1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James

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Better player?

1984 Larry Bird
28
49%
2020 Lebron James
29
51%
 
Total votes: 57

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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#21 » by Pelly24 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:40 pm

For me all of these questions about 2020 LeBron pretty much come down to how much worse you think he is than he was at his peak, because no one but MJ and prob. shaq has an argument over that version. The thing is I don't think we've seen a better version of playoff 'Bron besides 2009. 2017-2020 LeBron in the playoffs has basically been the most unstoppable player I've seen on the perimeter.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#22 » by 70sFan » Sun Oct 18, 2020 7:59 pm

Pelly24 wrote:For me all of these questions about 2020 LeBron pretty much come down to how much worse you think he is than he was at his peak, because no one but MJ and prob. shaq has an argument over that version. The thing is I don't think we've seen a better version of playoff 'Bron besides 2009. 2017-2020 LeBron in the playoffs has basically been the most unstoppable player I've seen on the perimeter.

That's not true, I see Wilt, Russell, Kareem, Hakeem and Duncan having strong arguments as well.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#23 » by 1993Playoffs » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:20 pm

Off topic but I think it’s pretty awesome that near 36 year old lebron is comparable and arguably better than some of these players peak seasons.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#24 » by JordansBulls » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:27 pm

I’d say Bird for the fact he won league and finals mvp and didn’t get opportunity to have a 5 month break during same season. Also Bird was clearly best in the season and playoffs while it could be argued AD was as good or better than Lebron at least statistically for the most part.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#25 » by nolang1 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 8:39 pm

Jiminy Glick wrote:
ReddoverKobe wrote:
Jiminy Glick wrote:
Yes people are shooting more 3's now. That is fine and it can be a good strategy. The league is extremely soft because hand-checking was banned.


Hand checking might be the most overrated argument for anything ever in basketball. I feel like its supposed to be some trump card to promote that game back in the day, when in fact its kind of laughable.


You couldn't be more wrong. So you are not in favor of bring back hand-checking? Then you are not in favor of physical basketball and actual defense. Posts like these really sadden me because the game has been destroyed and people need to wake up.



No, the point is more that players still hand-check today (if you're saying that every single time a defender makes contact with an offensive player, it's a foul, you're simply not even trying to make a serious argument) and waiting until a player gets 18 feet from the hoop and then hand-checking them when the other 8 players are bunched around the basket is a totally different proposition from having to get out on someone who can pull up from 28 feet out and has a clear running start to the basket with shooters spacing the floor around them if they get past the original hand-checking attempt.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#26 » by Jiminy Glick » Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:04 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Jiminy Glick wrote:
ReddoverKobe wrote:
Hand checking might be the most overrated argument for anything ever in basketball. I feel like its supposed to be some trump card to promote that game back in the day, when in fact its kind of laughable.


You couldn't be more wrong. So you are not in favor of bring back hand-checking? Then you are not in favor of physical basketball and actual defense. Posts like these really sadden me because the game has been destroyed and people need to wake up.



No, the point is more that players still hand-check today (if you're saying that every single time a defender makes contact with an offensive player, it's a foul, you're simply not even trying to make a serious argument) and waiting until a player gets 18 feet from the hoop and then hand-checking them when the other 8 players are bunched around the basket is a totally different proposition from having to get out on someone who can pull up from 28 feet out and has a clear running start to the basket with shooters spacing the floor around them if they get past the original hand-checking attempt.


There is no hand-checking out on the perimeter. I never said whenever there is contact it is a foul. I am not going to have an argument on whether or not the league is extremely soft today. It clearly is.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#27 » by ReddoverKobe » Sun Oct 18, 2020 9:37 pm

Jiminy Glick wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
Jiminy Glick wrote:
You couldn't be more wrong. So you are not in favor of bring back hand-checking? Then you are not in favor of physical basketball and actual defense. Posts like these really sadden me because the game has been destroyed and people need to wake up.



No, the point is more that players still hand-check today (if you're saying that every single time a defender makes contact with an offensive player, it's a foul, you're simply not even trying to make a serious argument) and waiting until a player gets 18 feet from the hoop and then hand-checking them when the other 8 players are bunched around the basket is a totally different proposition from having to get out on someone who can pull up from 28 feet out and has a clear running start to the basket with shooters spacing the floor around them if they get past the original hand-checking attempt.


There is no hand-checking out on the perimeter. I never said whenever there is contact it is a foul. I am not going to have an argument on whether or not the league is extremely soft today. It clearly is.


