Lakers News: 3 LA Stars Among Top 5 In Anonymous Player GOAT Vote

Lakers News: 3 LA Stars Among Top 5 In Anonymous Player GOAT Vote

A whopping three Los Angeles Lakers past and present number among the five players to receive the most votes as the greatest NBA player in league history, in a fresh anonymous poll of 133 active players conducted by The Athletic’s Sam Amick and Josh Robbins.

Hall of Fame Chicago Bulls shooting guard Michael Jordan led the way with 45.9 percent of all votes. A pair of Lakers, current combo forward LeBron James (42.1 percent of all votes) and Hall of Fame former shooting guard Kobe Bryant (9.8 percent), are next. Golden State Warriors All-NBA point guard Stephen Curry, former All-NBA Lakers point guard Magic Johnson, and L.A. native-turned-Boston Celtics small forward Paul Pierce all earned 0.8 percent of votes, tied for fourth-most.

Amick and Robbins note that, in The Athletic’s 2019 poll, Jordan enjoyed a much bigger edge in GOAT voting over James, with the North Carolina product notching 73 percent of votes to James’ 11.9 percent. Since then, James has won his fourth title with his third NBA team, earning Finals MVP yet again, while becoming the league’s all-time leader in scoring (regular season and combined regular season and playoffs), enjoyed another deep playoff run after winning it all in 2020 when L.A. made the 2023 Western Conference Finals, and made a record-shattering 20th All-Star team this season. James will have the ultimate longevity edge on Jordan, though it may be tough to surmount Jordan’s championship or MVP tally.

It’s curious that Johnson and Bryant both got recognition but two other Lakers legends — Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlin — didn’t make the cut. Abdul-Jabbar had a definitively better career than Bryant, and was the unquestioned best player in the league for practically a decade. He was better than Johnson, too, through at least their first two title runs together.

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