Rick Reilly pointed out that Kobe Bryant seems to think he could beat LeBron James one-on-one, and the numbers show that he's actually right. Synergy Sports Tech's video tracking allows us to look at times where Kobe and LeBron guarded each other on ball in "isolation" situations -- the closest thing you could get to a "one-on-one" matchup in an NBA game.
Over the past six seasons (as far back as the data goes), Kobe has scored 20 points on 27 isolation plays (FGA, trips to the foul line, and TO) when guarded on-ball by LeBron, while LeBron has scored 7 points on 13 isolation plays when guarded by Kobe. If you look at it on a points-per-play basis, Kobe wins, 0.74 to 0.54.
• The pair have guarded each other on-ball in 7 different meetings