LeBron James sat down with ESPN’s Chris Broussard to discuss his place among basketball’s all-time greats, his source of inspiration, and Michael Jordan, who he clearly defined as the greatest basketball player of all times.
“I don’t know what it would take for the so-called experts to say that — that’s not what I’m trying to do. My goal is to be the best of all time, and that means maximizing everything I have. And I feel if I can maximize my game, then I can be ranked as if not the greatest, then one of the greatest…. I’m not trying to catch Magic or catch Bird or catch Kobe. I’m into maximizing what I have while I have the opportunity to do it.”
James was asked why he doesn’t have a stronger relationship with Jordan and he wasn’t entirely sure.
“I think it’s just being busy. Obviously, I’m busy. MJ has a lot going on. I don’t know the reasons, but it’s never been sparked. I’ve seen him at times. Of course, I’ve met him a few times. I went to his 50th birthday party at All-Star weekend. I went to his party to show respect and pay homage to the greatest. I had a conversation with him there. Obviously, there were a lot of people there. But I don’t know.”
James also said that Allen Iverson was his favorite player when he played for the Philadelphia 76ers.
“I watch Jordan more than anybody, for sure. But I’ll watch tapes of AI too. I don’t take anything from AI. Well, I do — his will. They say he was six feet, but AI was like 5 foot 10½ inches. Do we even want to say 160? 170? Do we even want to give him that much weight? And he played like a 6-foot 8-inch 2-guard. He was one of the greatest finishers we’ve ever seen. You could never question his heart. Ever. He gave it his all. AI was like my second favorite player growing up, after MJ.”
You can read the entire interview here.