While former NBA star Dwyane Wade is enjoying life away from the basketball court, that doesn't mean he can't set the record straight when it comes to who he thinks is the greatest player of all time.
During an appearance on ESPN's First Take, 38-year-old Wade dove into one of the most heated debates in basketball: who's a better player, Michael Jordan or LeBron James?
Instead of picking, Wade had a simple answer for fans: appreciate both players for what they achieved during their respective eras.
"Enjoy whatever left we have of LeBron James, because yes, we are going to see great players come from many years, but we're never going to see another LeBron James," Wade told First Take. "When we talk about the GOAT conversations, it does not matter who is the GOAT. He's one of one."
"We will never see another him, we will never see another Jordan, we will never see another Kareem, and so forth and so on," he continued. "No one will ever win 11 championships like Bill Russell. ….Well, I don't think, maybe one day somebody will get 12."
Wade, of course, won two NBA titles with James during their time on the Miami Heat from 2010 to 2014. But Wade is also from Chicago and has been open about his longtime admiration of Jordan.
By the time he retired in 2003, Jordan had amassed six NBA titles, all with the '90s Bulls. Jordan and the team were recently profiled in the 10-part ESPN docuseries The Last Dance, which introduced a generation of young fans to their historic dynasty — and added new fuel to the GOAT debate.
While the answer to who is the greatest will likely be debated for years to come, James still has time to make his case. The 35-year-old just lead the Los Angeles Lakers to an NBA title earlier this month. Overall, the championship win is James' fourth in his nearly two-decade-long career.
"I always said, once LeBron retires, people are going to forget that we were even teammates," Wade told First Take of James' longevity. "He is going to play that long, and I am going to be retired that long is going to forget that we played together."
While Wade was hesitant to pick a side, NBA legend Hakeem Olajuwon had no problem choosing between James or Jordan back in 2015.
“When people start comparing [James] with Jordan, then that’s not a fair comparison," he told CNBC. "Jordan was a far more superior player in a very tough league, and he was very creative. That’s not taking away anything from LeBron because he is a great player, but it is not a fair comparison because Jordan is a far superior player."
Of course, James would go on to win two more titles (in 2016 and 2020) after Olajuwon's comments — so no telling if that was enough to change his mind.
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