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Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley takes funny shot at Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley is having some fun with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid at the NBA All-Star Game.

The relationship between Simmons and Embiid has been scrutinized this season, with growing questions over whether the pair are a good long-term fit together. Barkley leaned into that on TNT’s All-Star pregame show when the two players, playing for separate teams in Sunday night’s game, were shown on screen together. Barkley joked that the two players operating against each other is nothing new.

Barkley hasn’t been shy in talking about these two before. Between Simmons’ hesitance to shoot jumpers and questions about Embiid’s health, the dynamic duo hasn’t quite turned out how the Sixers probably hoped it would. The questions about whether they’re a fit will continue, especially given some recent public comments. For now, though, Barkley is entitled to have his fun.

Charles Barkley rips 76ers for being soft, mentally weak

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley went in on the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday night.

The Sixers visited the Milwaukee Bucks for the first half of TNT’s doubleheader. Speaking ahead of the game on “Inside the NBA”, Barkley ripped his former team for being soft and mentally weak.

“I think they are the softest, mentally weakest team that had a bunch of talent,” Barkley said. “They are the Cleveland Browns of the NBA. They have a lot of talent, and they talk the talk, and that’s it.

“They just talk. They are weak mentally and physically.”

Prior to the season, Barkley picked the Sixers to make the Finals and now believes he got caught up in hype. At the center of his argument that the team is mentally weak is Philly’s 9-18 road record compared to their 22-2 home record. He thinks it’s much easier to win when you have the adulation and support from the home crowd but much tougher when you’re not at home, and the poor road record shows the 76ers are weak.

Barkley isn’t the only one calling the team soft; Ben Simmons said the same thing after his team’s blowout loss to the Heat this week.

Philly has been disappointing so far, but they picked up a few players from the Warriors in a trade that they’re hoping can solidify their team. They don’t seem to be in the same class as Milwaukee though, that’s for sure.

Charles Barkley roasts Kenny Smith about his lack of fame

Kenny Smith Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley is known for his brutal honesty, and he did not hold back when taking a jab at Kenny Smith on Thursday night.

The matter began when TNT showed LeBron James talking with Bill Clinton, who attended the Los Angeles Lakers’ win over the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Smith said he would be recognized by the former president, but Barkley disagreed.

Chuck joked that Clinton would say hello if he saw Barkley or Shaq, but would ask for a hot dog from Smith.

That’s ruthless, but exactly what Chuck does best.

Smith met President Clinton during a Houston Rockets visit to the White House for winning the NBA championship.

Don’t feel too badly for Smith about being mocked by Barkley; Kenny’s gotten plenty of shots in at Chuck over the years.

Charles Barkley takes shot at Draymond Green for averaging ‘triple-single’

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley said in the past that the only negative comments he has ever made about Draymond Green have to do with the Golden State Warriors star’s attitude, but Barkley can no longer safely claim that.

Like the Warriors as a whole, Green is having a down season this year without Kevin Durant, Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson by his side. Many thought his stats would receive a significant boost with Durant gone and Curry and Thompson recovering from injuries, but that has not happened. Barkley took a shot at Green over his numbers during the TNT broadcast on Thursday night when he said, “Draymond don’t talk as much now that he’s averaging a triple-single.”

Shaq loved the joke and asked Barkley to repeat it, and of course Chuck obliged.

Barkley and Green have had a long-running feud that came to a head when Barkley said he wants somebody to punch Draymond in the face because of the way Green complains about foul calls. The two later had a pleasant interaction on live TV during the NBA playoffs, with Barkley saying he has never made any negative remarks about Green’s game. With Green averaging 8.4 points, 6.3 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game for the 9-33 Warriors, Barkley couldn’t resist kicking the big man while he’s down.

Joel Embiid agrees with criticism from Shaq, Charles Barkley

Joel Embiid 76ers

Joel Embiid put up a monster performance on Thursday night, and he admitted after the game that he was motivated by some criticism from the TNT crew.

On Tuesday, Embiid’s Philadelphia 76ers beat the Denver Nuggets 97-92. Embiid had 22 points and 10 rebounds, which are nice stats, but nothing special for him. The game before, in a win over Toronto, Embiid had just 10 points and eight rebounds.

Watching Embiid play well Tuesday but not thoroughly dominate led TNT analysts Charles Barkley and Shaq to say they wanted to see more out of the Sixers big man. Barkley said it was “frustrating” to not see Embiid live up to his potential. Shaq said that Embiid was not playing hard enough. Both analysts framed their criticism in the context of believing Embiid can be one of the greatest players in the league.

Embiid was asked Thursday about the comments from the analysts and said he agreed.

Embiid went out and had 38 points with 13 rebounds in a 115-109 win over Boston on Thursday. He admitted after the game that the comments from Barkley and Shaq played a role in his big game.

“Obviously those guys are great, they’re Hall of Famers. When you got guys like that telling you that they trust you, that I can be great, I take it to heart,” Embiid told TNT in a postgame interview. “I understand where they’re coming from. I know I have that potential, but I haven’t shown that especially this season. So I took it and wanted to come out and be better.

“I appreciate whatever they said. I think it played a part in what I did tonight.”

Embiid seems to be caught in a difficult place. He says the emphasis from the team has been for him to balance the desire to play hard every night with the more important goal of being healthy for the postseason. He also is trying to blend with a team that includes some new teammates.

Philly is now 19-7, and Embiid showed he can bring out his best when he wants to. He’s also showing that he’s handling the criticism from Barkley and Shaq better now, especially after they were on him during the playoffs last season.

Female reporter unloads on Charles Barkley over ‘joke’ that he wanted to hit her

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley is known for pushing the envelope with his unapologetic style, and that is the main reason his time as a broadcast analyst has been arguably more successful than his playing career. It also gets him into trouble on occasion.

Alexi McCammond, a reporter for Axios, took to Twitter on Tuesday night to reveal that Barkley made what he called a “joke” to her about wanting to assault her. She said the remark came in response to her pointing out inconsistencies with Barkley’s political endorsements.

Barkley obviously had no intention of hitting McCammond, but the reporter wasn’t the only one who didn’t see the humor in his comment. Many people began unloading on the Hall of Famer and pointing out that he has made inappropriate quips about domestic violence in the past in addition to providing sexist commentary.

These are the reasons Barkley is a polarizing figure who drives ratings. On one side you have people who will laugh at what he said to McCammond, and on the other there are people who are outraged. Barkley has shown in the past with remarks like the ones he made about the women of San Antonio that he is unafraid of ruffling feathers. Although when he crosses the line, he does apologize like he did on Wednesday:

Charles Barkley has harsh comments about Hassan Whiteside

Charles Barkley

Charles Barkley had some harsh comments for Hassan Whiteside after watching the Portland big man get outplayed in the first half of Thursday night’s game against the LA Clippers.

Whiteside was held to two points and had allowed 11 points and nine rebounds in the half to Clippers big man Ivica Zubac. That led Shaq to be critical of Whiteside during the halftime show.

That was nothing compared to Barkley though, who went in on Whiteside.

“He got that money in Miami then packed it in,” Barkley said of Whiteside. “The Blazers were stupid enough to take him in. … He hasn’t played with effort for years.”

Barkley later offered the harshest line of all regarding Whiteside’s strength as a player, saying it was “going to the bank twice a month, stealing money.”

Here’s the video:

Maybe someone shared the comments to Whiteside in the locker room, because he came out and played much better in the second half. He finished with 17 points and 19 rebounds. His Blazers still lost 107-101.