Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
His extraordinary court vision and ability to find the open man before anyone else could...
His ability to involve all his teammates and give them opportunities to succeed...
Though never one of the great all time defenders at his position, he was better than average in this regard.
Five NBA titles (and another four Western Conference titles) with the Lakers at a time when the Eastern Conference otherwise dominated the NBA.
Beautiful Magic synopsis. Simply put, the brother is called "Magic" because whatever he did with the ball was magical. As was noted, he had seemingly omniscient court vision and subsequent ball movement/control. The brother could make ANY play ANY way, period. Personally though, I think we all like Magic because of his personality, his charisma, his sincerely good-sported friendliness. Whose smile is more infecting than Magic's? He was not like Jordan with a mean-mug on the court that would mute a junk yard bull mastiff, no, Johnson clowned with his game.
I think what is also best about Magic is he is the original young phenom,
well before the Kobes and the Lebrons and the Garnetts out there, because Magic came in the league exploding as Rookie of the Year (getting a championship and Finals MVP as a rookie ?!?!
) That says it all..
Of course, you made the excellent point, the one thing lacking in Magic's nearly infinite game was superb defense. That is what made Jordan so stunningly great, he could score AND defend. Now, this is what makes Lebron catch ALL of our attention. Everybody, Magic included, realizes that Lebron has the same (I dare even say better) passing skills that Magic had, the same divinely omniscient court vision. Lebron has the same physical prowess that can put the ball in the hole on almost any drive. Lebron can play ALL five positions, and its just James and Magic that have done this, EVER (please, prove me wrong, I've been scouring the net for this list for 6 months now!). What does Lebron have that Magic never could get? All-star, championship level individual defense. Lebron is the complete package. He has all of Magic's superb offense AND the exhilarating, shut out the hole defense.
What Lebron was missing until this season, was that killer instinct which Magic and Jordan and all the greats had which drove them to multiple championships. Magic may have been a nice guy with a class act and golden smile, but his game was absolute menacing destruction. Jordan? Could kill you with a basketball. Lebron? Was too nice until he got "that look" this season. If we see "that look" again, and Lebron can climb the all-time greats ladder, he just may inevitably reach Magic levels. For now, lets enjoy the uniqueness that was Magic's game, after all, somebody will always be better than you in the long run.