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Barkley could leave Inside the NBA sooner rather than later

Nov 5, 2012, 4:34 PM EDT

Tahoe Celebrity Golf AP

We all watch Inside the NBA on TNT because the personalities make it work — Charles Barkley as the loud mouth, Kenny Smith trying to walk the funny and serious line, Ernie Johnson trying to keep everybody coloring inside the lines. Oh, and Shaq is there.

But Barkley sounds like he’s not having as much fun as we are.

He told Sports Illustrated that while he has four years left on his contract he may not stick with it that long.

“I love my job,” Barkley said. “I love the people I work with. And I’m going to try to do things to keep me engaged. But I have four years left on my current deal and to be honest with you, it’s going to be a struggle for me to make it for the whole four years. I really don’t know how much longer I’m going to do this. I need something more, or something else to do to be honest with you….

“When I got to my fifth year of broadcasting I was like ‘OK, I’ll do this a couple of more years.’ But now I’m like, ‘Dude, you have been doing this for 13 years and if I make it to the end of the contract it will be 17 years.’ Seventeen years is a long time. It’s a lifetime in broadcasting. I personally have to figure out the next challenge for me.”

Like pretty much all his basketball analysis, you have to take everything Barkley says with a grain of salt… actually, a fistful of salt. TNT is already doing things like having him do some color analysis at games to provide a little variety to his diet.

The idea that he is doing this job while starting to look at what he wants to do next is very Barkley. He’s enjoying his life as retired rich basketball celebrity.

Or, he just may want to golf more. Or run for governor of Alabama. Who knows, he could show up on Top Chef and I wouldn’t be shocked.

  1. joshm5683 - Nov 5, 2012 at 4:39 PM

    I’d love to see him take the seat Mark Jackson used to have with Mike Breen and Jeff Van Gundy on ESPN.

    • chicitybulls - Nov 6, 2012 at 10:35 AM

      Really? Stop being an espn whore. Inside is the BEST pregame show on tv and the BEST basketball show. Has won the tv oscar for that several years in a row now. Get off the espn teat and change the channel dude. There are other, better sports channels out there.

  2. raidmagic - Nov 5, 2012 at 5:02 PM

    That show is going to go bad fast if he leaves.

    • Justin - Nov 5, 2012 at 10:40 PM

      I’m sure that you meant to say the show would be “turrrrible”

    • stayhigh_247 - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:27 PM

      actually it went bad when they brought Shaq in.

  3. thomaskouns - Nov 5, 2012 at 5:23 PM

    Can you say ‘negotiating ploy’…….

    What else is he going to do.? Everyone knows Charles likes to hit the tables in Vegas.

    I don’t blame him (he’s the nest NBA commentator on the planet) but it’s so obvious what he’s doing here.

    • therealhtj - Nov 5, 2012 at 5:40 PM

      One bad run and he’ll take whatever they’re offering.

  4. lakerluver - Nov 5, 2012 at 5:35 PM

    I’m getting tired of Chuckles anyway.

    • soflasfinest - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:57 PM

      We’re tired of you!

  5. larrybrown43 - Nov 5, 2012 at 6:19 PM

    Chuck realizes it’s tough to keep acting like 80 of the 82 make a bit of difference. The older you get the more you know it’s true. Even the playoffs are too long; almost like another season.

    Yes Chuck, there is more to life than acting like a game in November through March has any relevance to the season or life. A younger man doesn’t see the world as broadly.

    There is much more out there for you to do. Follow your heart to where it’s guiding you.

    • denverhoopdreams - Nov 5, 2012 at 7:35 PM

      I’m absolutely confused here right now, what isn’t the point of 82 games?

      It’s a grind for home court advantage and seed, something that does matter in the playoffs and how upsets can possibly be determined. No relevance? Seriously?

      This is what’s wrong with our old generation, they don’t have fun following stats on a nightly basis. Play some Fantasy Basketball too, because it makes the season more exciting than it really is.

      I honestly think the 82 games is what makes the NBA season the greatness that it is. Sorry that casual fans can’t take it.

    • chicitybulls - Nov 6, 2012 at 10:35 AM

      You must REALLY hate baseball with their 162 game season then. lol

  6. hojo20 - Nov 5, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    The best pregame show in sports….if you get rid of Shaq.

  7. spthegr8 - Nov 5, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    That would suck. One of the BEST show’s on T.V.

  8. larrybrown43 - Nov 5, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    denverhoopsdream:

    I was like you when I was 12-32 years old. I really was. In my mid 40s, I see the lack of intensity night in and night out. The NBA is marketed toward a younger crowd for a reason. There is no way I’m spending time or money to watch games the essentially mean nothing. Nobody cares if a fourth has homecourt over the fifth seed.

    After a few games we have a pretty good idea who has a realistic shot at winning the whole thing – about 6-7. That’s after thousands of games. Going by your logic, they might as well play 100 games to really test “the grind.”

    Listen to the Christmas day games. The big regular season day for the league. You’ll hear sneakers squeaking; no intensity. The last few minutes, if close, it’ll pick up like an all star game.

    I get you my friend. No hard feelings. It’s just a different perspective based on age and someday you’ll know what I mean. Good luck with fantasy and real team (Nuggets?).

    • denverhoopdreams - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:37 PM

      Eh, I can only say we will agree to disagree. We both obviously love the game and that’s all that really matters, right? If you don’t love the game, I might leave this conversation completely baffled.

  9. tfoz5150 - Nov 5, 2012 at 10:52 PM

    It’s about time. He’s had his time in the sun. maybe he’ll want to take a shot at GM . He seems to have plenty of ideas. or maybe he’ll want to go to Africa and kill a lion like Menute Bol did. lol

  10. Mr. Wright 212 - Nov 5, 2012 at 11:10 PM

    A lifetime? In Angola maybe.

    • badintent - Nov 6, 2012 at 12:54 AM

      Idi Amin II. I love it.
      And the new President of Kenya, Barack Obombo

      I’m Mitt Romney and I approved this message

  11. sunsation3413 - Nov 6, 2012 at 12:55 AM

    I agree with the Shaq comment. I enjoy Shaq and his antics but he doesnt fit with the TNT crew. He has changed the chemistry and not for the good. It sometimes seems Charles gets tired of Shaq talking over everyone or just talking period. Find another spot for Shaq.

  12. truthplainandsimple - Nov 6, 2012 at 8:54 AM

    Two words. Gary Payton. Two more words. Fire Shaq.

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