Pat Riley compares the careers of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and LeBron James
Pat Riley Enjoyed a career of such longevity that he was able to rub shoulders Kareem Abdul Jabbar (as opponent then coach) and LeBron James (as president of the Heat).
Suddenly, with the last named melting like an arrow in the record of the first named, the former slick back coach of the Knicks and the Heat must have interesting things to say, in the crazy parallel that links KAJ to LeBron. From one icon to another…
“Kareem was never a potential, he was always a good player”Riley was originally founded in AP. “It’s obvious. When you’re a good player from high school, then in university, then in the pros… There are few players like that. A handful. Two handles at the best! »
“When you think about all the points that Kareem scored, and what, on what, a 3-point shot? »
In his 20th season, LeBron James is just 89 points shy of KAJ’s all-time record. With the Lakers playing the Pacers tonight, then the Pelicans this Saturday, before hosting the Thunder next Tuesday, it looks like the King might wink at fate, beating this record against the Bucks (Jabbar’s first team ) next Thursday.
A prospect that doesn’t scare the Lakers’ legendary pivot, who on the other hand is glad to see someone else take over.
“When I broke Wilt Chamberlain’s record in 1984, the year LeBron was born, it upset Wilt, who had a one-sided rivalry with me, with all the success I had in the NBA. But I don’t feel anything for LeBron. I not only want to celebrate this success, but I want to praise its qualities. »
If their personal relationship really remains only a courtesy of use, the two men still have a lot in common: they both act for social justice and against racial inequality, they both played twenty seasons in NBA and the two men wore (or will wear) the Lakers tunic when they became the best scorers in history!
“We must always recognize those who came before us, those who paved the way”, Darwin Ham explained. “When you think about all the points that Kareem scored, and what, on what, a 3-point shot? Think about that, it makes you think, and the kids now recognize another era. This is a very high level of education in basketball, especially in NBA basketball. »
“I hope people realize Kareem’s journey”
At their meeting in Hawaii last summer, the Lakers greeted Abdul-Jabbar with joy, just like when he broke his new record in 1984! And the pivot, currently 75, has clearly enjoyed his stay in the tropics…
“He was touched by this welcome because he was separated, he was separated”, Riley continued. “He was treated like a patriarch by all the players. It was a good week for him. He was involved, he participated in everything we did and gave spontaneous speeches. Even if he is shy. But he is very comfortable in our group. »
A tutelary figure in the NBA since he arrived on the pro courts near Milwaukee in 1969, after four years of unchallenged dominance at UCLA, Lew Alcindor, who became Kareem Abdul-Jabbar after his conversion in Islam, laid the foundation of modern basketball in many ways.
A royal road where “The Chosen One” was swallowed up, “King James” was soon crowned.
“Now it’s LeBron’s time, and that’s all to expect, with his unique career and the chance to become the all-time leading scorer. The preparation, the trips, the personal chefs, the personal trainers, all of that has been in place since Kareem. I hope people realize Kareem’s story and how unique it is [de celle de LeBron] », Riley finished. “He was in college for four years when LeBron came out of high school. But they both dominated from day one. They were both great players right from the start. »
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