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It won’t get the notice of MJ, but Charles Barkley turns 50 today

Feb 20, 2013, 8:42 AM EDT

barkley black suns jersey

Happy birthday Charles Barkley.

For a younger generation he’s the opinionated and funny guy on the TNT broadcasts.

But for people a few years older, they remember that Charles Barkley could play. Like got into the Hall of Fame could play — he was an NBA MVP, a gold medalist on the Dream Team, an 11 time All-Star who is only one of three players to finish his career with better than 20,000 points, 10,000 rebounds and 4.000 assists (the other two are Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Wilt Chamberlain).

Barkley was a boorish young player, full of himself and a competitive fire that sometimes went too far (remember he tried to spit on a heckler and instead spit on an 8-year) but was jut part of who he is. The funny man on television now is just a more mature extension of the player.

But Barkley had the unfortunate luck of being born three days after Michael Jordan. So while television specials and a HUGE party in Houston All-Star weekend celebrated all things MJ, Barkley will get overshadowed. It happened the same way in his career — Barkley got the Suns to the NBA finals only to run into the Bulls buzz saw. And Jordan.

But they didn’t forget Barkley over at, where in a long story Barkley talks about how he was a better player in Philly than Phoenix, but it was never enough.

Well we remember. And happy birthday Sir Charles.


  1. bucrightoff - Feb 20, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    I think we can all agree, that as far as post-playing career goes: Sir Charles > MJ, and it’s not even really close. Well maybe at golf it is.

  2. baned0n - Feb 20, 2013 at 9:56 AM

    TNT had a nice special (that I believe is shown on NBA TV as well) on Chuck’s 50th. It aired after the slam dunk contest on Sat night. My wife and I quite enjoyed it.

  3. zerole00 - Feb 20, 2013 at 10:27 AM

    LoL man the shorts that NBA players wore back then…

    Happy 50th Charles!

    • fanofevilempire - Feb 20, 2013 at 2:06 PM

      hot shorts

  4. phillyphannn83 - Feb 20, 2013 at 10:53 AM

    Just going off of sheer memory here because I was like 10 at the time but didn’t he do some pretty special things for that kid he spit on as an apology?

  5. chi01town - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:13 AM

    Happy Birthday Barkley you will aways be one of the best to play the game.

  6. robones - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    His 50th NBA TV special was very entertaining to watch. In his only final’s appearance, up 2 games to 0 on the bulls, he said that GOD wanted him to win the championship. During his 50th celebration interview he still acknowledged that GOD wanted him to win the championship but he said “what I didn’t know was the GOD was wearing #23”

    Classic Charles!! Happy Birthday old timer!

  7. dunkindan - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    I was on a kid when the suns had these uniforms (9 or 10) but I remember making my mom take me to Taco Bell to get a Charles Barkeley Phoenix Suns Cup. Happy 50th dirty.

    • dunkindan - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:30 PM

      ” I was a kid…” I wasnt on any kids… oops

  8. dunkindan - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:28 PM

    I was a kid when the suns had these uniforms (9 or 10) but I remember making my mom take me to Taco Bell to get a Charles Barkeley Phoenix Suns Cup. Happy 50th dirty.

  9. cmrose12 - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:33 PM

    Add Karl Malone to that list of players to active to average 20000, 10000, 4000

  10. rajbais - Feb 20, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    The best broadcaster on TV!!!

    ESPN needs to do more stuff like what TNT does with Charles. He’s fun, but really goes in greater depth everywhere in the NBA than anyone else.

    Barkley = Funny and entertaining = Underrated Hoops Intellectual!!!

    • fanofevilempire - Feb 20, 2013 at 2:05 PM

      ESPN is so uptight they get scared when someone doesn’t have a tie on.

      TNT is more laid back with Charles, remember his DUI, he apologized to the suits
      for not firing him despite is unpopular opinion of them previously.

      Charles probably a is pretty cool guy to hang with.
      I like how he ALWAYS calls out MJ, he called him cheap on Oprah.

      Happy five o Charles.

      • rajbais - Feb 20, 2013 at 4:00 PM


  11. davidly - Feb 20, 2013 at 1:45 PM

    Round Mound was bad as a mug when I was coming up.

  12. mogogo1 - Feb 20, 2013 at 1:55 PM

    It won’t get the attention of MJ’s birthday… Then, again, I can’t recall any other athlete’s 50th birthday getting anywhere close to the attention that Jordan’s did. Don’t get me wrong, Jordan was the best ever and I enjoyed looking back at his career, but countless other greats have turned 50 over the years with little notice. I believe there was some stuff done when Ali turned 50, but beyond that I can’t think of many other examples.

    • fanofevilempire - Feb 20, 2013 at 2:10 PM

      Jimmy Kimmel asked if anyone thought MJ was excited about their B’day.

      MJ only cares if you got enough B’Day money to get the MJ 28’s

  13. indigo6y - Feb 20, 2013 at 2:07 PM

    what about karl malone in the 20k/10k/4k club? are you serious?

    • Kurt Helin - Feb 21, 2013 at 2:32 AM

      You are correct, the info I got was wrong. He would be in that club.

  14. cmrose12 - Feb 20, 2013 at 3:27 PM

    Karl Malone should be part of that list, too! He had more of every stat than Sir Charles.

  15. fm31970 - Feb 20, 2013 at 3:43 PM

    HBD to The Round Mound of Rebound. Hard work and effort are what Sir Charles game was about, and he is a delight to watch with Ernie, Kenny, Shaq and Chris on TNT now. Seriously, people watch ESPN’s NBA show? Other than Jalen Rose (who is incredibly b-ball intelligent), they got nuthin’.

  16. katra2logic - Feb 20, 2013 at 3:57 PM

    Pretty sure Charles’ birthday party would be more fun to attend than MJ’s :-)

  17. dennisund - Feb 20, 2013 at 5:36 PM

    I saw him at a local gym and approached him to say, ‘Hey Chuck!’ and he didn’t punch me in the face! That was pretty cool. We talked Sixers basketball for about 30 seconds, about as much as one could ask in the midst of a workout.

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