NBA on TNT analyst Charles Barkley has been in some odd feuds over the years, and one of his latest is with Golden State Warriors’ star Draymond Green. Earlier this month, Barkley said on-air he wanted to punch Green in the face (without really explaining why), and Green responded both by challenging Barkley to do it and by bringing Turner president David Levy into the discussion. Barkley then offered an on-air apology that really wasn’t much of an apology, but he doesn’t seem to have let it go. After Golden State’s 41-point win in Game 3 against the Houston Rockets Sunday, the Inside The NBA crew had Warriors’ forward Kevin Durant on their set, and Barkley took the opportunity to ask Durant if Green was annoying in person. Durant responded by telling Barkley to go talk to Green:
Charles Barkley: “is Draymond Green as annoying in person as he is on TV? "
Kevin Durant “He's just downstairs you can go ask him…”
— JzoSports (@JzoSports) May 21, 2018
Barkley asks “Is Draymond Green as annoying in person as he is on television?” Kenny Smith asks “Annoying to who?” and Durant says “You should go ask him, he’s downstairs.” Shaq then says “He ain’t going to do it. He ain’t going to apologize to him.” Smith asks Barkley again “What annoys you about Draymond?”, Barkley doesn’t respond, and Durant says “I mean, downstairs, you can go ask him.”
It’s ridiculous to see the amount of stupid media controversies that have sprung up around Green these playoffs, as he also was targeted by Stephen A. Smith for his mother’s tweets. It’s not clear why Barkley has such a bone to pick with him, and that feud’s particularly funny considering that many see Green as a potential analyst and even perhaps a possible replacement for Barkley some day.
But Durant handles this quite well, telling Barkley to go take things up with Green if he has an issue. And while the “you have to be in the locker room to criticize players!” argument isn’t always valid, and while we’re not expecting Barkley to start becoming an intrepid interviewer (American Race suggested he is not that), if he does have particular issues with certain players, reaching out to them might make more sense than just talking about punching them in the face on-air. It’s fine if Barkley doesn’t like Green and doesn’t want to talk to him, but the constant discussion that “he’s annoying” and “I want to punch him in the face” without any further rationale is getting a bit much, and Durant does well to handle it here.
[Jzo Sports on Twitter]