Scottie Pippen usually doesn’t like to compare LeBron James to his former Bulls teammate Michael Jordan. Back in June 2015, he was asked to do it, and he responded by saying that there is no comparison between the two, mostly because he felt as though LeBron was more like him than MJ.
"I was LeBron James before LeBron James," Pippen said. "It’s not even close…I’m no slouch, but when comparing LeBron’s game, I’m usually left out."
Pippen may have a point, but because of his past ties to MJ, he hasn’t been able to avoid the LeBron vs. MJ debate. He’s actually still asked about it pretty often, and while he argued that LeBron wasn’t even on Kobe Bryant’s level yet, much less MJ’s, back in May, it seems he’s coming around to the idea of LeBron surpassing MJ. Pippen was a guest on ESPN First Take this week and was asked where he stands on the LeBron/MJ conversation at this point in time, and rather than downplaying LeBron’s greatness again, he said that he’s slowly inching closer to calling LeBron the G.O.A.T.
"The numbers don’t lie," Pippen said. "He’s right there. He probably will never catch him in terms of MVP, but in terms of statistics, LeBron is right there. And when you look across the board—not just scoring—check his assists, check his rebounds…he’s probably ahead of Jordan."
Stephen A. Smith was absolutely beside himself when Pippen picked LeBron over MJ, and it led to a heated debate that extended well after the First Take cameras stopped rolling. You can watch Pippen make his original point in the clip above and then watch him continue to make his point in the clip below.
This is one debate that is never, ever, ever going to end.