They might be compared with each other often due to their superb basketball skills and vast professional basketball achievements, but Lebron James is not shy to admit that Michel Jordan is his ultimate basketball idol.
James recalled that meeting Jordan for the first time at 16 years old in 2001 is like seeing God.
“It was godly,” James said. “I’ve said that over and over before, but it was like meeting God
for the first time. That’s what I felt like as a 16-year-old kid when I met MJ.” Jordan was 38 then, preparing for an NBA comeback with the Washington Wizards and imparting advice to James, who was still in high school.
James is now weeks away from his 34th birthday and 460 points behind Jordan for No. 4 on the
NBA career scoring list. The high school kid who wore No. 23 inspired by his basketball idol
now has a résumé in the sport rivaled by few to ever lace up a pair of sneakers. “Any time I’m even mentioned with the greats that played this game and guys before me who laid
the path, laid the grounds in this work and allowed me to be in this position, it’s always
humbling and gratifying for my city,” James said, referring to his hometown of Akron, Ohio.
“Just knowing where I come from, some of you guys know where I come from that’s been there,
and some of you guys haven’t, but where I come from, there’s not many of us. It’s very limited.
It’s very, very limited inspirations. Very limited resources. Very limited everything.
So for me to be in this position where I’m at today, it’s just a blessing.”