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#pounditWednesday, June 19, 2024

Charles Barkley has more harsh comments about Zion Williamson

Charles Barkley holds a microphone

November 23, 2018; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Turner Sports sportscaster Charles Barkley before The Match: Tiger vs Phil golf match at Shadow Creek Golf Course. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Despite actually being available for the New Orleans Pelicans this season, Zion Williamson still has some work to do to win over Charles Barkley.

During TNT’s coverage of New Orleans’ In-Season Tournament quarterfinal win over the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday, Barkley went viral for his latest round of harsh comments about the Pelicans star Williamson.

“He’s not in shape,” said Barkley of Williamson. “He doesn’t run, he plays the game strictly on talent. He never runs on the fast break, he’s kinda like jogging on offense and defense.

“Somebody has gotta get ahold of him because he’s got so much talent,” Barkley added. “He’s gonna be somewhat successful, he could be special … but he owns that organization already … It’s gotta come down to Zion. He needs to get in shape.”

Barkley also drew a comparison to his own career and how he had a veteran in Moses Malone on the Philadelphia 76ers who told him outright that he was “fat and lazy.”

The Basketball Hall of Famer Barkley probably isn’t wrong here. Williamson is making good progress, playing in 18 out of 22 games for New Orleans this season and averaging a strong 23-6-5 line. But he is doing more of his work in the halfcourt than in transition and is indeed rarely ever seen sprinting up the floor to his full capacity.

The 23-year-old Williamson, who has struggled with weight issues throughout his career and missed all but 29 games over the previous two NBA seasons due to injury, seemed like he was taking his conditioning more seriously this past summer. But Barkley, who is one of Williamson’s biggest and most vocal critics, still is not moved.

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