Fighting does not make the game tough. Thats the garbage they took out of the league and it is much better.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#28 » by nolang1 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:09 pm

Jiminy Glick wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
Jiminy Glick wrote:
You couldn't be more wrong. So you are not in favor of bring back hand-checking? Then you are not in favor of physical basketball and actual defense. Posts like these really sadden me because the game has been destroyed and people need to wake up.



No, the point is more that players still hand-check today (if you're saying that every single time a defender makes contact with an offensive player, it's a foul, you're simply not even trying to make a serious argument) and waiting until a player gets 18 feet from the hoop and then hand-checking them when the other 8 players are bunched around the basket is a totally different proposition from having to get out on someone who can pull up from 28 feet out and has a clear running start to the basket with shooters spacing the floor around them if they get past the original hand-checking attempt.


There is no hand-checking out on the perimeter. I never said whenever there is contact it is a foul. I am not going to have an argument on whether or not the league is extremely soft today. It clearly is.


Your idea of 'softness' is completely divorced from the idea of actually playing good defense. Today's players have to cover like 50% more ground each possession than before, and the vast majority of the 'hard' defensive plays from the '80s that people cite are from playoff games/marquee regular-season matchups and mostly constitute players taking cheap shots after getting beaten on defense - still fouls (aka bad defense) but just didn't warrant flagrant fouls or suspensions.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#29 » by nolang1 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:22 pm

Cavsfansince84 wrote:I think we are naturally going to have some skepticism regarding 2020 LeBron due to the fact that he was 35 but the thing that's probably being underestimated(really two or three things) is how much the 5-6 month off season plus 3 month layoff/shortened season may have helped him on top of the millions he's spent taking care of himself over the last 10-15 years. LeBron's 35 is probably closer to Bird's 28-30 given how many injuries Bird had over his career. It's probably even equivalent to LeBron's 2016 season endurance wise given the career lows in rs and playoff mpg(34.6/36.3) on top of everything else. It was by far the most rested LeBron we have seen since his rookie year which also explains his resurgence on defense.


It's a slippery slope how much 'taking care of oneself' counts for or against someone. Bill Russell was lifting weights and doing cardio in a time where most players were having a beer and a cig at halftime, so maybe if everyone was as focused on being great as he was he wouldn't have won so many championships?

If LeBron (or any other contemporary player) got into a bar fight during the conference finals and was a substantially worse player for the rest of the playoffs and cost his team a championship (like Bird did in '85) that would forever be evidence of how he's not a real competitor and doesn't respect the game and blah blah blah. At that point you can start saying that Shaq if he had been 100% serious about his conditioning or David Thompson without the cocaine should be in the GOAT arguments.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#30 » by Cavsfansince84 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:36 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Cavsfansince84 wrote:I think we are naturally going to have some skepticism regarding 2020 LeBron due to the fact that he was 35 but the thing that's probably being underestimated(really two or three things) is how much the 5-6 month off season plus 3 month layoff/shortened season may have helped him on top of the millions he's spent taking care of himself over the last 10-15 years. LeBron's 35 is probably closer to Bird's 28-30 given how many injuries Bird had over his career. It's probably even equivalent to LeBron's 2016 season endurance wise given the career lows in rs and playoff mpg(34.6/36.3) on top of everything else. It was by far the most rested LeBron we have seen since his rookie year which also explains his resurgence on defense.


It's a slippery slope how much 'taking care of oneself' counts for or against someone. Bill Russell was lifting weights and doing cardio in a time where most players were having a beer and a cig at halftime, so maybe if everyone was as focused on being great as he was he wouldn't have won so many championships?

If LeBron (or any other contemporary player) got into a bar fight during the conference finals and was a substantially worse player for the rest of the playoffs and cost his team a championship (like Bird did in '85) that would forever be evidence of how he's not a real competitor and doesn't respect the game and blah blah blah. At that point you can start saying that Shaq if he had been 100% serious about his conditioning or David Thompson without the cocaine should be in the GOAT arguments.


That's not really what I'm saying though. What I'm saying is that there's a natural assumption that LeBron must be worse of an overall player at 35 than he was say at 33. What I'm doing is giving a rationale as to how he could quite possibly be better in 2020 than he was in 2018 or as good or better than Bird was in 1984 despite being fairly old by bb standards.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#31 » by nolang1 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:48 pm

Cavsfansince84 wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
Cavsfansince84 wrote:I think we are naturally going to have some skepticism regarding 2020 LeBron due to the fact that he was 35 but the thing that's probably being underestimated(really two or three things) is how much the 5-6 month off season plus 3 month layoff/shortened season may have helped him on top of the millions he's spent taking care of himself over the last 10-15 years. LeBron's 35 is probably closer to Bird's 28-30 given how many injuries Bird had over his career. It's probably even equivalent to LeBron's 2016 season endurance wise given the career lows in rs and playoff mpg(34.6/36.3) on top of everything else. It was by far the most rested LeBron we have seen since his rookie year which also explains his resurgence on defense.


