Before getting to the latest Charles Barkley controversy, let me just say this: I usually enjoy his antics on TNT. Covering the NBA after retirement and still getting millions per year has to be a dream job for him. Shaq too. Kenny Smith is kind of a joke, but the entire set up works with Ernie Johnson trying to keep them all in line to actually talk basketball in a civilized manner. It is fun, informative, and you get the former player’s perspective. I am a fan of the Barkley nonsense more often than not, especially when him and Shaq start goofing around. Two GROWN kids. It’s great to watch as an NBA fan.
That being said, Barkley (scripted or not) likes to make bold statements. When his intent is to drum up interest, buzz, or attention for himself – whatever, he likes to stir the pot. That is part of the job. Be outspoken. Voice your opinion loud and make your stance on a certain subject. This past Thursday night, he did it again. This time though, it wasn’t over stupid silly “pointless” stuff like a basketball debate or sports junk. This was about “life and death” as Kenny Smith said.
Here is the full clip, so I am not accused of putting words in his mouth. Watch:
Point blank: Charles Barkley is wrong. Not even in the sense that a stupid opinion can technically be “wrong” but in terms of facts, he is wrong. That isn’t how taxes work, and that certainly isn’t how any kind of Covid-19 vaccine should be distributed. Smartly, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman both said months ago that their athletes should not and will not ‘skip ahead’ in line for vaccines.
Smart replies there guys.
Barkley? Not so much. I don’t know if he was bored and wanted to drum up attention for himself or not, but yuck! Horrible take and something that only a rich athlete would say on national television. He needs to step outside of the sports bubble a bit and realize there is more going on right now in this world. I hope TNT and/or his colleagues put out a statement disagreeing with his opinion just not to avoid any confusion. To be fair though, Barkley was immediately questioned by his co-hosts. Just watch the clip again. Nobody was buying his crap. Were YOU buy his crap?
Disappointed in you Chuck.
By Justin Watry (TWITTER: @JustinWatry)