Chris Canty reacts to Charles Barkley shout-out Photo credit: ESPN Radio

Charles Barkley is probably the most popular analyst in sports. So, when he recognizes someone else’s analysis, it resonates.

Late Thursday night on Inside the NBA, Barkley was debating about defense with Shaquille O’Neal when he thought back to a point a few of his favorite NFL analysts on ESPN have made.

“My NFL friends, I love watching Ryan Clark and Marcus Spears talk about, Chris Canty does a fabulous job also,” Barkley noted. “They say, ‘Coaches do two things, they’re either teaching it or they’re letting it happen.’ I said, ‘Man, that’s really good!’ And you are, you’re either teaching it or you’re letting it happen.”

Barkley’s point was that it’s hard to expect a team with bad defensive habits to just turn the effort on in the last two minutes of a close game. The team Barkley and Shaq were referring to was the Milwaukee Bucks, who fired head coach Adrian Griffin this week and hired Doc Rivers as his successor.

But it was pretty cool of Barkley to go cross-sport and cross-network to show Clark, Spears and Canty some love Thursday night. And Friday morning, while Canty was co-hosting his ESPN Radio show Unsportsmanlike with Evan Cohen and Michelle Smallmon, they showed him the shout-out from the NBA on TNT star and his reaction was awesome.

“That’s exactly what I say!” Canty said with excitement after hearing Barkley recite his coaching analysis. “He did shout me out. Appreciate it big fella. Chuckster! Showing some love!”

Canty’s reaction was genuine, as was Barkley’s praise of him and his NFL peers at ESPN. And considering Barkley’s popularity, entertainment value and success in media, there’s no better analyst to get some flowers from.

[Inside the NBA]

About Brandon Contes

Brandon Contes is a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. He previously helped carve the sports vertical for Mediaite and spent more than three years with Barrett Sports Media. Send tips/comments/complaints to