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Charles Barkley on LeBron: “Just when you think it couldn’t get any stupider…”

Oct 1, 2010, 2:31 PM EDT

Thumbnail image for cbarkley.jpgWell, the chances of Charles Barkley and TNT getting a one-on-one sit down with LeBron just fell to below zero…

Charles Barkley went on WIP in Philadelphia with Howard Eskin and Ike Reese, primarily to talk about football because… sorry, don’t have an answer for that one. But Barkley talked McNabb coming back to Philly Sunday.

Then, of course, somebody asked him about LeBron saying race played some role in the backlash to his decision and… here we go:

“It’s like watching a movie. Just when you think it couldn’t get any stupider, it gets more stupid…

“Howard I’m telling you. Sometimes you just say he’s making bad decisions and you’re like okay, he’s gonna get it together. Then he makes more bad decisions. The thing that’s interesting about LeBron, I don’t think Magic, Michael, and myself, we said we wouldn’t have did it. That’s not a criticism. We were asked a question. I don’t want to play with Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, or Michael, I want to beat them. That’s strictly basketball. The only criticism I’ve heard about LeBron and it was my biggest criticism, that decision thing was just stupid. It was stupid. The second thing when they all came out there dancing around on stage, that was silly. That’s the only thing I’ve heard LeBron get criticized about. That has nothing to do with race. That’s what makes this last thing so stupid. That’s stupid. The only criticism of LeBron has been the decision and the one hour of our life that we can’t have back. And ESPN, oh my God. Oh my God. To go down to training camp and report everyday is one of the most ridiculous things I’ve ever seen. I’m watching yesterday and one of the guys actually said LeBron looked fierce in practice. I’m like fierce in practice? What the hell does that mean? He was fierce in the second day of training camp. You’re like come on man, he really didn’t say that did he. This summer with LeBron and all the stuff that went on is like a bad movie. You just can’t make this stuff up.”

No you can’t make stuff like this up.

  1. dodirty4u - Oct 2, 2010 at 4:33 AM

    Charles Barkley does deserved to be mentioned with Michael and Magic..He was the best player in the league for a few years and the best player on the first Olympic Dream Team. In regards to’s sad but true..America is the only country in the world where a everything is defined on race..which is why I live in Europe now :-)

  2. montvilleguy - Oct 2, 2010 at 8:24 AM

    Barkley was a superb player in his day. If I recall correctly, he had injuries (knee?) that limited his career, but he was a great player in his prime. Barkley is no angel for sure, but I had a personal encounter with him that permanently changed my opinion. I was in a restaurant in the Hilton Hotel in Tokyo, when Barkley, a friend and two women came in and sat down at a nearby table. I recognized him but decided to leave him alone since I figured he was frequently interrupted by fans while having dinner. I later found out he had been in Tokyo for some sort of exhibition game the night before. I observed him out of the corner of my eye for about an hour, while he patiently signed autographs for Japanese people that recognized him and came over to his table. He was friendly and very courteous to all, and I was really impressed because this was happening in a rather private setting and he really did not to be as nice as he was, and honestly, the constant parade of folks coming to his table would have tried almost anyone’s patience. It all ran against the grain of his public image as a “bad boy”.

  3. Barry - Oct 2, 2010 at 9:16 AM

    I agree with you 100%. See my analysis of Charles Barkley in a previous Probasketball blog by KURT HELIN with headline: Pat Riley fires back at Charles Barkley and Van Gundy.
    He is jealous about what he couldn’t achieve at his prime- what a collosal Waste of a talent!!!
    Now he is jealous of ESPN stealing the show time from his TNT gig.
    He is hiding under this disguise but his true feeling comes through all these venemous attack on this innocent kid-LEBRON.
    There’s no issue that Barkley will take a pass. He has opinion just about anything.

  4. Lebron who?? - Oct 2, 2010 at 9:35 AM

    Haven’t been to an NBA game lately, have you? What do you think the fans are going to take into the Q to throw at the Heat players? Fans have to pass through metal detectors when entering the arena. And on that particular night, I’m pretty sure that no one will be allowed to take anything into the Q that could be thrown at anyone.

