Andreas Xenofontos

Michael Jordan or Shaquille O’Neal?

Project Summary

In this visualization project, I’m exploring the statistics of two of the greatest basketball players of all time. This visualization project will enable us to make meaningful comparisons between these two players, more specifically when it comes to the regular season statistics. I’m looking at the winning percentage of the two players, their field goals, and statistical averages for points, rebounds, assists, blocks, and steals.

The goal of the project was to drive insights on the following question:

“Who was better during the regular seasons from 1993 to 2003, Michael Jordan or Shaquille O’Neal?”


There is a reason I’m only looking at the 10-year span from 1993 to 2003. 1993 is the year when Shaquille O’Neal was drafted into the league while 2003 is the year when Michael Jordan officially retired. I wanted to include only the years they were both in the league. The dataset was clean and ready to explore. For more information about the dataset, click here.

Analysis & Insights

Michal Jordan’s Points to Steals and FG Percentage Analysis

This dashboard provides insights on the points to steal and FG percentage. Jordan had an incredibly high winning percentage of 73%, while the winning percentage when scoring above his average was 57%. From the visualization with the boxplot, we can see that the points are denser in three specific seasons. This is not by accident as Jordan was the runner-up for the MVP award on two occasions and won the championship in two.

Shaquille O’Neal’s Total Points & Rebounds Analysis

This dashboard is exploring Shaq’s total points and total rebounds during the 10-year period. Using a bar chart and box plot, we can get some very interesting insights. The different colors of blue and orange in the bar chart show when he performed above or below his average. The pink color on the boxplot shows that in these specific years, the fact that Shaq did extraordinarily well is directly correlated to either winning the Championship or the MVP award.

Comparison of the Five Most Important Basketball Statistics

This visualization provides a clear comparison of the career averages of the players. Jordan has a higher winning percentage, higher average points per game, higher average assists per game, and higher steals per game. Shaq has a higher average rebound per game & blocks per game. Someone can argue that Jordan was better but it’s a subjective opinion since in the categories that Jordan was better the margins are very close but in the categories that Shaq was better, the margins are much higher.


Both Michael Jordan and Shaquille O’Neal were highly successful basketball players during the 1993 to 2003 time period, and it is difficult to definitively say who was better as it depends on personal opinions and criteria for evaluating a player’s success. Michael Jordan is considered the greatest player, while Shaquille O’Neal is considered the most dominant player. As explored in this project, Michael Jordan and Shaquille O’Neal had impressive careers and their success can be measured in various ways, so the determination of who was a better player between the two over this 10-year span is subjective.



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