It's a slippery slope how much 'taking care of oneself' counts for or against someone. Bill Russell was lifting weights and doing cardio in a time where most players were having a beer and a cig at halftime, so maybe if everyone was as focused on being great as he was he wouldn't have won so many championships?

If LeBron (or any other contemporary player) got into a bar fight during the conference finals and was a substantially worse player for the rest of the playoffs and cost his team a championship (like Bird did in '85) that would forever be evidence of how he's not a real competitor and doesn't respect the game and blah blah blah. At that point you can start saying that Shaq if he had been 100% serious about his conditioning or David Thompson without the cocaine should be in the GOAT arguments.


That's no really what I'm saying though. What I'm saying is that there's a natural assumption that LeBron must be worse of an overall player at 35 than he was say at 33. What I'm doing is giving a rationale as to how he could quite possibly be better in 2020 than he was in 2018 or as good or better than Bird was in 1984.


Well I think it's fairly obvious he's a better player than Bird was in 1984; if you swap the two I really doubt the 2020 Lakers would win the championship. Like what could you say Bird was better at other than shooting, and even then he was attempting threes at such a low volume. I'm just saying if you're citing the 'he took better care of himself than Bird' angle as the predominant reason his 2020 season was better, then what's the difference between that and saying whatever super-talented bust of your choice could've had a better career than Bird if they'd just tried harder?
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#32 » by DQuinn1575 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 10:50 pm

The Master wrote:
SNPA wrote:Just a note, LeBron has never been a better rebounder than Bird at any point.

LeBron this year in playoffs had higher TRB% and rebounds/100 possessions than Bird at any point of his career in postseason. I don't think it is relevant though.
OdomFan wrote:2020 Lebron (and any other year of him) is only better at driving and scoring under the rim than Larry Bird. Bird shooting ability is far better anywhere else. The numbers point this out, and so does simply watching both men play throughout the respective seasons the topic is about.
And thanks to being 'only better at driving and scoring under the rim' - LeBron was stastically better scorer in their respective seasons as well as in their careers. I thought that information will follow-up your post well. ;)

Bird didn’t play against 6-6 centers. And he did outrebound LBJ in the regular season and pretty much his whole career.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#33 » by DQuinn1575 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:04 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Cavsfansince84 wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
It's a slippery slope how much 'taking care of oneself' counts for or against someone. Bill Russell was lifting weights and doing cardio in a time where most players were having a beer and a cig at halftime, so maybe if everyone was as focused on being great as he was he wouldn't have won so many championships?

If LeBron (or any other contemporary player) got into a bar fight during the conference finals and was a substantially worse player for the rest of the playoffs and cost his team a championship (like Bird did in '85) that would forever be evidence of how he's not a real competitor and doesn't respect the game and blah blah blah. At that point you can start saying that Shaq if he had been 100% serious about his conditioning or David Thompson without the cocaine should be in the GOAT arguments.


That's no really what I'm saying though. What I'm saying is that there's a natural assumption that LeBron must be worse of an overall player at 35 than he was say at 33. What I'm doing is giving a rationale as to how he could quite possibly be better in 2020 than he was in 2018 or as good or better than Bird was in 1984.


Well I think it's fairly obvious he's a better player than Bird was in 1984; if you swap the two I really doubt the 2020 Lakers would win the championship. Like what could you say Bird was better at other than shooting, and even then he was attempting threes at such a low volume. I'm just saying if you're citing the 'he took better care of himself than Bird' angle as the predominant reason his 2020 season was better, then what's the difference between that and saying whatever super-talented bust of your choice could've had a better career than Bird if they'd just tried harder?

If you swap the two each team still winds the title.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#34 » by Jiminy Glick » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:05 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Jiminy Glick wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
No, the point is more that players still hand-check today (if you're saying that every single time a defender makes contact with an offensive player, it's a foul, you're simply not even trying to make a serious argument) and waiting until a player gets 18 feet from the hoop and then hand-checking them when the other 8 players are bunched around the basket is a totally different proposition from having to get out on someone who can pull up from 28 feet out and has a clear running start to the basket with shooters spacing the floor around them if they get past the original hand-checking attempt.


There is no hand-checking out on the perimeter. I never said whenever there is contact it is a foul. I am not going to have an argument on whether or not the league is extremely soft today. It clearly is.


