Charles Barkley Doesn’t Buy That Altitude Helps Denver: ‘I Don’t See No Damn Nuggets Banners Up Here’

While the NBA on TNT had its final broadcast on Monday after Game 7 between the Heat and Celtics in Boston, it wasn’t quite time for Shaquille O’Neal and Charles Barkley to go on vacation just yet.

The two made the trek to Denver to be part of NBA TV’s coverage of the NBA Finals, joining Matt Winer and Grant Hill for their pregame show from Ball Arena and picked up right where they left off, badgering each other across the (very tiny) NBA TV desk on the floor before Game 1.

Part of the conversation prior to Game 1 was the fellas discussing the impact of altitude on opposing teams, with Shaq and Grant being on the side of it being a real factor, while Chuck is not a believer in an altitude advantage. Barkley emphasized that point by scanning the rafters above him before declaring he doesn’t “see no damn Nuggets banners up here” as evidence it can’t be that great an advantage.

It’s a great Barkley bit to refuse to buy into altitude making you more tired. Grant joked at one point that was because Barkley never tried hard enough when in Denver, and Shaq admitted he used to “foul shave” and get two first quarter fouls on purpose in Denver so he could go sit on the bench because he used to get so tired running around at altitude.

While Barkley didn’t agree with the rest of the crew it’s a factor on the court, he was happy to talk about how his golf ball flew farther when he played earlier in the day with Peyton Manning.