“He like a young ’84 (Michael) Jordan, boy,” Garnett said. “… I’m watching how he coming through the lane. If (Karl-Anthony Towns) wasn’t on his team, he would average thirty-something. You hear what I’m saying to you?”
Paul Pierce felt Garnett was going too far, but the Timberwolves legend stated anyone who disagrees with him isn’t watching what Edwards has been doing on the court. There is no doubt that the two-time All-Star has had a terrific 2023-24 season.
The 22-year-old is averaging 25.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, 5.2 assists, 1.2 steals, and 0.5 blocks per game, and has led the Timberwolves to a 36-16 record. Had it not been for the presence of Karl-Anthony Towns, who is averaging 22.6 points per game, Edwards might well be averaging close to 30.
As for what Jordan was doing in 1984, he had just entered the league that year. As a rookie for the Chicago Bulls, he averaged 28.2 points, 6.5 rebounds, 5.9 assists, 2.4 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game.
Kendrick Perkins Stated Edwards Is Like The 1988-89 Version Of Jordan
Garnett is far from the only former NBA player who has compared Edwards to Jordan, with his former teammate Kendrick Perkins having done it as well. Perkins compared Edwards to Jordan from the 1988-89 season.
“We are talking about a guy that should be the frontrunner of being the face of the league right after LeBron James,” said Kendrick Perkins. “You know what we’re watching is the 1988-89 version of Michael Jordan, that is what we are seeing out of this young man. Playing both ends of the floor…Jimmy Butler couldn’t pull the things out of KAT that Anthony Edwards is doing. Donovan Mitchell couldn’t pull the tenacity out of Rudy Gobert that Anthony Edwards is doing. Ant-Man we need more!”
I would say the comparison to a rookie Jordan was a more fair one than this. In 1988-89, Jordan averaged 32.5 points, 8.0 rebounds, 8.0 assists, 2.9 steals, and 0.8 blocks per game. He was the runner-up for MVP and made the NBA All-Defensive First Team as well.
Anthony Edwards Wants The Michael Jordan Comparisons To Stop
With these comparisons becoming rather commonplace now, the Timberwolves star was asked about them last year. Edwards stated it was time to stop the Jordan comparisons.
“I just want them to stop. He’s the greatest to ever play basketball. And I’m so far from it.” Interestingly, Edwards also believes that Jordan would have no chance of guarding him if they met on the court in today’s era. “Hell nah! No,” said Edwards. “I just don’t think he can guard me. He’s gonna do his thing but it’s gonna be a tough night…”
You can see that unwavering belief he has in his abilities when he says Jordan couldn’t have guarded him. It is one of the reasons why he keeps getting compared to the Bulls icon, even after saying it needs to stop.
Will Edwards ever be as good as Jordan was? Probably not. Jordan is widely regarded as the greatest player of all time, and I don’t see Edwards hitting those heights. Still, he has the potential to go down as one of the greats of the game as long as he stays healthy.
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