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LeBron defends Wade: “Charles Barkley needs to shut up”

Dec 11, 2012, 12:50 PM EDT

Atlanta Hawks v Miami Heat Getty Images

Last Thursday, Charles Barkley sat on his TNT soapbox and said that Dwyane Wade‘s game had taken a step back. Wade had just had a 3-of-13 shooting night against the Knicks, which came on the heels of a 9-for-19 game a couple nights before versus Washington.

Barkley said Wade was “starting to lose his athletic ability” and needed to adjust his game, to learn to play below the basket. He said it in the most Barkley way possible.

But the reports of Wade’s decline Wade’s decline have been greatly exaggerated. In the two games since Wade has 52 points on 20-of-25 shooting. He was at the heart of the Heat’s best game of the season Monday, beating the Hawks.

So, LeBron James, you have anything to say about Wade’s performance (via NBA.com)?

“It means Charles Barkley needs to shut up,” James said. “I mean, the man [Wade] is shooting 80 percent from the floor the last couple of games. That’s like, crazy, right? That’s why he is who he is. Unbelievable.”

Wade had off-season knee surgery, to expect him to be 2006 Wade out of the gate is a bit much. Wade has pretty clearly not been vintage Wade this season, the question is how much is age and wear and tear — few players throw their body around as recklessly as Wade, although he has curbed that some — and how much is his knee not being 100 percent?

Barkley isn’t wrong — Wade is aging and he is having to adjust his game. He’ll own up to that. It’s just that Barkley saying it bluntly on a national platform isn’t going to play well in the Heat locker room. They are going to defend their own. Plus Wade is still plenty athletic, even now.

If the Wade we see come the playoffs is anywhere near the Wade we saw against the Hawks Monday, Barkley is going to look wrong on this one. Not that he cares.

  1. rayray5227 - Dec 11, 2012 at 7:24 PM

    Kurt, you brought a long a lot of your LeBron fanboys here. Do you guys get together and talk about your wet dreams?

  2. cantonbound13 - Dec 11, 2012 at 9:47 PM

    Barkley is great. You have to respect people that aren’t afraid to say what they believe. There are too many Kurts out there that just kiss an all stars butt rather than criticize them when they deserve to be criticized.

  3. crazysamoan - Dec 11, 2012 at 10:33 PM

    I don’t think Barkley is just any commentator. He’s one of the best power forwards to ever play the game.

  4. txnative61 - Dec 12, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    LOL—–Barkley shut up??? Good luck with that!

  5. cedtammy12 - Dec 12, 2012 at 6:15 AM

    It’s still a lot of ball to be played play ball HEAT lets go

  6. cedtammy12 - Dec 12, 2012 at 6:15 AM

    Go Heat

  7. allen227 - Dec 12, 2012 at 12:45 PM

    One douche sticking up for another.

  8. gmsingh - Dec 12, 2012 at 4:39 PM

    LeBron: “Wade, I got your back.”

    Wade: “That’s good, because I need it to flop on.”

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