleading if used out of context. Stats will have u believe Oscar Robertson is better all-around player than MJ. But this particular debate between Kobe and MJ is a lot closer than some of u realize or do realize but fail 2 admit. So many people like to talk about rules benefitting today’s players. Defensive 3 seconds? C’mon now really? Refs make that call less than twice a game on average. Its so easy 2 get away with this call. All u have 2 do is touch an offensive player and the 3 second count starts over. Hand checking: As Will mentioned earlier, how can u say that it’s harder 4 defenders to be successful in containing players 2day (superstars in particular) and then say Jordan is the clear-cut choice 4 the better defender when he has the privilege of hand checking? Either defenders being at a disadvantage 2day is a myth, or MJ being a much better defender than Kobe is a myth. I wont even get into the fact that today’s players r naturally more athletic than the players of yester-year (which makes up for the fact that hand-checking is legal) FACT: Hand-checking was legal in 02-03 (just not in certain areas on the court) and Kobe averaged 30 ppg-MJ’s career avg. As for the assists argument, MJ played in the triangle offense for 7 years and Kobe is currently playing his 10th season in the triangle. Due to the fact that the triangle is based on balance and ball movement , most people realize that this offense limits a player’s assist total. FACT: MJ and Kobe both had their highest assists avg.’s when they played outside the triangle. FACT: If Kobe ballhogged during the Shaq years-which he didnt-everyone on the Lakers did considering Kobe led the team in assists. It is a very well-known fact that today’s game is dominated by perimeter players rather than big men. It was vice versa during MJ’s era. There were more of hall-of-fame caliber players in MJ’s era but mostly big men. MJ didnt have 2 go one-on-one on both ends with big men on a nightly basis. MJ faced superior competition in terms of teams but inferior competition in terms of individual talent. Best SG’s and SF’s 4rm 91-98: (I didnt mention 84-90 because this is the Bird and Magic era-not MJ’s) Clyde Drexler, a declining Larry Legend, Mitch Richmond, Glen Rice, Chris Mullin, Reggie Miller, Joe Dumars, Penny Hardaway, Grant Hill. Best SG’s and SF’s 2000-2010: Allen Iverson, T-Mac, Vince Carter, DWyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony, LEBRON, an emerging superstar in Kevin Durant, Paul Pierce. The perimeter players of today would dominate-that’s right I said DOMINATE-the perimeter players of the 90’s in an exhibition game. Finally, u must account 4 the fact that Kobe’s scoring average would look a little more impressive if he didnt spend the first 2-3 years keeping the bench from flying up and if he didnt have to share shots with Shaq. U may counter this with “Kobe wouldnt have 3 championships without Shaq either.” I am a firm believer that Kobe will add at least another 3 rings to his name b4 he retires. That’s just how talented the Lakers r and how great of a leader KB has become over the years. Place MJ in Kobe’s shoes: spending the first 8 years of his career (starting in 96 until 04) playing alongside Shaq. Sure MJ wins multiple titles, but how many Finals MVP’s does he win? Little to none. He would play the same role as Kobe: Go-to-guy in the clutch, playmaker off the dribble, defensive stopper, and the 2ND OPTION SCORER! The fact that KB can even flirt with MJ statistically (and mind u Im not even a big fan of stats) while playing as a 2nd option is beyond incredible.

    While it’s no secret that Kobe’s my fav. player, I do know that MJ is the GOAT. Will I be saying the same thing in 15 years? Probably not. Kobe is 31 years old and is playing possibly the best basketball of his career (when healthy). Lebron is only 25 years old and is on pace to match MJ statistically and will probably win multiple rings once Kobe retires. Not 2 mention he may currently be the greatest athlete 2 ever play the game of basketball. (Athlete, not player) Once again please dont attack me with words like: “youngin” “idiot” “kid” because I know MJ is better than Kobe. Im just arguing that the debate is closer than most people want to believe.

