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Friday, June 5, 2020

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley wants NBA to intervene in Anthony Davis, Lakers situation

Charles Barkley is seeing what’s going on with Anthony Davis, and he doesn’t like it. And he’s calling on the league to intervene.

During TNT’s “NBA Tip-Off” show on Thursday, Barkley spoke out against Davis’ trade demand from the New Orleans Pelicans. He accused Davis and LeBron James of colluding to team up on the Los Angeles Lakers.

“We cannot have players and agents colluding to stack superteams. Adam Silver needs to say ‘Anthony Davis …’ … We can’t have players dictating who is going to play together,” Barkley said.

Here is the video:

The fix has seemed to be in for a while on the situation, as Barkley said. Earlier this season, ahead of a game between the Lakers and Pelicans, LeBron said playing with Davis would be “amazing.” Small-market GMs were reportedly furious with the league for not enforcing tampering rules when James made the comments. LeBron and Davis then got together for dinner after the game.

James and Davis share an agent — Rich Paul of Klutch Sports — which makes it seem like they have coordinated things in an effort to get the two superstars together. There is talk that Davis is trying to discourage teams from trading for him by saying he will sign with the Lakers in 2020.

David Stern stepped in during the past to block a Chris Paul trade to the Lakers in 2011. This does seem to be a clear case of tampering and/or collusion. Adam Silver would be well within his rights to intervene.

Charles Barkley messes with John Calipari during postgame press conference

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley took a moment to mess with John Calipari after Kentucky’s 82-80 win over Auburn on Saturday.

Barkley attended the game to watch his alma mater take on the Wildcats in a matchup between the two 13-3 teams. Afterwards, he interrupted Calipari’s press conference and joked with the Kentucky coach.

Barkley said that Kentucky’s statue for Calipari was too skinny and told the coach he was trolling him from the stands.

Barkley had to take his victories where he could get him after his team lost the game. Kentucky is now up to 4-1 in conference play.

Charles Barkley not buying Kyrie Irving’s leadership comments

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley is not feeling Kyrie Irving’s comments about leadership.

Irving called out his team after a loss to the Orlando Magic on Saturday, saying the young players don’t understand what is needed to win a championship. Some of his teammates took offense to the comment, while Irving later said he should have kept things in-house.

Then Irving topped it all off by saying he called LeBron James to apologize for not understanding what the star was going through when trying to lead the Cavaliers. While we said that showed his character growth, others see the other side — that Irving is calling out the young players.

That’s how Barkley interpreted the situation when he spoke on “Inside the NBA” on TNT Thursday:

“I didn’t like it at all,” Barkley said. “It seemed like he was saying, ‘We’re losing because of these guys. They’re young, they don’t know how to win.’ They made it to the Eastern Conference Finals last year without him. You don’t have to tell people you’re a leader — just be a leader.

“(Irving) played great last night. That’s one of the few games I’ve seen where he really made a conscious effort to make everyone around him better. But this thing like, ‘I called LeBron because he taught me how to be a leader’ — well then be a leader. You don’t have to tell us you’re a leader. … I didn’t like it at all.”

Barkley makes a good point: This Celtics team pushed the Cavs to a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference Finals last year, all without Irving or Gordon Hayward on the court. Who is Irving to talk?

On the other side, Irving is probably the most talented player on the team and has championship experience. He’s trying to push his players to get on that championship level, and calling teammates out won’t always be received well, even if it’s necessary.

Charles Barkley has suggestion for Markelle Fultz to fix shooting woes

Markelle Fultz

Markelle Fultz’s agent revealed earlier this week that he believes the point guard has a medical issue with his shoulder, but you can count Charles Barkley among those who are not buying it.

Fultz’s agent Raymond Brothers confirmed on Tuesday that he advised the former No. 1 overall pick to not participate in any team activities until he sees a shoulder specialist. In an appearance on ESPN’s “Golic and Wingo Show” Wednesday, Barkley said he believes the shooting issues Fultz has had in his first two NBA seasons are all between the ears.

“You can’t just keep shooting and keep shooting, because all you do is reinforce bad habits. I think Markelle needs to see a sports psychiatrist or something,” Barkley said. “Like on my golf swing, it shows up when it wants to. I’m pretty sure Markelle can’t control how he shoots that free throw or jump shot. I don’t mean psychological like he’s got issues, but like a sports psychiatrist. I think he really needs that.”

For what it’s worth, the Philadelphia 76ers seemed genuinely blindsided by the idea that Fultz has a medical issue with his shoulder. Team doctors and trainers were unaware of any problems, and Fultz even declared himself fully healthy during training camp.

Barkley, who enthusiastically defended Fultz against trolls earlier this season, is not alone in his thinking. Fultz was a star in college, and it seems obvious that he’s dealing with the equivalent of the “yips.”

Despite his agent saying he should sit out of all practices and workouts until he sees a specialist, Fultz was spotted at practice on Tuesday. That says a lot about the health of his shoulder.

Charles Barkley weighs in on Kevin Durant’s social media behavior

Charles Barkley

It’s safe to say that Charles Barkley is unimpressed by Kevin Durant’s continued habit of getting in sniping matches on social media.

After another summer of Durant responding to critical comments from fans and fellow players, Barkley believes the Golden State Warriors forward needs to lighten up and stop trying to be something that he is not.

“Kevin Durant is just a really nice guy trying to be a bad guy,” Barkley told Ben Golliver of the Crossover. “You can’t do that. It doesn’t work. He spends all his time trying to prove to people how tough and bad he is. He’s so worried about what other people say. Kevin Durant is a great player and a great kid. I was one of those guys who criticized him for going to Golden State, but he doesn’t have to respond every time someone says something about it.

“Who’s got thinner skin: Shaquille O’Neal or Kevin Durant? They’ve both got thin skin like Flat Stanley. They need to just chill out.”

Durant has responded to criticism like this, saying he simply enjoys the back-and-forth. Maybe he does. The perception among fans and critics, though, is always going to be that he’s overly sensitive and thin-skinned.

Bill Russell explains why he flipped off Charles Barkley

NBA legend Bill Russell provided us with the most talked about moment from Monday’s NBA Awards show.

Russell ended up flipping the bird to Charles Barkley as Chuck was presenting the lifetime achievement award to Oscar Robertson. While he was doing his presenting, Barkley shouted out some of the NBA greats who had an impact on him, and that’s when he mentioned Russell. In response, the former Boston Celtics center raised his middle finger.

So why did he do it?

“Sorry everyone, I forgot it was live TV & I can’t help myself whenever I see Charles it just is pure instinct,” Russell said on Twitter.

That’s OK, Bill. We all forgive you. And it’s not like people can’t understand the urge to flip off Barkley anyhow.

Watch: Bill Russell flips Charles Barkley the bird

Bill Russell was involved in an awkward moment with Charles Barkley during the NBA Awards ceremony on TNT Monday.

Barkley was on stage with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar to present a lifetime achievement award to the great Oscar Robertson. Barkley thanked a few players, including Russell. When a TNT camera showed Russell, the legendary center flipped off Barkley in hilarious fashion.

Barkley laughed because that’s all he could really do in that situation. The two have a history of respect, as Barkley shared in this story. They also have a history of the middle finger apparently.

Who in that room is going to question Bill Russell for his actions? My guess is no one.