Pat Riley compares the careers of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James
Pat Riley he enjoyed a career so long he could rub shoulders Karam Abdul Jabbar (as an opponent then a coach) and LeBron James (As president of the Heat).
Suddenly, with the latter disappearing like an arrow on the former’s record, the former Knicks and Heat backcourt coach definitely has some interesting things to say about the crazy parallel that connects KAJ to LeBron. From one icon to another…
“Kareem has never been a potential player, he’s always been a great player.”At the beginning in AP, Riley builds. “Ok. When you’re a big player from high school, then college, then the pros… There are few players like that. A handful. Two handles at best! »
“When you think about all the points Karam scored and what, what 3-pointers? »
In his 20th season, LeBron James is just 89 points shy of KAJ’s all-time scoring record. With the Lakers taking on the Pacers tonight, then the Pelicans this Saturday, before hosting the Thunder next Tuesday, it looks like the Royals could defy fate and break that record next Thursday against the Bucks (Jabbar’s first team).
A prospect that doesn’t scare the Lakers’ legendary pivot, but is happy to see someone else take over.
“When I broke Wilt Chamberlain’s record in 1984, the year LeBron was born, Wilt, who had a one-sided rivalry with me, worried about all the success I had in the NBA. But I don’t feel that way about LeBron. I want not only to celebrate this achievement, but also to unequivocally praise its qualities. »
If their personal relationship really does stick to usage, the two men still have a lot in common: both spoke out for social justice and against racial inequality, both played two decades in the NBA, and both men wore (or will) Wear the Lakers tunic when you become the best scorer in history!
“We must always recognize those who came before us, those who paved the way” Darwin Ham explains. “When you think about all the points Karam scored and what, what 3-pointers? Think about it, it makes you think, and today’s kids are introduced to a different era. This is a very high level of education in basketball, especially NBA basketball. »
“I hope people will understand Karam’s journey”
Last summer at the meeting in Hawaii, the Lakers welcomed Abdul-Jabbar as lavishly as he broke the new record in 1984! The pivot, now 75, has clearly enjoyed his stay in the tropics…
“This welcome affected him a lot because he was separate, he is separate” Riley continues. “All the players treated him like a patriarch. It’s been a great week for him. He was present, involved in everything we did and gave spontaneous speeches. Even if he is ashamed. But he was very comfortable with our group. »
After arriving on the professional courts near Milwaukee in 1969, after four years of undisputed dominance at UCLA, Lew Alcindor, who became Kareem Abdul-Jabbar after converting to Islam, laid the foundations of modern basketball in the NBA. many ways.
A royal road covering “The Chosen One” soon crowned “King James.”
“Now it’s LeBron’s turn, and that’s to be expected with his unique career and the opportunity to become the all-time leading scorer. The preparation, the trips, the personal chefs, the personal trainers, it’s all been in place since Kareem. I hope people understand Karam’s story and how different he is [de celle de LeBron] », Riley concludes. “When LeBron came out of high school, he was in college for four years. But both were dominant from day one. Both were excellent players from the start. »
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