Kobe Bryant: Would a Sixth Title Make the Michael Jordan Comparison Accurate?
Kobe vs. Michael Jordan might be less a debate than a debate about having a debate. Most MJ fans don't think the topic is legitimate, as their guy has six NBA Finals MVPs to his name.
Still, if Kobe Bryant is to win an eventual sixth title, that should open up "conversation," at the very least. Bryant certainly has a more diverse skillset. He can shoot from anywhere—in his prime, he could hit fadeaway three-pointers. It is fair to say that Kobe perfected many elements of the game that Michael Jordan simply ignored.
The counter argument is that MJ was so dominant that he didn't need all those extra facets. Though never a long-range shooter, Jordan was always an efficient scorer, notching near a 54 percent field-goal mark in his best season. He was statistically superior to Bryant by almost any measure (PER, win shares, Wins Produced).
Bryant's advocates would rely on how it's a different game today, one that can't quite be dominated in the way Michael Jordan crushed defenses. To defend Kobe here, you need some nuance in explaining the value of his nuance.
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