x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

LeBron James has earned his nickname of 'The King'

Right now, at this very moment, LeBron James is the best player in basketball.

Right now, at this very moment, LeBron James is the best player in basketball.

Derrick Rose can have his regular-season Most Valuable Player award. It is not that he was not deserving, but James already has two of those. Now James is in position to become the MVP of the NBA finals for the first time.

Anything less will bring out critics lamenting his lack of greatness. Which is sheer poppycock.

If you were an NBA executive and could build your team around any one player in the world, it certainly would be James, who is still only 26 years old.

There is no else like him in the game today, and there never has been. He is 6ft 8ins and 250 pounds (113kg) of rock-solid muscle. He is explosive. He drives to the basket and simply sheds defenders, a blend of athleticism and irresistible force the NBA has never known.

After James led the Miami Heat past the Chicago Bulls and into the finals, the former Bulls great Scottie Pippen said that Michael Jordan "is probably the greatest scorer to play the game" but James "may be the greatest player to ever play the game".

James is a different kind of athlete, unique in his own way. He can do everything on the basketball court, including play defence. He shut down Rose. He led his team from 12 points down in the last four minutes of the final game against the Bulls. He took control late in games. Just like the game's best player should.

sports@thenational.ae