Kobe Bryant and Lebron James have similar qualities. They both are outstanding basketball players with talents that are out of this world. Both players can play just about any position on the court besides center. Neither player went to college, yet they both lived up to their own hype. The two can basically wright their own ticket into the starting lineup of the All-Star game every year.
My question is whose better? One can argue that James, who is six years younger than Bryant, has better numbers at this point of his career than Kobe and the fact that he didn’t have a certain center that goes by the name of Shaq to pass to. Some would defend Kobe and say that he wasn’t inserted into the starting lineup until his third year and still put up good numbers. Who could forget Lebron destroying the Pistons three postseasons ago? That allowed James and his Cavaliers to make their first NBA Finals appearance.
Bryant however has been to the NBA Finals six times, winning four, and is in a great position to win a fifth, which will completely erase the theory of not winning a title without Shaq. By the way Shaq, “How does Kobe’s @$$ taste? “ Critics will argue that Shaq was the main reason for those championships but I beg to differ. Shaq was a major factor in the Laker run but it was Bryant who sealed the deal every time when it counted.
Today, both superstars are the focal point of the respective teams and we can better focus on the players more on an individual note.
Lebron is more of a facilitator and usually gets his teammates involved early in the game before taking on the scoring load. James drives to the basket extremely fast and as an athletic 6’8″, 250 pounder, he is a nightmare for defenders. His superior vision and passing abilities is reminiscent to that of Laker great Magic Johnson. His post up game is a major flaw in his attack. James also tends to fall in love with the jump shot and although his jumper has improved from his earlier years, his deep threat can be a little shaky.
Kobe is like a chameleon! He can easily drop 30 or 40 points in a game and gets teammates involved. He usually lets the game come to him. Although he’s about forty pounds lighter than James; what he lacks in size, he makes up for it with his superior skill set. The degree of difficulty of Bryant’s shot is amazing and there is no range too great for his jump shot. He has developed a potent post up game and this past offseason, Bryant worked on perfecting that post up game with Houston Rockets’ great Hakeem Olajuwon.
On the defensive side no contest. Kobe has nine All-Defensive Team awards and is widely known to defend the top players and usually gets the best of them. Having been on the All-Defensive Team once (In 2009) James defense is a work in progress.
In conclusion, I would have to give the edge to Bryant due to the fact that this guy is a complete assassin on both sides of the ball. Although Lebron is a headache on the offensive side defenders can easily return the favor. James’ youth gives him a great chance to have the better career. But you must get that hardware to really be called King James. Without that Kobe is still Yoda and you are the young apprentice.
By Keith Madyun