  • andy

    For those of u comparin LeBron to MJ in the present, WOW. First off James can’t even be compared to Kobe right now granted the fact that he lacks The Rings. So y don’t we wait til King Kames wins a Title before we even compare him to Kobe let alone the Geatest Player to ever step onto the court…. Thanks :)

  • Pee Zee

    check it out im not good on stats and all that shit but there r fools out there that think kobe is better then mike.There are good debates for both parties but people wanna speak on truth and say mike had more oppurtunity to do what he want cause he didnt play wit shaq…….That is tha most ridiculous bullshit ive ever heard mike would embrace a player like shaq and wouldnt trip on dumpin tha ball down tha middle,kobe is a great player and is tha closest thang to mike,but he will not be better then mikeThis guy on here was sayin that kobe wouldve been greater and have better numbers if shaq wasnt there….again tha most ridiculous shit i ever heard. kobe would only have 1 championship if it wasnt 4 shaq and mike won his without having a dominant big man.i will say kobe has a better 3 point shot then mike but jordans a better post player.Jordans a way better crisp accurate passer then kobe.Due to tha times kobe is more of a flashy ballhandler then mike which makes it look like he can handle the ball better then mike, but actually, they can handle tha ball at tha same level but again, i never looked but,i would bet money……
    that kobe has way more turnovers then mike.but other then that shit i would say mike has a slight edge offensively over kobe.(mike got way more hang time then kobe .Kobes areial manuvers r good but not fuckin wit Mikes arieal moves )i could breAK shit down wit statistics but im high off tha good grapes from oakland cali so i ill end it by sayin Kobes defense compared to mikes is a waste of time.Jordans defense is way better then kobes too and u could believe what u want cause they both will prolly end being tha best players ever 2 play hoop and offensively they are jus about equal dependin what fan u r, but its tha defense is what seperates them and mikes is way better then kobe.Oh yeah kobe never had to play against thugs and hoodlums in tha bad boy detroit pistons and never went into madison square garden 2 play against some convicts and hoolagins that tha knicks had yrs ago with ewing, ant mason, xavier mcdondald,oakley etc…Kobe would be cryin every 2 minutes playin in those times, tha league is way softer and Kobe cry like a bitch every game.

  • jbugz

    Man just watch bulls playoffs especially when they played the knicks!
    You will see plenty of hardcore defense. I want to see a home team go down
    2-0 in playoffs while having homecourt advantage and still win a championship!
    A lot of it is mental, physical as well. Jordan had both.
    Kobe & Lebron are todays greatest players, their will be others as well as the ones before jordan….but there can only be 1 greatest basketball player and that my friends is MJ.

    We also forgot to mention neither Kobe or Lebron has ever played any other professional sport. Mike played baseball lol. That was his first love. He wasn’t even a great basketball player in high school or college. MJ also had a gambling problem…I would too if I was loaded!!

  • RTG

    i feel so shame about this comparison. there is nothing to compare. to compare MJ to KB is like to compare Ferrari FXX to Seat ibiza…..

  • Hank

    MJ is better but it’s not as wide a difference as people make it out to be.


  • mjkobefan

    Does anybody realize that if the super athletic players of today played back when jordan played that they would have the same numbers as jordan. Jordan was the only player of his kind back then and now there are many .Back then players were drafted for specific reason shooter rebounder ect not for now you have to be athletic with these basketball skills .So if you say Jordsan is the best you must sayKobe is right there with him.Back then somebody like lamar odom would have majic numbers.

  • marc

    Jordan did play with your superathletic players at the age of forty and he managed 25 points 6 rebounds and 5 assists till he got injured at the allstarbreak…
    Kobe is playing a great playoff’s at 32.9 points per game, actually its his best playoff series ever.
    And he’s awfully close to Jordan’s average play of 33.4 points per game, really Kobe at his very best is nearly an average Jordan. Not quite still anyway.

  • Thomas Fair

    I will grant you this; Jordan was a great player and I am a Michael Jordan hater. I will acknowledge his skills and abilities. Jordan was “king” when he came into the league from famed North Carolina. He took many shots in his early days and was applauded by media and fans alike. Jordan had and still has an arrogant personality. The rules of the game were altered to capitalize on his star (Jordan Rules). He did not win a title without Scottie Pippen. Michael has had some of the same troubles (gambling and adultery) so he is no saint. Michael Jordan, a great defender? Many times Jordan was playing on the third best player on the team and had the ability to run the passing lanes after Pippen forced a bad pass, he was in backside position to block shots and pick up defensive rebounds because he was not defending the primary scorer. Truth be told Kobe Bryant was not the go to guy with the Lakers early in his career, so his numbers will not be as high. Didn’t Michael maneuver to have his coach fired that allowed Jackson to come to the Bulls? To deal with accolades, those are purely subjective and voted on by “sheep”: MVP Trophies, Kobe should get one from Dirk, Nash and Lebron. Finals MVP’s, at least two more should come his way since Shaq was on the bench when the game was being sealed at the FT line. Kobe has four titles now and is working on a fifth. If titles are the thing, forget the next Jordan and discuss the next Bill Russell (11rings). Lebron James plays bully ball, not basketball and Durrant will pass him in 2012. Those that like Jordan will never exect anyone in his category; they have drank the cool aid (Gatorade). Please continue.

