Here’s a shock: Charles Barkley was asked his opinion of Kevin Durant’s move to the Golden State Warriors, and he’s not a fan of it. Barkley has been one of the most outspoken critics of the Warriors (with the pejorative “jump-shooting team” descriptor being his go-to), and he loves to talk about how nobody was soft back in his day. So of course, Barkley came down hard on Durant’s decision to join the 73-win Warriors, rather than stay in Oklahoma City to try and beat them.
In appearance on ESPN Radio’s Mike and Mike on Wednesday morning, Barkley did just that.
It’s true: what Durant did is a travesty, and no player in NBA history has ever teamed up with other Hall of Famers in an effort to make his path to a championship easier.
For no reason at all, here’s a picture of Barkley with his Houston Rockets teammates Scottie Pippen and Hakeem Olajuwon.
Barkley was pretty honest about his intentions at the time, via the Philadelphia Inquirer:
Barkley flew into Houston last night, but he spent a good part of the day at his home near Philadelphia.
“I’m very excited,” he told two Philly TV stations. “Obviously, it’s something I wanted to do. Houston was my first priority.”
And a perfect fit, Barkley said.
“At this stage of my career, I’m not a great player. I’m a good player,” he said. “But with Hakeem and Clyde, I have a great shot at a championship.”
Unlike Durant, Barkley was in the twilight of his career when this happened, but it’s still one of the all-time examples of ring chasing, and he’s in no position to criticize anyone else for doing it, least of all Durant, who hasn’t been able to get over the hump in Oklahoma City in nine seasons.
We all got over it when LeBron James won two titles in Miami, even though it was widely seen as “taking the easy way out” at the time. If Durant wins a couple in Golden State, the outrage will disappear.