Your idea of 'softness' is completely divorced from the idea of actually playing good defense. Today's players have to cover like 50% more ground each possession than before, and the vast majority of the 'hard' defensive plays from the '80s that people cite are from playoff games/marquee regular-season matchups and mostly constitute players taking cheap shots after getting beaten on defense - still fouls (aka bad defense) but just didn't warrant flagrant fouls or suspensions.


If you can't hand-check it is not the best defense that can be played. That's really all there is to it.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#35 » by SNPA » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:06 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Well I think it's fairly obvious he's a better player than Bird was in 1984; if you swap the two I really doubt the 2020 Lakers would win the championship.


Yeah, a Bird/AD team isn’t championship material. :o
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#36 » by Cavsfansince84 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:16 pm

nolang1 wrote:
Well I think it's fairly obvious he's a better player than Bird was in 1984; if you swap the two I really doubt the 2020 Lakers would win the championship. Like what could you say Bird was better at other than shooting, and even then he was attempting threes at such a low volume. I'm just saying if you're citing the 'he took better care of himself than Bird' angle as the predominant reason his 2020 season was better, then what's the difference between that and saying whatever super-talented bust of your choice could've had a better career than Bird if they'd just tried harder?


I don't think its that obvious. Bird had an atg level playoff run that year just as LeBron did this year and without a teammate who was widely seen as a top 15-20 player in the league. I'm not even what to make of the rest of what you said tbh. Better care/more rest translates to why LeBron's defense may have been as good as some metrics make it out to be and speak to his ability to impose his game on offense despite his age. It's just a way of putting into perspective how his perception as a better two play than last year or probably in 2018 could be true.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#37 » by nolang1 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:27 pm

Cavsfansince84 wrote:
nolang1 wrote:
Well I think it's fairly obvious he's a better player than Bird was in 1984; if you swap the two I really doubt the 2020 Lakers would win the championship. Like what could you say Bird was better at other than shooting, and even then he was attempting threes at such a low volume. I'm just saying if you're citing the 'he took better care of himself than Bird' angle as the predominant reason his 2020 season was better, then what's the difference between that and saying whatever super-talented bust of your choice could've had a better career than Bird if they'd just tried harder?


I don't think its that obvious. Bird had an atg level playoff run that year just as LeBron did this year and without a teammate who was widely seen as a top 15-20 player in the league. I'm not even what to make of the rest of what you said tbh. Better care/more rest translates to why LeBron's defense may have been as good as some metrics make it out to be and speak to his ability to impose his game on offense despite his age. It's just a way of putting into perspective how his perception as a better two play than last year or probably in 2018 could be true.


LeBron would've been the best finisher in the league, which Bird obviously wasn't. Lebron would've been the most versatile defender in the league, which Bird obviously wasn't (if 1984 Larry Bird was the Lakers' best option to guard Jamal Murray, they wouldn't have gotten to the Finals). It's safe to say LeBron would've been at least at the same level as a passer given he led the league in assists this year. So again, you're left saying Bird was a better shooter when he took less than 2 threes per game in the first place.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#38 » by Cavsfansince84 » Sun Oct 18, 2020 11:59 pm

nolang1 wrote:
LeBron would've been the best finisher in the league, which Bird obviously wasn't. Lebron would've been the most versatile defender in the league, which Bird obviously wasn't (if 1984 Larry Bird was the Lakers' best option to guard Jamal Murray, they wouldn't have gotten to the Finals). It's safe to say LeBron would've been at least at the same level as a passer given he led the league in assists this year. So again, you're left saying Bird was a better shooter when he took less than 2 threes per game in the first place.


There's more to shooting than just 3's. Which isn't to say I am arguing Bird was better but just pointing that out.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#39 » by 2klegend » Mon Oct 19, 2020 1:01 am

'84 Bird is special and in his physical prime. As someone already mentioned, '2020 Lebron had many favorable conditions to put up number but most importantly, the way the game is playing now, stat has become less meaningful. So you have to watch both players to really compare their dominance.
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Re: 1984 Larry Bird vs 2020 Lebron James 

Post#40 » by Leslie Forman » Mon Oct 19, 2020 3:58 am

Jiminy Glick wrote:There is no hand-checking out on the perimeter. I never said whenever there is contact it is a foul. I am not going to have an argument on whether or not the league is extremely soft today. It clearly is.

The "BuT HanDCheCkInG!!!!!!!!" argument is always a dumb one, but it's a particularly dumb one here because Larry Bird wasn't exactly trying to Shammgod people off the dribble at the three-point line. The average small forward back then was in the post more than Joel Embiid. The concept of stretching defenses was nonexistent. Handchecking literally doesn't matter here.

And imagine if handchecking was your defensive strategy against LeBron today. Putting your defender close enough to do that out past the three-point line? They'd be freaking toast. What an idiotic idea.

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