Sunday, July 21, 2024

Fans turn on Cooper Flagg as Michael Jordan vs. LeBron James debate divides the internet

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Generations of greats have come and gone. A new generation of basketball prodigies has also lined up. Everything in the realm of this sport seems to have an expiration date. However, one immortal remains the elusive debate about the GOAT. It takes an astronomical legacy for players to qualify. And despite the sheer greatness the NBA has witnessed, the debate often resides between two icons: Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

You would think that older players would obviously pick MJ since they witnessed his meteoric rise first hand. No one was flying at the time except MJ. Similar to Bron, who I would prefer in the modern era. But it seems that the ‘Last Dance’ revelations repositioned Jordan among younger minds. Recently, Cooper Flagg, a Duke commit and projected number one pick, was asked who is the greatest basketball player to ever play the game.


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“Michael Jordan. “He’s the GOAT” the 6’9″ forward said. In any other scenario, it might not have been such a big deal. However, Flagg said this after she had played a scrimmage against LeBron James at the USA Camp in Las Vegas. It added more gravitas to her claims. It wasn’t the only question she answered. The 17-year-old crowned Kawhi Leonard as the greatest defender of all time and named Seattle Storm legend Sue Bird as the greatest WNBA player of all time.

With their selections open to interpretation and judgment, the NBA fraternity was once again divided.

Cooper Flagg sees support and opposition from NBA fans

Whenever the GOAT debate ignites, fans of LeBron James and Michael Jordan are ready to keep their faith. So when they met with Cooper Flagg, they answered some of the most polarizing questions related to the league. One fan claimed “Bron is the goat but he cooks” Perhaps suggesting that, aside from his GOAT estimates, he answered every question correctly.

Others were not the same. Flagg claimed that the Celtics (85-86) were the best team in NBA history. Some fans disagreed with his claim and doubted his knowledge of the ball. “85-86 Celtics” yes, it’s a failure.” “To be fair, the 1986 Celtics were a collection of legends, led by players like Larry Bird and Robert Parish. In the Finals, they beat their most powerful rivals, Magic Johnson and the Lakers, in just six games. But of course, the 1996 Bulls and 2016 Golden State Warriors can’t be dismissed so easily, either.

But while some admirers only targeted certain selections, one fan had a clever play on words. They labelled the Duke a striker. “Red flag” in reaction to his responses. It’s safe to say this fan disagreed with most of Cooper Flagg’s choices.


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One fan, part of the LeBron James army, was immensely displeased with Flagg choosing Jordan as the GOAT. What’s more, he even seemed to dislike the prospect of The Klaw being the greatest defender of all time. “Saying Michael Jordan is the goat is worse than saying Kawhi is the best defender of all time.” they wrote in X.


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While such a frenzy is to be expected, at the end of the day it’s all about perspective. Cooper Flagg is entitled to his own opinion, as is everyone who chooses his side. These debates, which are constantly evolving and changing, will never have a unanimous answer. Everyone sees the game differently. It makes it challenging to resolve disputes, but it’s also one of the wonderful parts of the game, as generational beings always emerge to make the masses question their choices over and over again.


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