Tim Boyle/AP

Shaquille O'Neal says he would take Michael Jordan over LeBron James, but Julius Erving deserves to be in the conversation. 

By SI Wire
August 18, 2015

The Big Aristotle has spoken.

While on a promotional tour in China, four-time NBA champion Shaquille O'Neal was asked to weigh in on today's hottest basketball debate: Who would win in one-on-one, Michael Jordan or LeBron James?

Jordan re-ignited the conversation in the second week of August when he said there was “no question” he could beat LeBron in his prime. James came back a few days later saying he would take himself over the six-time champion.

O'Neal was a teammate of James's in Cleveland, and also battled an in-his-prime Jordan in the ‘90s. He chose His Airness over the King, according to Yahoo.

“I think you have to go with a young Jordan every time,” O'Neal said.

But O'Neal didn't stop there. He brought up another legend who could maybe defeat both: Julius Erving.

“I've seen young Mike and young LeBron, and I must say Dr. J is still my favorite player," O'Neal said. "A lot of people today don't even mention his name but to me I still think he was the best. But these are questions that we'll never know the answer to.”

And of course, it wouldn't be Shaq if he didn't take the question somewhere no one else was thinking.

“It's a bit like if I met Bruce Lee in an alleyway. Who would win? You'll never know. Some people say well Bruce would kick Shaq's ass. Some people say well Shaq is two times bigger than Bruce Lee. It's a good question, a good conversation. But we'll never know.”

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