  • marc

    Awards are voted by “sheeps” perfectly fine.Agreed.
    Stats are, without a doubt, objective. Just the interpretation of the material is subjective.
    To determine a players worth his personal stats and his teams are the best indicators. They’re not flawed by opinion, yet.

    Kobe played as much as jordan did in the nba.
    This year Kobe passes Jordan in games played, missed shots, turnovers and it’ll be Some years till he’ll pass Jordan in the made shots etc. .

    Kobe is a great 33% on game winning/clutch shots.
    Kobe dominated scoring in the nba twice, Jordan did it 10 times.
    Kobe wasn’t the best player on any of his championship runs, mj always was, besides the sonics finals series maybe.

    Let Kobe’s finals-stats speak for itself:
    (Kobe overall NBA finals stats from 6 series averaged)

    23 PPG, 5 RPG, 5 APG, 41% FG (267/645).

    I’ll save you MJ’s stats and ill just offer the notion that his worst playoff game was at 22 points.

    Usually we are given the following statements:

    Kobe is clutch, he’s the best scorer the NBA has ever seen, he gives it all any given day, he’s willing his team to win’s and hes at his best when it counts the most.

    Now let’s use our given stats:

    If Kobe’s so clutch ,why 33% made clutch shots?
    If he can score whenever he wants, why doesnt he? (scoring titles?)
    If he’s a better shooter, why does he miss that often?(0.45 fg%)
    If he does it every night, why isn’t he having the best stats he’s capable of
    If he plays best, why are his playoff-stats are so much worse than his season stats?

    I simply dont get from which angle’s those notions are coming from.

    This years Kobe best playoff basketball ever, and with 29.4 ppg he barely scratches Mj’s 33.4 average….
    Kobe will surpass Mj in absolute statistics at one point, i mean he’s got the potential to double MJ’s seasons in the NBA.
    But any percental stats, besides free throw shooting and 3- point shooting,
    Kobe will be nowhere any of the greats.
    And as Kobe is beyond his prime now, his stats will slowly degrade, same as it’ll happen to any player.

    And by the way, 1998 finals happened without Pippen.

  • marc

    Excuse the doublepost, but here’s more on Kobe’s clutch effectiveness:



    While Bryant was fourth in the NBA in game-winners (14) over that period—behind LeBron James, Vince Carter, and Ray Allen—his .250 game-winning shooting percentage was below the league average of .298. That .250 mark was also the second-worst of anyone with at least six game-winning baskets, behind only the SI poll’s second-favorite clutch performer, Chauncey Billups.

  • http://www.jeezem.com Mike

    great players don’t do stuff like this, ie – cheat
    watching the replay, if you think about what Kobe is doing on this play, he clearly puts his leg and foot between Perkins legs, then kicks his foot and leg out to throw him off balance. Plays that are dirty/illegal, that end in injury should be looked at very seriously by the league. It isn’t very good basketball when half the players are injured due to dirty illegal plays.

  • Will

    Props to the Lakers and congrats to Kobe on his 5th ring

  • RTG

    – Bruce Blitz June 21, 2010 4:30pm CT

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGbuEjt-KIc&playnext_from=TL&videos=Gk9CDjr6pGQ (to watch it on youtube).

    First of all folks, let me say that in my opinion this shouldn’t even be needed if you watched Michael Jordan’s career and have seen Kobe’s so far. Jordan was by far more consistently dominant and effective, that it’s really a true insult that this is needed. Thank the media and certain Kobe fans for this breakdown though, I hope you enjoy, this took a lot of time….

    When you combine the playoffs and regular season, Michael Jordan played in 1,251 games, Kobe Bryant has played in 1,219. Let’s see if Kobe has even come close to accomplishing what Michael Jordan accomplished…..

    You can’t deny facts folks, don’t even try….

    Rookie of the Year
    Michael Jordan: Yes
    Kobe Bryant: No

    In his rookie year, Michael Jordan led his team in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals.

