Charles Barkley Inside the NBA Screen grab: ‘Inside the NBA’

With the future of TNT Sports’ Inside the NBA in flux, Charles Barkley is unsure what will happen to the league’s preeminent studio show.

He was quite honest about the morale being down inside Warner Bros. Discovery during an appearance on The Dan Patrick Show Thursday. Barkley not only took aim at his current bosses but admitted that the people he works for — including David Zaslav — screwed up by saying they didn’t have to have the NBA. Barkley thinks those comments quite frankly pissed off Adam Silver, and they seemed to have pissed off “Chuck,” as well.

Barkley didn’t hold back, criticizing his bosses for losing the NBA rights. He even hinted at a surprising possibility — taking the entire Inside the NBA crew with him under the umbrella of his own production company — Fine Line Productions.

Dan Patrick suggested this idea to Barkley, suggesting that he and his colleagues should create their own production company. The proposal is that Barkley, Shaquille O’Neal, Kenny Smith, and Ernie Johnson join forces to create their own production company. They would keep the beloved studio show format intact, with the same personnel all under one roof, producing Inside the NBA independently.

They could then shop this established show to networks like NBC or Amazon’s Prime Video, essentially saying, “Here, you already got the best studio show ready to go. Keep everybody in place.”

“Well, I’ve talked to the guys about everybody signing with my production company,” said Barkley. “Because I have my own production company, and I would love to do that if we lose it. Actually, somebody suggested that to me, to be honest with you, on the internet. ‘So, why don’t Charles Barkley sign these three guys (four guys total) to his production company and sell it?’ I’m like, ‘That’s a great idea.’

That somebody on the internet was actually one of The Danettes and executive producer of The Dan Patrick Show, Paul Pabst. Not only did he mention it on social media, but he did mention it on Patrick’s show in early May. Barkley liked the idea then — and he seemingly liked it even more now.

“But like I said, we’ll just sit back and wait on these people to figure out what they’re going to do,” Barkley continued. “You know, my two favorite wines are Inglenook and Opus. And these clowns I work for, they turned us into Ripple, Boone’s Farm and Thunderbird. We got the best studio show. And it’s so funny, we just won the best studio show. But these fools turn us from Inglenook and Opus into damn Boone’s Farm and Ripple. It’s crazy.”

It’s interesting that Barkley has considered producing Inside the NBA independently, and that idea is something that’s been broached to him before. While Barkley is clearly angered by what’s transpired here, this opens the door for him to steer the ship creatively and potentially reap the financial rewards of their success.

Not that’s what was the desired outcome, but it certainly beats breaking up the best studio show in sports.

[The Dan Patrick Show]

About Sam Neumann

Since the beginning of 2023, Sam has been a staff writer for Awful Announcing and The Comeback. A 2021 graduate of Temple University, Sam is a Charlotte native, who currently calls Greenville, South Carolina his home. He also has a love/hate relationship with the New York Mets and Jets.