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It’s time to recognize the real GOAT

They did not keep blocking stats when Bill Russell played, but estimates are he averaged between six to eight blocks per game.

LeBron James missing the playoffs with the Los Angeles Lakers has once again sparked the heated debate between members of Team LeBron and Team MJ about who the greatest of all time is, but it is time we give credit to the real GOAT.

He never gets brought up enough because he played so long ago and most viewers today never saw him, but Bill Russell has to get more respect in the greatest of all time discussion.

If the biggest argument for Jordan is that he has six rings, Russell has 11. And not only does he had 11, but he was the centerpiece of the single greatest dynasty in professional sports history. If the argument for LeBron is his remarkable athleticism and all the numbers and awards, Russell was a five-time MVP, 11-time All-NBA Player and was a tremendous athlete for his era noted for his springy legs that made him quite possibly the greatest rebounder and defensive player in basketball history.

The 15.1 points per game for his career is most definitely what holds Russell out of these GOAT discussions, but there is more to basketball than scoring. He averaged 22.5 rebounds over the course of his career and how knows how many blocks per game he had in a time before that was kept as an official stats. But it is estimated between six to eight blocks per game. Mark Eaton is the recognized career blocks per game leader with 3.5 per game.

Okay, Russell had a lot of other Hall of Famers on his team with him. The year before Russell was drafted they had four future Hall of Famers on the team and finished second in their conference. Two years before they had five future Hall of Famers and finished with a .500 record. The Celtics did not become great until Russell came in. He elevated everybody else as he was a one-man wrecking machine in the low post on both sides of the court.

But Wilt Chamberlain was better in the same era!

Aside from the fact that Wilt Chamberlain never played any defense (sorry, never fouling out of a game is not a good thing for a center, it means the defensive intensity was not there, especially down the stretch of a tough game), Bill Russell owns a 57-37 head-to-head record over Wilt Chamberlain. All of that scoring by Wilt did not amass much success against him. Russell was the answer to Wilt.

He was not flashy. He did not have a sneaker line. He did not appear in commercials when he was 18-years-old and on SportsCenter every single night for the last 15 years. There aren’t many highlight reels in existence with much of his film on it, but that should not mean we should forget about Bill Russell.

What is amazing is that sports fans still widely regard Babe Ruth as the best baseball player ever. He stopped playing nearly a decade before the US entered World War II. Age and eras should not be an excuse for why we ignore him at the mountain top. Bill Russell is the GOAT.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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