Charles Barkley made a name for himself in the NBA as one of the most dominating power forwards to ever play the game. After retiring from the NBA, he made a seamless transition to the media, and has since made a name for himself for being a straight shooter and speaking what is on his mind. When people have questions that need an answer, no matter what the question may be, Barkley will tell it like it is. He is becoming the voice that people turn to and, as it turns out, the very thing Barkley resisted years ago, a role model. The reason people like to hear what he has to say because it often makes sense and he has the nerve to say it. That is the same reason why 790 The Ticket in Miami wanted him on the station. They had some questions and Barkley had some answers. Charles Barkley joined790 the Ticket in Miami with the Dan LeBatard Show to talk about the mustache that Michael Jordan had in his last Hanes commercial, how much power LeBron James has with the Cleveland Cavaliers, and why he thinks the Celtics have been a legitimate surprise in the playoffs.
On the mustache that Michael Jordan had in his last Hanes commercial:
“Hey Dan, I have got to admit when I saw that commercial I had to take a double take… That is one of the stupidest things that I have seen in a long time. First of all, I can’t believe that they let that commercial get on the air like that. I mean in making commercials, they have got little ladies there making sure the cheese is right. When I am shooting the Taco Bell commercial they have got this little woman making sure that every cinnamon twist and every piece of cheese is in order and now they let my man get on TV with that terrible mustache. I was totally in shock and just, I just can’t believe that. That is really not good at all.”
What he would say if he had a mustache on the set while shooting a Taco Bell commercial and they asked him to shave it:
“Well, first of all I would never shave my mustache like that. I mean I have got to admit that I don’t know what the hell he was thinking and I don’t know what Hanes was thinking. I mean it is just stupid, it is just bad, plain and simple.”
Whether he mocked MJ after he saw the commercial:
“You know I haven’t really, I just kind of, I haven’t said anything about it. You guys are the first. I have been talking about it since the couple of times that I saw it during the playoffs to be honest with you but you guys are the first person, I am surprised. I have actually been very surprised that nobody has said anything because that really is just stupid, plain and simple.”
How much power LeBron James has with the Cleveland Cavaliers:
“Well I think this is a once in a lifetime opportunity, Dan, to be honest with you, where a guy is going to have this much power in the prime of his career. I think at this stage you have got to give him anything that he wants, to be honest with you. Is it right? No. I do but I think at this stage, because if you lose LeBron and especially if you lose him for nothing you are back in the lottery for another ten years. You know he is, to me, still the best basketball player in the world. I know that everybody turned on him after they lost and they jumped on the Kobe bandwagon, which is going to be interesting when they turn on Kobe if they don’t win the series. I told somebody that they are going to do Kobe the same way that they did Peyton Manning. Going into the Super Bowl, Peyton Manning was arguably the best quarterback ever but then after the Super Bowl, I heard all of these guys talking that he was overrated. I said, a month ago LeBron James was the greatest player in the world, he loses. Now Kobe is the man now, if he loses he is going to be no Michael Jordan, nobody is. Dan, to be honest with you, at this stage I would give LeBron whatever he wants to be honest with you.”
Why he thinks the Celtics have been a legitimate surprise in the playoffs:
“Well because I think Doc Rivers has done a fantastic job. If you go back and look they played defense better than any team in the NBA. You go back and look when they played Cleveland, they took advantage of Jamison trying to guard Garnett, and they played Rasheed Wallace a lot. They kept Shaq out there. First and foremost, LeBron didn’t play well. Mo Williams didn’t play well. Then against Orlando, they just stayed at home on the three point shooters and said to Dwight Howard, ‘If you can get thirty or forty a night, ya’ll are going to beat us.’ Dwight Howard’s offensive game is not where it needs to be. It is such a simple game too Dan. I said the first series with the first game and Michael actually heard me say it and he said the same thing. I don’t understand why teams double Dwight Howard. I would play him with three big centers and if he gets close to the basket, I’d grab him but his offensive game is limited. He is not going to get twenty-five or thirty a night.
When he gets better, and he has got a long way to go, he would be able to get forty a night on most players if he becomes a better free throw shooter. But right now, he is so limited offensively. But these teams, Charlotte and Atlanta, they double teamed him and left those three point shooters open all night and I was like, ‘ This is bad coaching.’ I mean this guy is going to have some good games because he is so talented but his offensive game with him going one-on-one is not where it needs to be. But Boston is the only team that is saying that we are not going to leave any of these three-point shooters and the rest is history. So take your hat off to the great Doc and Tom Thibodeau has done with their defensive presence.”