    All-Rookie First Team
    Michael Jordan: Yes
    Kobe Bryant: No

    Kobe Bryant was voted to the All-Star team his rookie year for some reason, even though he didn’t make the All-Rookie First Team…

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with 12 or more assists
    Michael Air Jordan: 32
    Kobe Bryant: 19

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with 10 or more assists:
    Michael Air Jordan: 87
    Kobe Bean Bryant: 74

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with 5 or more assists:
    Michael Air Jordan: 663
    Kobe Bean Bryant: 593

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with less than 3 assists:
    Michael Air Jordan: 179
    Kobe Bryant: 261

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with less than 2 assists:
    Michael Air Jordan: 61
    Kobe Bryant: 142

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with 0 assists:
    Michael Air Jordan: 7
    Kobe Bryant: 57

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with at least 15 rebounds:
    Michael Air Jordan: 10
    Kobe Bryant: 5

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    Games with at least 12 rebounds:
    Michael Air Jordan: 66
    Kobe Bryant: 29

    Percentage of points scored on free throws:
    Michael Air Jordan: 22.9%
    Kobe Bryant: 25.1%

    Record in games with 30+ shot attempts
    Michael Air Jordan: 72-57 (.558)
    Kobe Bean Bryant: 46-61 (.368)
    Michael Jordan shot his team to wins, Kobe Bryant shoots his team out of wins.

    Seasons with at least 200 steals:
    Michael Air Jordan: 6
    Kobe Bryant: 0

    Seasons with at least 150 steals:
    Michael Air Jordan: 9
    Kobe Bryant: 2

    Seasons with at least 100 blocks:
    Michael Air Jordan: 2
    Kobe Bryant: 0

    Seasons with at least 75 blocks:
    Michael Air Jordan: 4
    Kobe Bryant: 0

    Defensive Player of the Year awards
    Michael Jordan: 1
    Kobe Bryant: 0

    Michael averaged 35 points per game when he won defensive player of the year. The next closest scorer to win it had 27 ppg. Guards rarely receive Defensive Player of the Year. Think about the level of energy it takes to lead the league in scoring, and be the league’s best defender.

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    40 point or higher games
    MJ: 211
    Kobe: 115

    Regular season & Playoffs combined
    30 point or higher games
    MJ: 671
    Kobe: 415

    Career Player Efficiency Rating
    Michael Jordan: 27.91
    Kobe Bryant: 23.50

    Olympic Gold Medals
    Michael Jordan: 2
    Kobe Bryant: 1

    Michael Jordan is one of three players to win an Olympic gold as both an amateur (1984) and professional (1992). The other players are Patrick Ewing and Chris Mullin, who did it with him.

    All Star Game:
    Jordan’s 40 points in 1988 is still the second most points in an All-Star Game behind Wilt Chamberlain’s 42. Jordan also recorded the only All-Star Game triple double in NBA history in 1997.

    Scoring titles
    Michael Jordan: 10
    Kobe Bryant: 2

    Of course Jordan has the most scoring titles in NBA history. He also led the league in total points his rookie season, but was third in scoring average. He is the only player besides Wilt Chamberlain to score 3,000 points in a season.

    Steals titles
    Michael Jordan: 3
    Kobe Bryant: 0

    Jordan was the first player in NBA history to lead the league in both scoring and steals. He achieved this feat three times. The only other player to do it is Allen Iverson.

    Jordan was the first player in NBA history to record 200 steals and 100 blocks in a season. He performed this feat in back-to-back seasons, making him the only player to achieve it multiple times. Hakeem Olajuwon and Scottie Pippen later achieved 200 steals and 100 blocks in one season.

    Jordan is the fourth player in NBA history to win a scoring title and an NBA championship in the same season, which he did all six times.

    In 1996, Jordan became the second player in NBA history to sweep the MVP awards (regular season, NBA Finals, All-Star Game) after Willis Reed. He would sweep them again in 1998, making him the only player to do it multiple times.

    Michael Jordan led the Chicago Bulls to the best regular season and combined regular season and postseason records in NBA history.

    Michael Jordan scored in double digits in all but one game as a Chicago Bull out of 1,109 total games.

    Michael Jordan game winning shot attempts was 33 out of 58, which is a 56.9% shooting percentage, while Kobe has attempted more game winners, and 82 games’s website has a lest strict criteria, according to the facts, Kobe is a 27% career shooter in game winning situations.

    Michael Jordan has the most known game winning shots of any player in NBA history. He has by far the highest conversion rate in the clutch.

    Kobe Bryant is not among the top 100 players all time in assists per game.
    Michael Jordan is. He’s #80 in assists per game and #35 in assists.

    Michael Jordan is #3 all time in rebounding by a guard (behind Magic Johnson and Oscar Robertson).

