Charles Barkley was really unhappy with LeBron James giving up the fight against the Golden State Warriors in the 2018 NBA Finals.
For most viewers, the peak of the GOAT debate between Michael Jordan and LeBron James was in 2018. This was at the time of LeBron’s fairytale run to the Finals with a basement Cavs team.
James averaged roughly 34 points, 9 rebounds and 9 assists over 22 playoff games. Many people believe his was the greatest carry job they’ve seen in their lifetime – certainly up there with Allen Iverson in 2001 and Hakeem Olajuwon in 1994.
Chuck, however, saw things differently. All through the playoff run, he kept talking about how James and co were battling worse teams. JR’s antics in the NBA Finals prevented James from recording an Iverson-like Game 1.
Charles Barkley roasts LeBron James for subpar Finals outings
The Cavs bowed out unceremoniously out of the Finals by the largest losing margin in NBA history in 2018. Chuck was in no gaming mood post-game, noting how James had given up on his team:
“Any media person I see in my life who tries to argue that LeBron James is as great as Michael Jordan, I’m just going to slap the hell out of them – right on the spot. Right on the f***ing spot, no questions asked.”
“The next person who walks up to me and says ‘LeBron James is amazing, as good as Michael Jordan’ or ‘competes like Michael Jordan’, I’m just going to slap the hell out of them. Right on the spot. And I’m going to take my chances with the judicial system.”
Don’t bring up the LeBron vs. MJ debate to Chuck anymore 😳
— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) June 9, 2018
Do you think LeBron James gave up in that Finals series? And if you think he did, do you think it was justified? Does it affect his legacy in any way in your eyes?
Most of us are inclined to give James a pass. We’re sure that Michael Jordan might have physically imploded after seeing JR Smith commit that blunder.