I just read Valsviews' review of Charles Barkley. As soon as I read it, I couldn't help but think of the NBA Superstar's video (see bottom of review). I was a huge fan of Barkley growing up. Not only did the guy have a totally unique and explosive game. The vast majority of the time, he played with serious heart, hustle and intensity - which is why he was able to win a rebounding title, while standing only 6'5" (6'4" by some accounts), and to guard players much taller than he was.
But playing style aside, he had, quite possibly the greatest nickname in sports history ... I ask you, what's better than the "Round Mound of Rebound"? Answer: nothing. In later years, he was given the nickname "The Chuckwagon", which I find to be a great nickanme as well, but The Round Mound has no peers.
While he was and is often controversial, he has a magnetic personality. I personally enjoy the TNT Halftime show with Chuck, Ernie Johnson and Kenny Smith more than the actual game a lot of the time, and that's due almost entirely to Barkley.
This highlight video came from a legendary "NBA Superstars" VHS tape that was released in 1990. The tape highlighted several of the greatest players of all time: Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Michael Jordan, Dominique Wilkins (a contender for the greatest sports nickname ever, award), Isaiah Thomas, etc. Each player's highlights were set to a song that fit the player and his style. While the clip is grainy, it still allows you to appreciate Barkley's ability... his explosiveness off two legs is incredible for such a, ummm, stout guy. The fact that it is set to the incredibly cheezy 80s song "The Warrior" makes it that much better. Some of my favorite sequences include:
The 27 second mark where Barkley crosses over between his legs (breaking the very brittle ankles of Bill Walton), then proceeds to dunk between the entire Celtics team (including Hall of Famers, Robert Parish, Kevin McHale and Bill Walton, all of whom are much, much taller than Barkley).
The 1:04 mark - dunking on Jerome Kersey, followed by "giving" Kersey the ball (while I don't condone poor sportsmanship, this is classic Barkley intimidation)
The 1:13 mark where he stuffs a dunk attempt by Ron Harper (I believe its Harper), then blocks and grabs(!!!) the follow up shot to start a fast break.
From 1:35 to 1:43 where he dunks on the Utah Jazz, then Patrick Ewing, then makes Kareem look old (in Kareem's defense, he was).
We can forget that he played basketball really well. What I love is that he's been able to make a living purely by being a character. Even if his basketball talent wasn't Hall of Fame worthy, he's still one of the most entertaining players to come out of the NBA.
Sir Charles was born as Charles Wade Barkley in Leeds (near Birmingham), Alabama, on the 20th of February 1963. He was raised in both Leeds and its adjacent environs. Childhood was good, and the lad was fondly nicknamed ‘Chuck’. He completed his High School at Leeds (Ala.) where he first showed serious interest in basketball. Despite standing above 5’10” as freshman, he consistently struggled to keep his weight down. Charles drew attention for the first time during one of … more
Charles Wade Barkley (born February 20, 1963) is a former American professional basketball player. Nicknamed "Sir Charles" and "The Round Mound of Rebound" , Barkley established himself as one of the National Basketball Association's (NBA's) most dominating power forwards. He was selected to the All-NBA First Team five times, the All-NBA Second Team five times, and once to the All-NBA Third Team. He earned eleven NBA All-Star Game appearances and was named the All-Star MVP in 1991. In 1993, he was voted the league's Most Valuable Player and during the NBA's 50th anniversary, named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History. He competed in the 1992 and 1996 Olympic games and won two gold medals as a member of the United States' Dream Team. In 2006, Barkley was inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
Barkley was popular with the fans and media and made the NBA's All-Interview Team for his last 13 seasons in the league. He was frequently involved in on- and off-court fights and sometimes stirred national controversy, as in March 1991 when he mistakenly spat on a young girl, and as in 1993 when he declared that sports figures should not be considered role models. Short for a power forward, Barkley used his strength and aggressiveness to become one of the NBA's most dominant rebounders. He was a versatile player who had the ability to score, create plays, and defend. In 2000, he retired as the ...