Million Dollar Question: Can there be more than one GOAT?
“You know; I think it’s good in all sports,” Isiah Thomas told me on the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show.
“It seems like basketball is the only sport that’s really capped at one person. In football you had different GOATS; Tom Brady passed Joe Montana; in baseball Barry Bonds was talking about passing Hank Aaron – there was some controversy around just the substance use but, everything else was like okay. In hockey Mario Lemieux is passing [Wayne] Gretzky… so I mean, the only sport where really you’re capped and you can’t be better than is in the NBA [laughs]; and I look at Kareem… and I’m on record saying this, Kareem is the BEST basketball player in terms of GOAT status when you talk about what he’s done off the floor, what he’s done inside the arena; from high school to college to the NBA… I mean, NO ONE compares to his stats, to his winning; his two-plus decades of domination in the sport. And actually if you want to go all the way back to college that would be three decades of domination in the sport. No one has done it better than Kareem and when you look at what LeBron has done these last 17 years in the NBA, that’s – maybe six years from now, people will look back and won’t be as emotional about it; but when you look at what he’s done and I think the players that he’s playing against… You know, it’s funny when you hear them talk because they don’t want to say he’s the greatest because they gotta play against him and compete against him. But they realize that they are playing against something that’s different.”
Two Million Dollar Question: What’s the criteria to become a GOAT in basketball?
“We’ve had criteria of measurement of what the GOAT was,” Thomas tells me.
“And again, in our community what he had to do not only on the floor in terms of a champion, but also off the floor. So, when you look at what Kareem, LeBron, Russell, Joe Louis… all these people that I’m naming, right? They have not only impacted sport but they have impacted society from a stance of uplifting our race and have spoke to racial issues, they have spoke to education; they have spoke to everything that was burdensome in our society on the political side. So there was a political activism that came with being the GOAT. If Muhammad Ali wasn’t speaking for us and wasn’t uplifting us in the community, would we be saying he’s the greatest? I don’t know.”