  5. Omnius - Oct 2, 2010 at 9:41 AM

    LeBoring James and the media pundits – the perfect example of Dumber and Dumbest! Charles Barkley is correct that LeBoring James made a foolish self serving move to team up with Wade and Bosh because he knows he’ll never lead a team to an NBA championship – he needs to have Wade win one for him. LeBoring isn’t a real man like Barkley was, the King of Choke doesn’t want to earn a ring he wants to be given one. LeBoring’s whine about attacks being racist is just an example of how he doesn’t want to face reality that people don’t like him because he’s a media construct of hype – he’s the epitome of much ado about nothing! Kobe Bryant is the greatest basketball player in the world and the Repeat World Champion Lakers will Threepeat next June!

  6. Frenchie - Oct 2, 2010 at 9:53 AM

    Once again…folks that know nothing about athletics chimes in. It takes a team effort to win a championship. Jordan and Coby both had very good role players…Pippen and Fisher are the greats in my eyes. Without them, Ewing, Barkley and Lebron would be sporting flashy rings. Trust me. You may be a little to young to remember the Ewing and Barkley days Cordae or should I say ignorant. And should I say Coby and Lebron could not have played back in the day. Guys like Rodman, Thomas and Laimbeer would have knocked them silly. Today’s fouls are foul! Coby cries everytime he drives to the hole. What a pussy! The sport of basketball didn’t go international due to race…Ignorant Cordae. It went international to increase revenues by getting the international community to watch US sports. Go to school…get and education…and speak intelligently about something and stop generating excuses for your lack of intelligence! OUT

  7. ocgunslinger - Oct 2, 2010 at 9:56 AM

    Big Chuck has always been one to vocalize his opinion and frankly his opinions are his and not the PC crap that flows from most and is refreshing even if I didn’t agree with him. He was a force to be dealt with when playing. LeBron is an immature young man with an enormous ego and really a classless jerk. If I had a choice I would rather listen to Barkely than James any time.

  8. ocgunslinger - Oct 2, 2010 at 10:07 AM

    Hey Dude… argue that Cordae needs to get some education and intelligence is great…..up to the point that your post references a “Coby” leaves me wondering who that is? Wonder if you mean that guy that plays with the Lakers? Name escapes me but his name is spelled with a “K” and plays with more injuries than anyone in the game. YOU need to follow your own advice you dope.

  9. Cspur - Oct 2, 2010 at 10:18 AM

    Charles Barkley is right. No way, no how did race play a part in the backlash against Lebron leaving Cleveland. The way he left was handled poorly as well as exposing him as arrogant and egotistical. He should admit he made a mistake in the way he handled the decision and quit making it worse by playing the race card.
    Tim Duncan had a chance to leave the Spurs and he was classy about his decisions. He let the team know what his options were and they were able to reach an agreement. He gave the organization the same respect they had shown him through the years. If Lebron had done the same thing w/the Cavaliers then all of this nonsense would not even be a topic of conversation.

  10. badam - Oct 2, 2010 at 10:23 AM

    the three stooges were dancin n prancin on stage like they just won a championship thats what its all about NOT RACE ledum!

  11. badam - Oct 2, 2010 at 10:34 AM

    its not about race its about the three stooges dancin n prancin on stage like a bunch of school girls actin as if they just won a championship. oh and buy the way chuck loves them white women like he loves chicken wings.

  12. bosco - Oct 2, 2010 at 10:42 AM

    I don’t like Brett Favre either for thinking he’s all that and calling press conferences and last I checked he was white. LeBron, it really has nothing to do with race.

  13. Badman - Oct 2, 2010 at 11:25 AM

    I was thinking the same thing!!!!

