Kenny Smith walked off the “Inside the NBA” set in the middle of a TNT broadcast last month in solidarity with protesting players, and the act was well-received by many. Smith’s colleague Charles Barkley did not appreciate it, however.
During an appearance on The Ringer’s “Winging it with Vince Carter” podcast this week, Barkley said he was upset with Smith when he walked off. Barkley had no problem with the act itself, but he thought it was wrong that Smith did not give his colleagues advanced notice.
“I was pi-sed at Kenny. Because I didn’t think he should’ve walked off. He should’ve told us in advance,” Barkley said, via Ryan Gaydos of FOX News. “Because I had just said that it was bogus what the Milwaukee Bucks just did to the Orlando Magic. They didn’t tell them. And then like 30 seconds later, he did the exact same thing.
“I had no problem with him walking off. He should’ve told us so we could’ve prepared. The show was like, ‘Uh-oh.’”
You can see the video of Smith walking off the TNT set here.
The Bucks refused to play their game on Aug. 26 after Jacob Blake was shot by police. Barkley was critical of them for making that decision without informing their opponent, the Magic. He felt what Smith did during the “Inside the NBA” broadcast was similar.
Barkley has never been afraid to speak his mind no matter what the circumstances. We saw another example of that this week when he shared his thoughts on the Breonna Taylor case.
Charles Barkley spoke about the “defund the police” talk and the Breonna Taylor charges during TNT’s pregame show prior to Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals on Thursday night.
Barkley’s opinions ran counter to some of the prevalent narratives about abolishing or defunding the police. Sir Charles thinks that sort of extreme talk is foolish. Instead, he advocates for police and prison reform.
“I hear these fools on TV talking about ‘defund the police’ and things like that. We need police reform and prison reform and things like that. Because you know who ain’t going to defund the cops? White neighborhoods and rich neighborhoods,” Barkley said.
Barkley questioned who would protect black people if there weren’t any police.
“Who are black people supposed to call (when we have crime in our neighborhoods)? Ghostbusters? We need police reform. White people — especially rich, white people — they’re always going to have cops. So we have to stop that ‘defund’ or ‘abolish the cops’ crap.”
Barkley also said the death of Breonna Taylor should not be grouped in the same category as the deaths of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery. Barkley separates the Taylor case because Taylor’s boyfriend shot an officer in the thigh, leading to retaliatory fire.
“We do have to take into account that her boyfriend did shoot at the cops and shot a cop. So even though I’m really sorry that she lost her life, I don’t think that we can just put this in the same situation as George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery. I just don’t believe that,” Barkley said.
A Kentucky grand jury determined the three police officers involved in Taylor’s killing acted in self-defense and were justified in using force. The officers were not charged in Taylor’s death.
Former Louisville police officer Brett Hankison has been charged with wanton endangerment for shots that entered a home next door that had people in it. The results of the grand jury’s findings led to several protests throughout the country and criticism from dissatisfied athletes. Some of the protests became violent, resulting in two police officers being shot.
Charles Barkley and his broom made yet another appearance on TNT.
During TNT’s pregame show on Friday, Barkley predicted the Los Angeles Lakers would sweep the Denver Nuggets in the Western Conference Finals.
The Lakers won Game 1 of the series easily 126-114. After the game, Barkley had his broom ready to go.
Barkley also brought out the broom for the first round of the playoffs. He predicted the Trail Blazers would sweep the Lakers and then used his broom after Game 1 of that series. The Lakers won that series in five, leading Shaq to get some broom revenge.
This time around, Barkley’s sweep prediction looks more likely.
The Lakers are well-rested, while the Nuggets are coming off consecutive 7-game series.
Jayson Tatum threw some shade at Charles Barkley on Friday night over the analyst’s golf swing.
Tatum was a guest on TNT’s postgame show after his Boston Celtics beat the Toronto Raptors 92-87 in Game 7 of their Eastern Conference semifinals series in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Barkley brought up the subject of golf and tried to challenge Tatum.
