Who Needs a Championship More: Tiger Woods or LeBron James?

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Who needs a championship more? Here's a thought experiment: Imagine if LeBron had started his career by winning eight titles in his first 10 years. Then, out of the blue, he tears his ACL, admits to cheating regularly on longtime girlfriend Savannah Brinson (also the mother of his children), and misses virtually all of the next two seasons due to injury. Bill Russell's record of 11 titles sits tantalizingly close, as does the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) label. But the King just can't seem to win Title No. 9.

You tell me. Would that LeBron need another title more than our LeBron needs his first?

I would say yes, and I would also say that a Tiger win at the U.S. Open would mean more for sports than a LeBron NBA title. King James is the best player of his generation, but no one in their right mind puts him in the same class as Jordan, Russell, Bird, Magic et al. If you were ranking the 10 greatest basketball players of all time, LeBron would not make the list. Don't take my word for it—just ask Jason Siegel.

Meanwhile, Tiger is attempting to scale the Everest of his sport (Nicklaus' 18 majors) and supplant the Golden Bear as golf's GOAT. Five years ago, Tiger's ascension to the top of golf history was a foregone conclusion. Now he's seeking just one major—any major—to kick-start his run again.

It's safe to say LeBron will never challenge Jordan or Russell in the "overall greatness" department. But Tiger is already locked in a struggle with the greatest champion in the history of his sport. And that means more.

Care to break the tie, Patrick?

–Jake

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Sports Roundtable

Patrick Hruby, Jake Simpson, and Hampton Stevens 

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