Will there ever be a team better than the 1992 Dream Team? It’s a question that will never get a definitive answer. It’s also a question that will never stop getting asked. Kobe Bryant, who leads 2012 USA Men’s Basketball team that is filled with players like Lebron James, Kevin Durant, and Blake Griffin, believes that the current Olympic squad would beat the dream team. Michael Jordan, who played alongside Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, says that Kobe’s claim is ridiculous.
When asked about the matchup, Kobe said:
“Well, just from a basketball standpoint, they obviously have a lot more size than we do — you know, with [David] Robinson and [Patrick] Ewing and [Karl] Malone and those guys… But they were also — some of those wing players — were also a lot older, at kind of the end of their careers. We have just a bunch of young racehorses, guys that are eager to compete. So I don’t know… It’d be a tough one, but I think we’d pull it out.”
When Jordan heard about Kobe’s comments, he couldn’t keep himself from laughing.
“For him to compare those two teams is not one of the smarter things he ever could have done… I heard Kobe say we were not athletic… But we were smart. He said we were too old, but I was 29 and in the prime of my career. Pip (Scottie Pippen) was 26 or 27, (Charles) Barkley was 29, Patrick (Ewing) was 29 and Chris Mullin was 29. Almost everybody was still in their twenties…. For him to make that comparison, it’s one of those things where it creates conversation… I guess we’ll never know. I’d like to think that we had 11 Hall of Famers on that team and whenever they get 11 Hall of Famers you call and ask me who had the better Dream Team. Remember now, they learned from us. We didn’t learn from them.”
And Jordan isn’t the only former Dream Team member to chime in. Charles Barkley also commented on Kobe’s claim, saying that he also couldn’t stop laughing at the notion.
“I just started laughing. How old is Kobe Bryant? He’s 34? And he’s calling us old? At the time, we were only like 28, 29. Michael Jordan and me were the same age. We were both 29…. Other than Kobe, LeBron (James) and Kevin Durant, I don’t think anybody else on that team makes our team.”
So who would win? The Dream Team or Team USA 2012?
If you don’t remember the Dream Team, here’s a video from ESPN.