ESPN posted an article on Friday highlighting the possibility that Tom Brady may have surpassed Michael Jordan as the greatest athlete of all time, a debate that has been plaguing the Shootout Podcast’s group texts and has dominated the course of discussion over the last week.
Tom Brady is arguably the greatest Quarterback of All Time, but the greatest football player? Shootout Contributor, Richard Gerber, would argue that Jerry Rice is STILL the greatest of all time. Others would say Joe Montana or Terry Bradshaw, Emmitt Smith or Walter Payton or Barry Sanders. I would argue Tony Romo because none of the afore mentioned can be the commentator he is!
However, the debate on the winningest football player of all time has to go to New Englands legend, and perhaps the greatest athletic story of all time can go to him as well. But there will always be much debate on if it were the system, or if it was destiny. The Patriots system has seen QB’s like Jacoby Brissett Matt Cassel, and Brian Hoyer have some success under the Bill Belichick Era in New England. Cassel went 10-5 in Brady’s absence and just missed the playoffs. Regardless Tom is great and is poised to win his 6th championship.
The Debate between LeBron James and Michael Jordan being the GOAT in the NBA isn’t as close as some people think, and that’s no fault of LeBron’s. The same reason Jordan and Brady isn’t a debate, is the same reason why LeBron has a ways to go to close the gap between he and “His Airness”. Neither “The King” nor “Touchdown Tom” have transcended the game. Sure they have been everyday names, been in the driver seat as. their respective sports enjoyed unparalleled success. However they didn’t grow their sport the way Michael Jordan did.
They’re all great champions, they’ve all done things that some people consider amazing. Tom has won 5, looking at 6, Super Bowls, LeBron has taken 2 teams to 7 straight NBA Finals, Jordan went 6-0 in the NBA Finals. They know how to win, they have climbed the All Time leader boards, they’re all GREAT!
What makes you the G.O.A.T. thought? Its taking the game to a whole new level.
Jordan is the only player to take the sport and grow it to an unimaginable height. LeBron’s star is what it is because of the way Jordan made the NBA a Global sport. Michael Jordan is responsible for inspiring an entire generation of Hall of Famers, his greatness has transcended the game as just a player and put him in the spotlight as an owner of an NBA Franchise.
The NFL is huge in America, and perhaps the fans world wide may know who Tom Brady is, however, the NFL product isn’t the NBA’s Global Brand. The man who made the NBA that brand and introduced the NBA to an entire global network is Michael Jordan. As a part of the Dream Team in 1992, Jordan became the player that a global audience flocked to. Michael Jordan inspired players like Dirk, like Manu, like Giannis, and made the NBA the Worlds 2nd most popular sport, behind soccer. The NBA has grown under the time of LeBron here in the states, but has reigned supreme because of what MJ was able to do.
When comparing greatness to greatness, its not championships or individual accolades that need to be brought up. It’s the lasting impact on the game, the legacy left behind. In the decades that follow the NFL will always remember Tom Brady as the greatest QB of all time. We’ll remember LeBron as the most gifted freak athlete of all time, but we will remember Jordan from his game, the iconic dunks, the moments in the sport, the brand that is on every athlete in every sport, and the way the game of basketball reached the global audience it did because of MJ.
Because of those reasons, Michael Jordan is the GOAT of GOATS.