  14. quinn - Oct 2, 2010 at 11:32 AM

    Are you joking? Charles Barkley was the best player in the league besides MJ in the late 80s/early 90s. He won MVP and took phoenix to the finals in 1993, averaging 25.6 points and over 12 rebounds at 6 foot 6! He’s right up there with Magic and Bird as far as all time players go, no question

  15. Anonymous - Oct 2, 2010 at 12:02 PM

    dodirty4you said “America is the only country in the world where a everything is defined on race..which is why I live in Europe now :-)”
    Right, and there is no racism at all in Europe, right? What a joke. I’ve been there (6 countries) and seen it and it is ugly.

  16. mclovin - Oct 2, 2010 at 12:12 PM

    1ST Barkley was a beast in his day . The reason he doesnt have a ring is because he played in the wrong erra (Magic, Jordan ,THE
    DREAM)What Lebrick said is a valid point , about the race .Its because he is black & making so much money is the resaon that he is being treated this way . Lebrick hasnt proved anything but
    he is a good basketball player . I think D-Wade is a better all
    around better player .Everone has ther own opinion about what he should or should”nt do or say . ESPN is feeding this monster,and ego is a mutha@#@#@#@# if your feeding it the right fuel. I think the new big three will dominate certain teams but lakers/ orlando /boston / dallas will give them a run for there money . It
    remains to be seen if the can coexist together.

  17. tdot11 - Oct 2, 2010 at 12:14 PM

    lebron has the mind of a 17 year old and you wonder why he makes poor decisions, his manager went to community college to earn his diploma. Lebron is surrounded by yes men, the heat will be fun to watch but in june Kobe will be king. CANT BE A KING WITHOUT A RING!

  18. TruthTeller - Oct 2, 2010 at 12:55 PM

    Worthy is better than Barkley? You just lost all credibility.

  19. badam - Oct 2, 2010 at 1:47 PM

    one ball three stooges not enough ball time someone will start whining and ask for a trade

  20. flintstone n cali - Oct 2, 2010 at 2:08 PM

    You are sooooo right, Carlos! For whatever reason Mr.Barkley seems to really believe he is in the same catagory of “Greatness” as Magic and Mike, when truth be told Charles has never won anything other than a free trip to the Phoenix county jail for make a complete fool out of himself. And this is a guy that has the audacity to talk about Labron making bad decisions. What has our society come to for even giving this person a voice to be heard about anything other than participating in an AA meeting. He’s screwed up, and anyone that credits his advice is just as screwed up.

  21. Will - Oct 2, 2010 at 3:32 PM

    Cordae, name the 4 players that were better than Barkley during that time frame. I can think of 1 or 2, Jordan and Malone but who else??? And mind you he was playing 6-10 guys at 6-5. The guy was amazing on the floor until he got out of shape in the end and this is indisputable. Sure he is well known for speaking his mind and while I don’t even agree with everything he says, he always seems to come from a place of honesty and thoughtfulness. I think your (and many others’) blind love for Lebron (who is one of the greatest athletes every to bounce a basketball but who has still much to accomplish as a player) may be clouding you vision when it comes to his decision making and his veiw of his own self worth. Lebron needs to shut up until he’s actually won something! And before you say niether has Barkley…let me retort…then at least until his Hall of Fame career is over.

