x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Like it or not, LeBron James is the world's best basketball player

LeBron James may be egotistical and self-absorbed, but he's also the best basketball player in the world.

Maybe you cannot stand LeBron James, the Miami Heat forward. Maybe you think he is full of himself, delusional about his place in the world, and that he reeks of conceit.

Maybe you are right on all of that, but here is something else you need to be right about:

LeBron James is the best player in basketball.

All this talk about Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls guard, or Amare Stoudemire, the New York Knicks forward, or Dwight Howard, the Orlando Magic centre, or Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers guard, being the NBA's first-half MVP is just silly.

James is the most complete, most intimidating player in the NBA. He is a one-man force of nature, who cannot only take over a game, but make others around him better.

Not convinced? Anybody checked out the Cleveland Cavaliers lately?

When James started for the Cavs, they were one of the elite teams in the league. Last season they finished with the an NBA-best 61 victories.

This year they are basically the same team minus James, and are the worst team in the NBA. James's overall numbers are down slightly with the Heat, but not much when you consider he is playing alongside a pair of fellow superstars in Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh.

His line - 26.1 points, 7.3 rebounds and 7.2 assists per game - is still otherworldly.

No one can force their will on a game like James. No one is better.