Charles Barkley has said some pretty ignorant stuff on the desk of TNT’s Inside the NBA, but Thursday night’s outing was up there with some of the worst of it.
In a discussion about the Golden State Warriors, Barkley said that he didn’t enjoy the basketball product that comes out of Oakland.
Barkley’s comments were odd, contradictory, and misguided:
“Maybe I’m old school, but I’m never gonna like that little girly basketball where you have to outscore people. I’m biased against girl basketball. I love Geno Auriemma, one of my favorite coaches, I love women’s basketball, but I don’t want it in the NBA.”
Despite the fact that Barkley said he both did and did not enjoy women’s basketball in the span of 25 seconds, he also looks a bit silly when comparing it to the “old school” basketball he played.
In three years under Steve Kerr, the Warriors have had defensive ratings of 101.4, 103.8, and 104.4. Barkley — in 16 seasons — only ever played on two teams with a defensive rating below 105 (’96-’97 and ’98-’99 Rockets).
Each of Kerr’s three years in Golden State have seen the team as a Top 10 defensive squad, a feat that Barkley’s teams only matched twice in his 16 seasons. In fact, in 10 of his 16 seasons, Barkley’s teams were in the Bottom 15 in defensive rating.
More importantly, there’s the incredibly sexist tone of Barkley’s comments.
While nobody can fault him for not liking what he perceives — incorrectly — as an offense-only style of basketball by the Warriors, the derogatory nature in which he used to describe them as “girly” is embarrassing to see on national television.
While Barkley seems to have moved to the headline creator point of his career, there’s got to be some kind of acknowledgement that this ham-fisted attempt at demeaning the Warriors ranged into sexist, not to mention factually incorrect and hilarious in the context of Barkley’s own career.
Video of the comment can be seen here: