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LeBron/JordanGetty Images

Ah, the Michael Jordan versus [insert modern star here] debate. As much as many (most?) people might like to see it retired, or at least diminished, it's not going away anytime soon.

Case-in-point: Kendrick Perkins and J.R. Smith, Cleveland Cavaliers players fresh off watching LeBron James' gutsy performance in a Game 3 overtime win over the Atlanta Hawks, brought up MJ in the context of their four-time-MVP, two-time-champion teammate.

Perkins, as told to Northeast Ohio Media Group: "The only thing that he's missing is a couple more championships, and then it's a wrap. Right now, we have arguably the best player to ever play the game. I'm just saying, man. I'm not taking anything away from Jordan, but all [James is] missing is titles. A couple of more titles, and that's it."

And Smith, as told to the same publication: "That's one hell of a debate. Honestly, in my opinion, if it's not Jordan, then it's him. It used to be no question. It was a landslide. It was Jordan. Now, you have to consider my boy."

Smith's comments are more measured; if you don't consider James one of the greatest players of all time, you're just a hater.

But Perkins? He's kind of, sort of saying LeBron is better ... if only he had Jordan's six rings.

Some might channel Jason Segel and respond that six rings is THE ONLY ARGUMENT I NEED, KENDRICK!

We prefer a more nuanced view, though nearly every unit of measurement favors MJ as No. 1.

Still, there's time left in LeBron's career, so you never know ...

H/T Northeast Ohio Media Group

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After trailing 2-1 in the series, you could say the Cleveland Cavaliers turned things around against the Chicago Bulls. LeBron James & Co. won three straight, including the clincher: Thursday night's emphatic 94-73 victory in Chicago.

Then someone had a little fun on Wikipedia (to you we-love-LeBron-so-much truthers, we promise it wasn't us):

Bulls Wiki Wikipedia

LeBron James, owner of the Bulls. And while Jerry Reinsdorf (the real owner) isn't going to hand his franchise over anytime soon, we see why this Wikipedia jokester did what he or she did: A James team has eliminated the Bulls from four of the past six postseasons, while the Bulls have never done the same to James.

So yes, in web parlance, they've definitely being "owned."

(The page has since been changed back, by the way.)

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LeBron James, Michael JordanGetty Images

Americans' respect, reverence, love and outright worship of Michael Jordan might never end.

The latest evidence: In a recent survey of 1,471 registered voters conducted from May 7 to May 10, Public Policy Polling found that not only do 77 percent of people find Jordan to be the greatest NBA player of all time, but 34 percent said MJ would beat LeBron James one-on-one ... right now. Only 54 percent said LeBron would win the matchup.

Reminder: Jordan is 52, and retired from basketball 12 years ago after posting decent but very un-MJ-like stats (19.3 player efficiency rating and a pedestrian 6.2 win shares). James is 30, just finished third in NBA MVP voting, posted a 25.9 PER and 10.4 win shares, and scored 38 points and grabbed 12 rebounds in a playoff game.

Now, these being registered voters and therefore 18 and older, it's possible that their age and memories of vintage Jordan are influencing their opinion.

It's also possible that you agree with their assertion -- that MJ was just so good as to be unbeatable.

We don't agree; while we're on board with Jordan being the clear No. 1 all-time, today this matchup wouldn't even be close.

Now it's time for you to decide, then check out who is America's favorite NBA player (you can also read the full report here).

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LeBron James hit quite the big shot Sunday, helping his Cleveland Cavaliers complete a comeback win against the Chicago Bulls to even their series 2-2.

The sports world, as it is wont to do, recognized greatness when it saw it -- none more emphatically than Odell Beckham Jr., the New York Giants wide receiver who is a known fan/friend of James.

video

Absolutely classic.

Other athletes showed their enthusiasm, albeit via written word and not video. There were basketball players ...

Football players ...

Baseball players ...

At least one enthusiast from across the pond ...

But, of course, some haters (or realists, depending on your perspective; a late review did in fact give the Cavaliers time to figure out a play).

No matter what you think, it was some shot.

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On Wednesday we asked fans: Who, among the top four choices, is your pick for 2014-15 NBA MVP?

As of Thursday evening, the results were nearly unanimous: Stephen Curry, the prodigious point guard who has led the Golden State Warriors to be the best team in the NBA, is the one.

Unless you're an Oklahoman:

NBA MVP SportsNation MapESPN

Yes, Texas chose Curry over Houston Rockets star James Harden and, even more surprisingly, Ohio picked Steph over homecoming king LeBron James. But the Sooner State is standing with its own point guard: Russell Westbrook, whose recent triple-double binge has helped keep the Oklahoma City Thunder in playoff position despite the absence of Serge Ibaka and reigning MVP Kevin Durant.

If you haven't yet voted, now it's your turn: Do you stand with Oklahoma, or the rest of America?

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