Originally posted by MoneyManMike
Do you remember the year MJ averaged a triple double through a 14-game stretch? Here is a hint: the year prior he won the Defensive Player of the Year award. Talk about an inferior "total-package." lol...
A triple double through 14 whole games? Oscar Robertson averaged a triple double for an entire season in 1961-62 and missed doing it again in 1963-64 by 7 rebounds. Defensive Player of the Year is a popularity contest; MJ wasn't anything special as a one on one defender.
Let's go to the stats: Jordan averaged 6.2 rebounds a game, Magic averaged 7.2 and the nonjumping Bird grabbed 10.0 per game. MJ is behind both of them in assists; Jordan 5.3, Bird 6.3, Magic 11.0. He couldn't shoot free throws as good as either despite all the practice he got whenever anybody breathed too close to him; MJ .835, Magic .848, Bird .886. His FG pct is well behind Magic's .497 to .520 and a fraction above Larry's .496 but 10% of Bird's shots were 3 pointers while only 7% of MJ's were. Of course, Larry was a much better 3 point shooter: .376 over his career compared to MJ's .327 (Magic wasn't as good at .303 being particularly poor early in his career so I stand corrected there).
So statistically there is no argument that MJ was better than Bird and little evidence he was better than Magic. Of course, he scored more per game but that was a function of how much he shot not of any great accuracy in his shooting. People growing up in the 90's were inundated with the MJ hype and have incorporated it into their mindsets, but there is no way Jordan was the "best ever" even if we omit the great players of the 60's who's numbers dwarf his like the Big O's.
People can yell insults all they want, but the stats don't lie.