  22. Ellern - Oct 2, 2010 at 5:28 PM

    I am a black woman. I like what Charles said. Charles treats black women kind. He treats basketball players’ moms real nice. He treats black female sport reporters and black athletes nice. Everybody have preferences. As, soon as we realize that we will be calmer and nicer. Charles is no saint. Neither am I. Neither are you. I have enough understanding to know people are entitled to their decisions and preferences. Halle picked her preference that made her feel good. I like to hear Charles take on every things. Because too many sport reporters are just too safe. Sport reporters just smile and agree with each other on TV. So, fake. I liked when Howard C. interviewed Ali. He stood toe to toe with athletes with question, and comments. Speak what you believe Charles. You are intitled. I watch TNT in my house, sometimes full of my family, friends, girlfriends and neighbors curled up with a large cup of hot coco, laughing and commenting on Charles statements. Charles is good company. What Charles do with his personal life is his business. I told my husband I am cleaning my schedule for TNT, Sir Charles and the NBA, better than CSI, Dancing with the Stars, American Idol, Bones, Supernational and Ghost Whispers. My neighbor down the street and across the street and up the street have his house filled with men and drinks watching NBA on TNT. Our whole neighborhood watches Sir Charles and the NBA on TNT. I stay up late and watch all the comments after the game. That coversation fills up my phone to my friends and family member out of town. If a man wants to get on one knee and propose to his fiancee, on national TV that is his business. That’s what Lebron did. Lebron got on one knee on national TV and proposed to D.W. and the Heat and promised to win the ring. Of course the old girlfriend, hurts and disappointant. Miss Cleveland was denied on national TV. Now Lebron saying it was a race thing. I guess Miss Cleveland is the white girl. Miss Heat is the Latino women. Ugly Lebron, ugly.

  23. Greg - Oct 2, 2010 at 5:55 PM

    Sure…Maybe she should tell himself to shut up! He got big nerves calling anyone stupid. The big dumb Bama country so-called Muhammad Ali wanna be is jealous of Lebron. Lebron has loyal friends and girlfriend from his growing up days. Charles’ so-called friends of those days used him. And dropped him as soon as he stop giving them any money. He had to get that clue from some Jewish lawyer. Lebron is still tied to his own people. Charles had to married a white woman. Charles is the only so-called black person I know that thinks Clarence Thomas is a hero. Charles is terribly lost and confused. He is the only person I know that is a Black Militant an Uncle Tom together…He is trying this in the same dumb fat assed person.

  24. Cordae - Oct 2, 2010 at 8:18 PM

    Frenchie? Or whatever, SCROLL UP AND RE-READ THE ENTIRE COMMENTS SECTION! Never did Isay the league went international due to race. Argue with the right person next time! And wtf is Coby? I’m not even gonna waste my breath.
    And Will, I said four players at his position alone, I really meant to say three though. Want to hear? From 1987-96. Kevin McHale, Scottie Pipen, and Karl Malone. My dad has tapes on ALL of those guys (including Charles) Some things he did were great, but a great player overall? Compared to those players? Yea right…

  25. Barry - Oct 2, 2010 at 8:30 PM

    Just ask yourself how many NBA Championships Pippen won during the two years that MJ was gone playing Golf or Baseball?
    How many NBA Championships would KOBE Bryant would have won alone without SHAQ or PAU GASOL & Fisher?
    How many NBA Championships would this guy in Boston Paul Pierce have won by himself without Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett joining him in 2008 Championship run?
    How many Championships did KG Kevin Garnett win by HIMSELF in COLD Minnesota b4 he was traded to BOSTON wher he joined Pierce & Ray Allen to form the BIG ThREE?
    You tell me how many NBA Championships Dwight HOWARD will(never) win in ORLANDO before the road closes down or the window/door shuts down on his face from down under SOUTH BEACH?
    You can ask his personal coach Patrick EWING how fast the window of opportunity shuts down quickly on people like him when HAKEEM The Dream and the HOUSTON Rockets took the only two Championships as MJ was out or gone Fishing?
    LBJ LEBRON made the RIGHT MOVE @ the RIGHT TIME- You just have to deal or live with it!
    There is not a lot of margin for error in making your move in this NBA where only about 7 or 8 TEAMS have won at least a Championship with BOSTON and FAKERS holding SWAY? You don’t want to be a sour grape like Charles Barkley who wasted HIS YOUTH by miscalculating( Gambling) You want to be like KG Kevin Garnett who knows when to hold them and when to fold them? He(KG) Got a RING!!!
    How many NBA Championship Rings does Charles Barkley have- ZIP+ZERO.
    Sir Charles please let it go, Give it UP, your time clock has expired just like your un-illustrous NBA career ended un-fulfilled.
    You don’t want to Wish your FATE even on your enemy, do YOU?

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