Charles Barkley always warned people never to mistake him for a role model. Former teammate Jayson Williams eloquently explains why.
If there was one athlete who’s been living his life his own way with no consideration for public opinion over the past 40 years or so, it’s the NBA fraternity’s beloved Barkley, more popularly known as Chuck, or the Round Mound of Rebound in his playing days.
For he definitely resembled an obese 6’5″ man in comparison to the lean muscle of his NBA competition. But when it came to powering through opponents and imposing his will physically, Sir Charles was second to only MJ.
However, you shouldn’t mistake Barkley’s work ethic to be a blueprint for the modern athlete. The man certainly had his quirks and vices, though they barely ever affected his performances on the court.
“Charles Barkley practiced 2 times in 2 years, sat on a stationary bike eating McDonald’s”: Jayson Williams
Jayson Williams has had a fairly chequered past of his own, especially in his post-NBA career. He attributes some of that to Chuck, whom he cites as a bad influence.
The former 12-year NBA veteran was in an interview with VladTv sometime in 2019. He narrated this extremely quotable, fascinating anecdote involving the Hall of Famer –
“I was on the bench, I played with one of my most favorite people in this world, Charles Barkley, and Charles Oakley. Charles Barkley took me under his wing, which I wish he didn’t.”
“Because at St. John’s, as you remember, I had my children and I had my coach second. I had a structure. I knew I had to be in it all the time. ”
“I remember going to my first practice with Charles Barkley at the time – who didn’t practice, who never practiced! In 2 years, he practiced twice. He used to come in and get on the stationary bike and ride 1 mile an hour.”
“He’d take a McDonald’s, the pot cakes and sausages and the butter and the syrup and put it in like a tortila and squish it. And all of this be coming out, looking so good, especially when you’re hungover.”
“And he’d be eating it, and he’d be like ‘Y’all, run the floor!’ while he’d be peddling 1mph. He’d be sitting on the side during practice saying ‘That’s why we ain’t never gonna be s***, because we don’t run the floor.”