Why Does Charles Barkley Despise the New York Knicks?

By Thomas Duffy
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Charles Barkley is one of the most eccentric personalities on television. He is the anchor of a rowdy group of TNT analysts that includes Kenny “The Jet” Smith, Shaquille O’Neal, and Ernie Johnson. Barkley pretty much says whatever he wants, which is clearly illustrated in his most recent rant about Jeff Van Gundy implying that the NBA influences what analysts say on air. “No,” Barkley said in response, “and I wouldn’t listen if they did.”

The outspoken Hall-of-Famer has been consistently tough on the New York Knicks this season.

Before the 2012-13 season tipped off, Barkley called the Knicks “stupid,” for letting Jeremy Lin go in the off-season.

Lin is averaging 10 PPG and 6 APG as a member of the Houston Rockets, and Raymond Felton, Lin’s replacement, is averaging 16 PPG and 6 APG for the Knicks, for $4 million less in 2012-13 alone. That is far from stupid on the part of New York- Felton is playing better than Lin for less money.

Barkley also believes that the Brooklyn Nets are the “best team in New York.” On the topic of the New York’s age, Sir Charles said:

“If it was 2000, I would make the New York Knicks the favorite to win the NBA championship. They must think it’s 1995,” Barkley said, according to Newsday. “It’s 2012. They went out and got 92-year-old Jason Kidd and 92-year-old Marcus Camby.”

Jason Kidd is giving New York close to 30 MPG, and is putting up solid numbers (8 PPG and 3 APG), despite being 39 years old. Say what you will about his age, but Kidd is a productive NBA starter, and is a big reason why the Knicks were able to beat the Nets in the second Clash of the Boroughs; Kidd made a 3PT shot (despite being fouled) with 24 seconds left to put the Knicks up 100-97. Kidd missed the ensuing FT but won the game for New York.

Barkley’s latest comments about New York were downright outrageous.

“Everybody in New York thinks the Knicks are Playboy bunnies, and I have been telling them for years the Knicks are a rabbit,” he said. “They’re closer to a Playboy bunny this year but for the last few years these guys are like, ‘We have a really good team!’ And I say, ‘You really think that?’ And I say, ‘No, they don’t.’ But this is the best team they’ve had in a while.”

“…The best team they’ve had in a while.” Well, after all of that nonsense, Barkley reluctantly admitted that the Knicks, who are the best team in the Eastern Conference at 18-6, are good. That is the first thing he has been right about regarding New York basketball this season.

A broken clock is right twice a day.

Follow Thomas Duffy on Twitter @TD_Knicks for articles, news, and all things NBA.

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