March 30, 2010
I'm just kidding, guys. I know who LeBron James is and I know he's very good. Best-in-the-NBA good, in fact.
But could he be the best ever, even if it's just for a single season? John Hollinger thinks it's possible. And he thinks it could happen soon, like, say, this year.
Once again, a hallowed record (at least in my world) is in play for James as we enter the final eight games: He could surpass Michael Jordan's 1987-88 campaign for the greatest single-season PER in the modern era. I have to add the "modern" qualifier because the league didn't keep track of things like blocks and individual turnovers before 1973-74, rendering the PER exercise a guessing game for players from previous eras.
James' current PER of 31.81 is second best in "modern" history, and with eight games left (of which he'll probably play only five or six), he retains an outside shot at breaking Jordan's all-time mark of 31.89. At the very least, he's going to be within hailing distance.
Sure, Hollinger is only talking about PER, a system that he created. But the season LeBron has turned in thus far is phenomenal regardless of what statistics you use to judge him.
For instance, James is leading the league in scoring. He's on pace to be the first forward to average more than eight assists a game, even considering the slow pace era he plays in. He's also the only non-point guard in the top 15 of the Pure Point Rating. Basically, he's awesome at everything.
The article is Insider only, but it is worth whatever money you have to pay to read it. LeBron James is amazing. And he's 25. And he's getting better.