When Charles Barkley has something to say, he says it – and never mind if he passes for the old service con. Asked by Fox News about the famous question of load management which agitates the beginning of season, the Chuckster was there cash:
I will never agree with this load management story.
Everything has worked well when the greatest players in history played as much as possible, and they had rotten shoes and not so good doctors. Current players also have private planes, which we did not have.
My first two years in the NBA, I was tight on a plane with a granny on my shoulder for three hours, and in the evening I had to defend Karl Malone or Hakeem Olajuwon. I did not even travel first class until my third season.
As you can see, Charles Barkley does not really have any pity for the problems of the current players, especially as they earn a lot of money infinitely higher than the players of the old days. Obviously, the 1993 MVP does not fail to remind him:
The thing that gets in the way of people is when players rest when they are healthy. Guys earn 30 or 40 million dollars a year!
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If Julius Erving, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar or Bill Russell could play every night with rotten shoes, traveling in airliners, and earning $ 100,000 a year, then a guy who touch 40 or 50 million should not need "load management".
Everyone will agree on what Barkley said, but the current stars will certainly appreciate. Where one can join Chuck is when he laments the trivialization of rest. Players like Gary Payton and John Stockton chained the seasons to 82 games, never complaining. And what about Kevin McHale and Larry Birdwho have reduced their careers and sabotaged their future well-being to play? In 1987, K-Mac had for example played the Finals despite a broken foot, which he still pays the price today.
Undeniably annoyed, Barkley concluded his tirade by mentioning another problem in his eyes: the lack of loyalty. And for him, no need to look further when the NBA wonders about the audiences at half mast of the first games of the season in the USA:
These guys have no loyalty to a team or city, and that's why audiences are down.
Clear, clean, precise, Charles Barkley emptied his bag. With the utmost frankness, as usual.