TNT studio analyst Charles Barkley will make a rare game appearance Thursday night in Oklahoma City, broadcasting the Clippers-Thunder game with Marv Albert, Steve Kerr and reporter David Aldridge. Barkley discussed the Thunder and the NBA in a phone interview last week.
Are you looking forward to getting out of the studio and broadcasting a game in Oklahoma City?
Yeah. I started doing some games last year. I did three or four last year and I'm doing three or four this year. I love the crowd there. We did the Western Conference (finals) a couple of years ago and it was amazing. And I'm looking forward to going back there.
What's it like working in the studio? It seems like you guys have fun.
We have a great time. We have a lot of fun. That's the No. 1 thing we try to do. It's just basketball. We're not saving the world. But we hope that people love the show.
I know you made some disparaging comments about Oklahoma (calling it “nothing but vast wasteland” and “no place for black people”) when the Hornets played here. Have you changed your mind?
I was just having fun. I didn't know they had that many black people there to be honest with you. I was very surprised when I went there. They have got a ton of black people there. Everybody was great. People took it as a joke. Some people try to make things different than they are. I thought the people of Oklahoma treated me great.
What's your opinion of the altercation in the Thunder-Clippers game last week?
That wasn't an altercation. That was two guys who didn't want to fight pushing each other.
Did you think Serge Ibaka and Matt Barnes should have been ejected?
I thought the referee overreacted a little bit.
What did you think about Barnes' comment on Twitter?
I don't think you should be using the “N word” publicly. I use the word. I'm going to continue to use the word. I don't think he should use the word publicly. I think it was more about him calling out his teammates for being soft.
Why do you think the Clippers are soft?
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