NBA Hall of Famer Hakeem Olajuwon Offers His Take on the Michael Jordan vs. LeBron James Debate

Hakeem Olajuwon had a spectacular career in the NBA. Olajuwon was one of the best centers in the game during his career, and he dominated in all facets of the game. Looking at his resume, you can see why he’s in the Hall of Fame.

One thing that Olajuwon, Michael Jordan, and LeBron James have in common is that they have won multiple championships. Olajuwon recently gave his thoughts on the Jordan vs. James debate.

Hakeem Olajuwon was called ‘The Dream’ for a reason

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Before Olajuwon entered the NBA, he was a standout player in college. He attended the University of Houston, where he accomplished a lot. It was during his college career when he was nicknamed ‘The Dream.’ His college coach witnessed how effortlessly he would dunk and said it was like a dream, hence the nickname. In 1983, he won the NCAA Tournament Player of the Year award, even though Houston did not win the title. He is the last player to win the award for a team that lost.

The Rockets selected Olajuwon with the first pick in the 1984 NBA draft. When he joined the Rockets, he made an immediate impact on the team. During his rookie season, he averaged 20.6 points, 11.9 rebounds, and 2.68 blocks. Olajuwon was a threat on the defensive and offensive side of the court. He continued to elevate his game throughout his career and establish himself as one of the top players in the game. In 1994 and 1995, he helped the Rockets win back-to-back titles and was named the Finals MVP both years.

Olajuwon spent 17 years playing in Houston, and he spent his final NBA season with the Toronto Raptors. As a member of the Rockets, Olajuwon averaged 22.5 points, 11.4 rebounds, and 3.2 blocks. He finished his career averaging 21.8 points, 11.1 rebounds, and 3.1 blocks per game. 

Olajuwon had a remarkable NBA career

Olajuwon had a memorable career. During his prime, no one could stop him in the paint. When you mention the top centers during the 1980s and early part of the 1990s, Olajuwon was at the top of that list. On offense, Olajuwon had multiple moves he could beat his defender with. He had good footwork and knew how to use multiple moves when he was on the block.

In 1994, he was named the league’s MVP and won the Defensive Player of the Year award. Olajuwon also won the Defensive Player of the Year the previous season in 1993. The Hall of Famer continues to have an impact to this day. Many of the young big men in the league watch highlights of Olajuwon and try to incorporate some of his game into theirs.

Olajuwon gives his take on the LeBron vs. Jordan debate

For the past few years, there has been an ongoing debate between Michael Jordan and LeBron James. James continues to show why he’s a top player in the league and one of the best to play the game. When his career is over, he’ll be in the Hall of Fame in no time. Like James, Jordan is considered one of the best to play. He was a dominant player his entire NBA career and has the awards and titles to show for it. 

There will always be a debate about who’s the best player of all-time, and when people talk about the best players, James and Jordan, are constantly in the conversation. Olajuwon decided to join in on the conversation regarding the Jordan and James debate. He spoke to CNBC regarding the debate. 

“When people start comparing him with Jordan, then that’s not a fair comparison. Jordan was a far more superior player in a very tough league, and he was very creative,” he said. “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.” Olajuwon still gave James high praise but based on his answer; you can tell who he’s going with. The talented big man played in the same era as Jordan and got to experience his dominance firsthand. This might be a debate that continues for many years.