    Michael Jordan is #3 all time in steals per game, Kobe is #37 all time in steals per game.
    Michael Jordan is #2 all time in total steals, Kobe Bryant is #28 all time in total steals.

    Michael Jordan is #1 all time in blocks by a guard. Kobe Bryant isn’t even in the top 10 all time blocks by a guard.

    Kobe Bryant is not among the top 10 players all time in points per game.
    Michael Jordan is #1 all time in points per game and #3 in points.

    Seasons over 30 points per game:
    Michael Jordan: 8
    Kobe Bryant: 2

    Seasons over 32 points per game:
    Michael Jordan: 5
    Kobe Bryant: 1

    In NBA history, there are 13 50 point games with under 50% shooting, and Kobe Bryant is responsible for 6 of them.

    Kobe Bryant also has:
    2nd worst known game score for a player scoring 10+ points. (5-21 shooting)
    2nd worst known game score for a player scoring 30+ points. (11-29)
    Worst and 4th worst known game scores for a player scoring 40+ points. (17-47, 12-30)

    Regular season
    Seasons under 50% shooting
    Kobe Bryant: 14
    Michael Jordan: 9

    Seasons under 48% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 14
    Michael Jordan: 5

    Seasons over 50% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 0
    Michael Jordan: 6

    Seasons over 52% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 0
    Michael Jordan: 4

    Regular season
    Games with under 50% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 489
    Kobe Bryant: 623

    Regular season
    Games with under 48% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 458
    Kobe Bryant: 599

    Regular season
    Games with under 46% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 388
    Kobe Bryant: 530

    Regular season
    Games with under 44% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 296
    Kobe Bryant: 452

    Regular season
    Games with under 42% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 234
    Kobe Bryant: 393

    Regular season
    Games with under 40% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 158
    Kobe Bryant: 317

    Regular season
    Games with under 35% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 88
    Kobe Bryant: 192

    Regular season
    Games with under 30% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 41
    Kobe Bryant: 97

    Regular season
    Games with 60% or better shooting
    Michael “Air” Jordan: 173
    Kobe “Bean” Bryant: 123

    Regular season
    Games with 50% or better shooting
    Michael “Air” Jordan: 556
    Kobe “Bean” Bryant: 393

    Regular season
    Games with 20 shots made on 60% or better shooting
    MJ: 16
    Kobe: 3

    Regular season
    Games with 50 points & less than 10 free throw attempts
    MJ: 3
    Kobe: 1

    Regular season
    Games with 40 points and under 50% shooting
    MJ: 29
    Kobe: 43
    Yes, that’s right, almost half of Kobe’s 40 point games involved missing more shots than made ones.

    Regular season
    50 point games with under 50% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 1 of his 31 games (15-31, 48%)
    Kobe Bryant: 6 of his 24 games

    Regular season
    50 point games with under 45% shooting
    Michael Jordan: 0
    Kobe Bryant: 3

    NBA Playoffs
    50 point or higher games
    Kobe: 1
    MJ: 8

    NBA Playoffs
    40 point or higher games
    Kobe: 11
    MJ: 38

    NBA Playoffs
    30 point or higher games
    Kobe: 78
    MJ: 109

    NBA Playoff runs under 50% shooting:
    Kobe: 13 (every year)
    MJ: 8

    NBA Playoff runs over 50% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 0 (never)
    Michael Jordan: 5

    NBA Playoff runs under 48% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 12
    Michael Jordan: 6

    NBA Playoff runs over 48% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 1
    Michael Jordan: 7

    NBA Playoff runs under 46% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 9
    Michael Jordan: 3

    NBA Playoff runs under 44% shooting:
    Kobe Bryant: 6
    Michael Jordan: 2

    NBA Playoff runs over 30ppg:
    Kobe Bryant: 4
    Michael Jordan: 12

    NBA Playoff runs over 32ppg:
    Kobe Bryant: 2
    Michael Jordan: 8

    NBA Playoff runs over 34ppg:
    Kobe Bryant: 0 (never)
    Michael Jordan: 7

    NBA Finals averages for their careers:
    Michael Jordan 33.6ppg 6.0reb 5.9ast 48.0%fg 36.8%3pt ?
    Kobe Bryant 25.3ppg 5.7reb 5.0ast 41.2%fg 31.3%3pt
    Pau Gasol 17.3ppg 10.4reb 3.2ast 1.7blk 52.8%fg
    Scottie Pippen 18.9ppg 8.3reb 5.9ast 40.9%fg 25.9%3pt
    Shaq (as a Laker) 33.6ppg 14.1reb 3.0ast 2.4blk 60.2%fg
    Kobe (with Shaq) 22.1ppg 5.2reb 4.6ast, 1.0blk 41.6%fg

    Kobe has been out performed by teammates in 5 out of his 7 NBA Finals appearances, Michael Jordan was never out performed by a teammate. Michael Jordan never had a teammate average over 20.0ppg in any NBA Finals who shot a higher percentage than him, Kobe’s had a teammate do this 4 times (Gasol doesn’t get enough shot attempts or it would be 7 times).

