It’s not exactly the same as Gregg Williams and what is going on with the New Orleans Saints, but a couple of veteran players interviewed this week say the idea of bounties offered for hitting and hurting an NBA player are not unheard of.
Cedric Maxwell, who played 11 seasons in the NBA (most famously with the Celtics) told CSNNE.com of one case — and he named names.
“We did it in the NBA. We had a guy, Len Elmore, used to love to take charges,” Maxwell said. “He’s an analyst right now for CBS. You might want to hear this Len. We had a bounty on you. If you stepped on his chest, you got paid.
“Every time he tried to take a charge and you stepped on him, you got paid,” Maxwell said. “What are they going to do, come back and fine me now?”
Well, I’d never put it past David Stern to try. Maxwell added there was no financial incentive to do this, it was just something the team set out to do.
“One time…” Barkley said, although he would not incriminate the player targeted or the team he plays for. “We were getting beat by 30 points, back, this was in my Philadelphia days. I’m a firm believer if a guy shoots a three that you knock his ass as far in the stands as you possibly can. We were getting beat by 30 or 40, I can’t remember, and this guy was shooting threes and running up and down the court, and I said ‘Hey, we got to hurt that guy right there.’”
Clearly these cases do not rise to the level of what is being discussed around the NBA (or has long been rumored about and taken place quietly in the NHL). Those are sports where hitting is part of the sport and it is the intent and motives (and motivations) that are in question. But on some level it has happened in the NBA.
Charles Barkley thinks that 20% of NBA fans “should be shot.” Oh, Charles.
Charles Barkley has never been shy about speaking his mind, and TV/Radio personality has never prevented athletes from speaking their mind when they appear on one of his shows. So when the former NBA superstar and current TNT personality Charles Barkley went on Rome’s radio show earlier this morning, the chances of Barkley saying something crazy were high. “Sir Charles” didn’t disappoint (hat tip to Royce Young of Eye on Basketball):
“Fans man. They love their team and their player. They don’t want to hear any criticisms. They just want you to be 100 percent for their team period,” Barkley said. “I think it’s only a small faction. I think 80 percent are great. Twenty percent, I wish you could take them out back and just shoot them.”
Rome jumped in there and says, “Well, maybe not shoot them, Chuck.” But Barkley doubled down.
“No, I meant that Jim,” he said. Eighty percent of the fans are fantastic. But 20 percent of them are so mean-spirited and say the most nasty things to you, because they know you can’t grab them.”
To be fair, that bottom 20% of NBA fans can get pretty obnoxious. However, shooting people for being mean on the internet seems a touch extreme. Chalk it up to Charles being Charles, I suppose.
Charles Oakley pretty much thinks that everybody is a wimp
Charles Oakley was on Jim Rome’s radio show today, and the former Bulls big man had some choice words for Kevin Garnett, Charles Barkley, and Kendrick Perkins. Here are the highlights, courtesy of Larry Brown Sports:
“Garnett left Minnesota and hollered and screamed and all that but hes not a tough guy,” Oakley said as Sports Talk Network shared with us. “He’s one of the weakest guys to ever play the game. He’s a complimentary player and went to Paul Pierce’s team and won a championship. I wouldn’t consider him a top 10 tough guy…
…“Barkley, for his size, was a good player but he’s a coward,” Oakley continued. “He was a good player for his size, but he wasn’t a leader and wasn’t a role model. Now he talks so bad about younger guys. I don’t respect that from him. He’s a fraud. He can criticize all the younger kids and if he got something to say, call them and talk to them before you just blast them. He’s wants to be funny, that whole TNT thing and all that, they’re like some clowns on that show”…
…Oakley wasn’t done there. He also said that Kendrick Perkins is similar to K.G. in that all he does is holler and complain, and that the Thunder would win championships if he would just play basketball. Oakley added that Perk’s attitude is the reason he got dunked on by Blake Griffin, and said throughout his 19-year career he only got dunked on three times. Somebody check the tape on that, please.
Oakley, who was named to both the All-Defense team and the All-Star team as a member of the famously physical New York Knicks in 1994, spent the 1st few years of his career as Michael Jordan’s teammate and unofficial “enforcer,” and Jordan was famously enraged when then-Bulls GM Jerry Krause traded Oakley for Bill Cartwright before the Bulls went on their historic title runs. By most accounts, Oakley and Jordan remain good friends, but it doesn’t look like he’s looking to make many new ones.
Video: Kevin Garnett says Celtics won “a bar fight”
Kevin Garnett was a little amped after the Celtics came from 27 points down to beat the Orlando Magic. Really amped. Which made for a great interview on TNT where he asks Craig Sager if he has ever been in a bar fight, then realizing the impossibility of that tells him to ask Charles Barkley what it is like.
Plus, the required compliment of Sager’s suit.
KG had a monster game, looking like himself of five years ago as he defended Dwight Howard for stretches. If Boston coming back to form means more of these interviews, everybody wins.
Video: Check out Charles Barkley on Saturday Night Live
In case you have a life and were out Saturday night (and forgot to set your DVR), Charles Barkley was at 30 Rock hosting Saturday Night Live. Since you were out having fun, we thought you should see the highlights, like him making fun of Shaq above. Although, best part of that skit is Bill Hader as Ernie Johnson.
Third time as host for Barkley, and he wasn’t bad. Below is Barkley’s opening monologue and a skit, “White People Problems.”