The Round Mound Of Rebound Can Play And Pound
On Valentines Day Wednesday night, Charles Barkley took a break from expressing his sometimes offensive, always entertaining takes on the NBA panel and joined Jimmy Kimmel Live for the night. At the 3:10 mark in the video above, he shares a story about almost being traded to the Lakers and the events that follow are nothing short of incredible and hilarious.
The Round Mound of Rebound has enough stories from his NBA playing days, that he could fill more entries than the encyclopedia. But playing a professional basketball game wasted definitely takes the cake. Charles wakes up one morning to a phone call by his agent, gets told he is being traded to the Lakers and celebrates in rock star fashion getting blasted with the boys first thing in the morning. Only to learn in the evening that the Sixers pulled out of the deal and he has to play in the game later that night. Unfortunately, he was unable to tell us which game this was, likely because he cant remember any of it. But with some investigative journalism and using the tidbits of information he provided in the interview, I may have been able to pin point which game this was.
1. He was with his boys. Meaning this was most likely a home game.
2. This is prior to the trade deadline and somewhere in the late 80's.
3. After skimming the stats of his home games in the late 80's, there is only one game that is significantly lower than his averages before the trade deadline. 1987, February 11th against Detroit Pistons. Barkley only played 22 minutes with 6 points and 4 rebounds and this was right around the trade deadline. Either this was the game or he plays basketball intoxicated no different than he plays sober, which is a much more impressive feat.
This guy is definitely everyone's favourite person to have a beer with. Look at the way he captivates a room full of blondes with his tipsy antics. In fact, Head Coach of Golden State, Steve Kerr had this to say about his favourite drinking buddy "I love Charles. I worked with him for eight years," says Kerr, who worked as an analyst and commentator for TNT before getting into coaching. "He's incredible at what he does. He's hilarious. He picks up every bar tab when you're on the road; 28 people from TNT at the bar, and he picks up the tab. He bought me so many beers over the years that whatever Charles wants to say about our team, I have no problem with." In response to Barkley's comments about the Warriors.
In the interview with Kimmel, prior to his drunken tale, Barkley talks about his love for the Philadelphia Eagles and congratulated them on a Super Bowl victory. But he failed to mention how he was there celebrating with Philly in the same fashion he celebrated his potential trade to the Lakers. Chuck is a media mogul. He is well aware that one wasted anecdote is enough for live TV. So he played his cards right and didn't share with the audience about his celebration in Philadelphia for the NFC Championship and the interview he had with NBC, where Charles told NBC " I'm tired of you now, I'm going to get drunk."
He always keeps it 100 and tells it how it is. Barkley is honest, sometimes brutally honest but that's why he is a fan favourite. The Great One, Wayne Gretzky, told the media that Chuck is his favourite athlete because he is the only athlete to say what every other athlete wants to say. He is the people's athlete. What he says is something we all thought at some point and he has made millions of dollars in his career doing things his way. Charles is the epitome of work hard, play hard. The most undersized, overweight, yet versatile power forward during his tenure in the NBA. He's considered undersized for the small forward position but remains among the all-time leaders of rebounds, blocks and steals for the power forward position. This kind of performance on and off the court will leave a legacy that is unmatched
There will always be naysayers and people argue that this type of behavior is unacceptable. Many dispute that athletes must be role models and good examples for their children but Barkley has a different philosophy. He argues that athletes should not be role models and that thousands of dudes in jail can dunk a basketball too and that he shouldn't be expected to raise other peoples kids and for parents to be role models themselves. Truer words have never been spoken.
Chuck sparked serious debate with this statement:
"I think the media demands that athletes be role models because there's some jealousy involved. It's as if they say, this is a young black kid playing a game for a living and making all this money, so we're going to make it tough on him. And what they're really doing is telling kids to look up to someone they can't become, because not many people can be like we are. Kids can't be like Michael Jordan."
Again, a very accurate and realistic outlook on raising your kids. He's re-wording the same thing every parent has told their kid at some point " Yes, I know you want to be a pro athlete but you need to have a back-up plan because that may not work." However, Barkley's slightly edgier response was condemned by the public. But like he gives a flying chuck anyways...