“Charles Barkley Almost Signed With NBC in 2000!”: Ernie Johnson Recalled How $50 Million NBA Legend Changed His Heart at the Last Minute

Nithin Joseph
|Published 17/11/2022

The Inside the NBA crew is perhaps the most iconic group in the history of basketball talk shows. The combination of Ernie Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, Kenny Smith, and Charles Barkley has entertained many.

The band began getting together in 1998 when Kenny The Jet Smith joined Turner Sports. Two years later, Sir Charles would enter the fold before the team was finally complete in 2011 after Shaq signed up.

However, we may have never seen the four of them together. After all, Chuck was seconds away from joining NBC before TNT changed his mind.

Also Read: Shaquille O’Neal Hilariously Refused To Pay Charles Barkley $10,000 Despite National TV Bet

Charles Barkley nearly joined NBC before accepting TNT’s offer in 2000

In the year 2000, Charles Barkley officially retired from the NBA. With his basketball career behind him, many wondered what was next for Sir Charles.

According to Ernie Johnson, a role in broadcasting was always on the cards. The only question was, where? Ernie claimed that Chuck was close to joining NBC on the All the Smoke podcast.

Luckily for NBA fans worldwide, the Round Mound of Rebound didn’t sign the contract before coming to Atlanta. Turner Sports took him out for a night that would ultimately change Chuck’s mind.

It has been a wonderful relationship ever since, with Charles working behind the Inside the NBA desk for 22 years on the trot.

Chuck recently signed a huge 10-year $200 million deal to stay with Inside the NBA

It has been a long and fruitful relationship between Barkley and TNT. One that will now continue for 10 more years at least. After all, the Round Mound of Rebound just signed a massive $200 million deal to stay with Inside the NBA.

A huge move for Turner Sports and an equally huge one for Sir Charles himself. Hopefully, we will always see Chuck’s hilarious personality on TNT.

Also Read: Having Received a $20,000 Bribe From Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley Later Accepted MJ as the Best Player in the World

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About the author
Nithin Joseph

Nithin Joseph

Sports has been a huge part of Nithin's life ever since he was 10 years old. He is currently pursuing his MBA in Sports Management and as such has attempted to immerse himself in a variety of professional sports and sports leagues like the Premier League, NBA, and NFL. Having previously worked as a WWE content writer, Nithin now writes about the NBA, being a supporter of the Miami Heat and basketball as a sport.

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