“Jayson, somebody sent me a couple videos of you down there on the golf course. Give me 5-and-5. Name your price. I’ll fly down once this is over,” Barkley said, challenging Tatum to play.
“Let me know. I’ve seen your golf swing. I like my chances,” Tatum replied.
If you’re unfamiliar with Barkley’s golf swing, you need to watch this.
Barkley was an NBA MVP and 11-time NBA All-Star. He was a great athlete, but you wouldn’t know it from his swing. Tatum better be able to take him on the links.
Charles Barkley had a funny reaction when he thought that he got dissed by Bam Adebayo.
The “Inside the NBA” crew on TNT had their pregame show on Monday ahead of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals series between the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors. They were reading some tweets to the show, including one that came from a Twitter user with the alias “Bam Adobobayo.”
Barkley, who is not on Twitter, mistakenly thought that Miami Heat big man Bam Adebayo sent the tweet. He couldn’t believe it that Adebayo was making a joke at his expense. His reaction was pretty funny.
Don’t worry, Chuck. That was just a random Twitter user.
Adebayo has been a monster this season. He’s broken out with 15.9 points, 10.2 rebounds, 5.1 assists, 1.3 blocks and 1.1 steals per game. He’s averaged 16.6 points and 12.4 rebounds per game in the postseason and is making good on his belief about the Bucks. He is probably too busy working on his game to roast you on Twitter, Chuck.
Charles Barkley shared his response on Thursday night to some of the talk that Steve Nash got the Brooklyn Nets head coaching job due to “white privilege.”
In response to Nash receiving the job despite not having head coaching experience, ESPN commentator Stephen A. Smith said Nash was benefiting from privilege due to his skin color. Barkley said on TNT later in the evening that he was “disappointed” with that sort of talk.
“I was very disappointed with some of the guys on television today talking about ‘white privilege.’ They’re like, ‘this doesn’t happen to black guys.’ I’m like, ‘it happened to Doc Rivers, it happened to Jason Kidd, it happened to Derek Fisher.’ So I was really disappointed,” Barkley said.
“I think when you have a responsibility, especially when you got to talk about something serious like race, you can’t be full of crap. You have to be honest and fair. Steve Nash is a great player and a good dude. But I was so disappointed. I was like, dude, ‘black guys have done this before,'” Barkley continued.
Barkley said that just because attributing Nash’s hiring to race is problematic doesn’t mean there is not an issue of a lack of black head coaches across sports.
“Now, do we need more black coaches in the NBA? Yes. Do we need more black coaches in college football? Yes. Do we need more black coaches in pro football? Yes. But this wasn’t the right time to say it today. Good luck to Steve Nash.”
Shaquille O’Neal felt that a lot of people were overlooked for the job and “it is what it is.”
Nash has previous experience working with Kevin Durant when he was on the Golden State Warriors. His hiring was approved by Durant and Kyrie Irving. The Nets’ front office also obviously wanted to hire Nash otherwise he wouldn’t have been hired. But this is a poor example of white privilege considering numerous black players have gotten head coaching jobs without previous experience. The hiring is likely more attributable to a bias towards former players, and specifically, former star point guards.
The Utah Jazz lost to the Denver Nuggets on Sunday night, and then their coaching got hammered by Charles Barkley afterwards.
The Jazz lost Game 6 of their first-round playoff series with the Nuggets 119-107 to even the series at 3-3 and send it to a Game 7. Jamal Murray put up 50 points for Denver and torched Utah for the third game in a row.
“He’s been great,” Barkley said of Murray. “But that Utah team, that’s ridiculous. That’s ridiculous to let that guy go 1-on-1 every time and just torch people and get 50 points. I don’t like bashing coaches because they have a very difficult job, but that was crap watching that game tonight.