    Michael Jordan consistently raised his team’s level of play, while Kobe Bryant hinders his team’s level of play by consistently missing so many shots. Michael Jordan carried his team consistently, and on the flip side Kobe Bryant’s team carries him consistently.

    Record as team leader
    Michael Air Jordan: 640-290 (.688)
    Kobe Bean Bryant: 300-224 (.573)

    Postseason as team leader
    Michael Air Jordan: Missed postseason 0 times in 13 seasons
    Kobe Bryant: Missed postseason 1 time in 6 seasons

    NBA Finals Most Valuable Player awards
    Michael Jordan: 6 in 6 tries
    Kobe Bryant: 2 in 7 tries

    As you can see, it would take Kobe 3 full careers to truly eclipse Michael Jordan. He’s so far off he has absolutely no chance to pass Michael Air Jordan whatsoever…

    • Anklesnap

      @RTG, That is amazing, thanks for the stats, we may need a follow up post just to analyze those.


      Doc Anklesnap

      • RTG

        @Anklesnap, yea this guy bruce blitz have some more amazing comparisons with MJ vs larry and wilt … no need to mentioned MJ won them both but with more fight then bryant.

  • http://www.surveymagnet.com Survey Magnet

    We have an interesting debate about this topic going on at the following link:


    Come join the discussion.

  • Kevin

    Interesting posts and comments,well here is my assessment regarding the comparison of Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant first…….to attack Kobe as being “quote”selfish and seeking glory for himself just shows how uniformed some people are on Michael Jordan before his championship days…..I of course was a huge fan of MJ like everyone else but,I have almost every game on VHS that Michael Jordan ever played when he was with the Bulls, and going back over those tapes guess who was the “BIGGEST BALLHOG” in the league at that time???? You guessed it Mr. Michael Jordan, some of you must’ve forgot,MJ wouldnt pas that ball to anyone…. and everyone,his teammates,coaches,fans,and even other teams talked about it and complained about it all the time and why was that?

    It was because he didnt trust his teammates!!!!! Kobe didnt pass the ball for the same reasons and judging by the way that some of his teammates in previous and current years have played…….I would have done the same thing!!!!!!!! So how about that comparison…some of you must have forgotten MJ has had plenty of 18 and 22 point games and didnt always score in the 30’s his whole career. Number 2……MJ was stripped on many occasions by other teams when bringing the ball up the floor I dont need anyone to look up the stats on that……I have it on video……..Number 3 your right Kobe was not givin the time that MJ was alloted to better himself sooner, who knows Kobe may have gotten 7 championships by now,remember coach Dale Harris with the Lakers during an interview…. someone asked him why not let Kobe play more his response?? ” He wanted to bring Kobe “along” ……………what if Doug Collins had said “I want to bring Jordan along??????

    Number 4.. When asked who he thought was the closest thing to him in the NBA MJ himself said and I quote” KOBE BRYANT !!! Number 5.. Name one game where MJ scored 81 points against an opposing team?? “Im not saying that he couldnt”………what I am saying is that …KOBE DID!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Kobe now has 5 titles and poised to get a 6th!!! Kobe got his first title sooner than MJ did a………,granted he had Shaq but the point is Kobe was a major force and contibutor to Laker championships!!!!

    So when comparing Kobe to MJ there are some things that Kobe hasnt been givin credit for with out being “hated on” mostly because people dont want him to succeed MJ!!! Let me conclude with this………..if you take the time to be “objective’ and dont hate and if you look deep into what Kobe Bryant HAAAAAAASSSSS accomplished……….. you WILL FIND that in FACT he has some records…..that MJ has never achieved one being …..most points scored in a single game!!!!! And there is more just dig……. and give it up to MJ he was the best of his generation but Kobe is the best of his period. Two fantastic players one was allowed to grow at a faster pace…….consider it

  • http://twitter.com/Kingdomdad Filip Lizanna

    will this ever be updated? 

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