Charles Barkley Sticks By His Word, Responds to LeBron James’ ‘Hater’ Comments

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Charles Barkley Sticks By His Word, Responds to LeBron James’ ‘Hater’ Comments

Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James and TNT analyst Charles Barkley have dominated NBA headlines over the last 24 hours after the two had harsh words for one another, starting with Barkley questioning James’ leadership.

After Barkley called LeBron a “whiny” player because of his desire to bring another playmaker to the Cavaliers, the four-time Most Valuable Player fired back with all cylinders at Barkley, calling him a “hater” and examining his credibility. James also exposed many of Barkley’s flaws during his playing career, including the “I’m not a role model” drama and other off-the-court issues. Also, LeBron noted, “all I’ve done my entire career is represent the NBA the right way. Fourteen years later, never got in trouble. Respected the game. Print that.”

Today, Charles Barkley responded and showed respect to LeBron James, but also stuck by his words.


“I have no problem with what LeBron said,” Barkley said on ESPN Chicago’s Waddle & Silvy radio show on Tuesday. “Some of it was true. I did pay my debt, that’s not true. I was never late to the All-Star Game, so that’s not true. But I don’t overreact, I’m not gonna say anything bad about him or get personal, I stick by what I said. He was all whiny and everything last week. If I’m going to be straightforward, like I always try to be, I know guys are going to come back at me sometimes. I’m good. He got personal but I’m never going to get personal on an NBA player. All of my criticisms or critiques are always just about basketball and I’m going to keep doing what I do.”

“Clearly, [James] Googled me and found out some things,” Barkley said. “I’m not going to get upset because somebody said something bad about me. I’m not like 12 years. My initial criticism was fair and I’m good with that.”


Barkley admits “it wasn’t right” for LeBron to bash his teammates in such a way after coming off a championship season.

“Any time you criticize these young guys, they call you a hater,” Barkley said. “They never ask you if the criticism is fair or not. I’ve said the guy is one of the 10 greatest players ever. I’ve said the guy is the best player in the world. I’ve said he’s a wonderful guy. I’m not sure how that constitutes hating just because he’s bashing his teammates everyday.”

“I’ve only met LeBron casually,” Barkley said. “He’s always been great to me. I think I’ve been great and cordial to him, but this notion that we have to be friends — we’re never gonna be friends. And that’s not a negative thing. I’m not friends with none of these young guys. My job is to do my job.”

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