“You got one guy who just kicked your a– with that many points, and you don’t make no adjustments?” Barkley said. “And then with a minute to go in the game they start doubling him when the house was already on fire. You should have done that a quarter ago.”
Shaquille O’Neal agreed and said the Jazz need to make adjustments.
Jazz coach Quin Snyder acknowledged Murray’s outstanding play.
“Other than trapping him, we’re trying to make him hit contested shots, and he’s doing that,” Quin Snyder said of Murray after the game. “He’s playing terrific basketball. We’ve got to do better on him. But he’s been terrific. He’s shooting like 55 percent from three off the dribble. The way he’s playing right now, he’s going to make some shots. There’s other situations that we’ve got to take away. And our discipline defensively has to be there.”
Murray is averaging 47.3 points per game over the last three contests between the teams. His postgame interview on TNT was worth watching as well.
Now we’ll have to see whether Snyder and the Jazz make some adjustments for the deciding Game 7 between the teams on Tuesday.
The Los Angeles Lakers earned a series win on Saturday night, and Charles Barkley earned himself some cash.
The Lakers beat the Portland Trail Blazers 131-122 in Game 5 of their first-round playoff series in Orlando, Fla. LeBron James and Anthony Davis were monsters in the win.
James scored 36 points with 10 rebounds and 10 assists, giving him his 13th 30-point playoff triple-double, according to TNT. Davis scored 43 points on 14/18 shooting and made four of six three-pointers.
Charles Barkley originally predicted on TNT that the Blazers would sweep the Lakers after winning Game 1 of the series. So after the Lakers won Game 2, Shaquille O’Neal snapped Barkley’s sweep broom.
Shaq repeated the stunt again on Saturday night and then challenged Barkley to break a broom for $100,000. He came through.
That was easy money for Barkley, and a smooth path to series victory for the Lakers after dropping the first game of the series.
This was also the Lakers’ first playoff series win since 2012. Better luck next time with your sweep prediction, Chuck. As for the Lakers, they will face the winner of the Thunder-Rockets series next.
Charles Barkley took a funny jab at Paul George on Friday night.
Barkley has been unimpressed by George’s play in the postseason so far and mocked the Los Angeles Clippers forward’s nickname.
When he was with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2018, George was asked about guarding Donovan Mitchell in the playoffs. He shrugged off the assignment as no big deal, saying you haven’t met “Playoff P” yet.
Barkley decided to use that as part of a joke, saying you can’t call yourself “Playoff P” and lose all the time. He even poked fun at himself over his lack of championships, saying they don’t call him “Championship Chuck.”
Nice one for Chuck.
George is off to a sub-par start through three games this postseason. He’s averaging 17.3 points on 29.3 percent shooting. George’s teams have not made it past the first round of the playoffs for three years in a row, though many factors contributed to those outcomes. Still, it gave Barkley a chance to crack a joke, which he’s been doing very well lately.
Charles Barkley is one of several people who have predicted the Portland Trail Blazers will upset the Los Angeles Lakers in the first round of the NBA playoffs. Not surprisingly, Shaq doesn’t want to hear it.
Barkley said before the series that he believed the Blazers were going to sweep the Lakers. He even busted out a broom on the set of TNT’s “Inside the NBA” to make his point. Chuck was feeling pretty good after Portland won Game 1, but L.A. bounced back and dominated the Blazers with a 111-88 win on Thursday night. Shaq celebrated by snapping Barkley’s broom during Friday’s show.
Barkley is sticking to his prediction of the Blazers winning the series, but Shaq made sure to point out that Barkley called for a sweep.
The biggest concern for Portland is that Damian Lillard left Thursday’s game with what looked like a nasty finger injury. The Blazers have the potential to create matchup problems for the Lakers, but they’ll stand almost no chance if Lillard is out or significantly injured.
Tension between Shaq and Barkley during the NBA playoffs is nothing new, of course. Shaq seemed legitimately angry at Chuck during postseason broadcasts last year. The Lakers-Blazers drama is just the latest chapter.