Plenty of folks have Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James as one of the five best NBA players of all time, but Anthony Edwards isn’t one of them.
The Minnesota Timberwolves rising star was recently asked to give his list, and he included two Lakers legends, Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson and Kevin Durant rounded out his selections.
Anthony Edwards “ Top 5 “
“ & of course who? “
Y’all know who his goat is?🙂 pic.twitter.com/ILbOJg20Hu
— 𝟑𝟓 ✰ (@Hatedzs) August 20, 2023
“M.J., Kobe, Shaq — that’s three — Allen Iverson and, of course, K.D. for me,” he said.
Edwards named Jordan first, which is a bit unsurprising, then named Bryant and O’Neal next.
The former Lakers duo helped Los Angeles achieve a three-peat from 2000 to 2002. Interestingly, “Ant-Man” was unable to appreciate that run at the time, as he was born in 2001. Yet, the fact that he acknowledges the greatness of the two Lakers icons is a testament to their legacies.
His decision to name Iverson and Durant but not James might raise some eyebrows. To be fair, those two players have certainly been influential, particularly to the league’s younger players. But most NBA fans would probably take James over both Iverson and Durant.
It remains to be seen if James will catch wind of the omission and try to further assert his dominance on Edwards. The players have met a total of eight times, and the four-time MVP has won six of matchups.
In those eight matchups, James has averaged 24.3 points, 9.1 rebounds and 6.3 assists per game. On the other hand, the 22-year-old has put up 20.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.3 assists per contest in their head-to-head battles.
It’s unclear how Edwards really thinks of James because in the past, he included the 19-time All-Star in his all-time starting five alongside himself, Iverson, Durant and O’Neal.
— House of Highlights (@HoHighlights) June 3, 2022
As for James, he’s probably rooting for Edwards now because the shooting guard is among those who will lead Team USA in the upcoming FIBA Basketball World Cup. Of course, winning the event would be a source of pride for the nation.
But it may also have implications for James. Team USA finishing as one of of the top two squads from the Americas would qualify the nation for the Olympics in 2024, which might be the last chance for the 38-year-old to represent his country in international competition.