Inside the NBA on TNT pregame show is the king of pregame shows. You can try and dispute that, but there’s really no reason to do so. And a big reason why it’s the king of pregame shows is because of Charles Barkley.
Barkley has flourished in his role for the five-time Emmy award winning show and has become one of the biggest stars in sports broadcasting. But according to Richard Deitsch of Sports Illustrated, Barkley has become increasingly disengaged with his gig at TNT and he’s contemplating walking away from it.
“I love my job,” Barkley said. “I love the people I work with. And I’m going to try to do things to keep me engaged. But I have four years left on my current deal and to be honest with you, it’s going to be a struggle for me to make it for the whole four years. I really don’t know how much longer I’m going to do this. I need something more, or something else to do to be honest with you.”
“I only thought I would do this for three or four years but now I have been doing it for 13 years,” Barkley said. “When I got to my fifth year of broadcasting I was like ‘OK, I’ll do this a couple of more years.’ But now I’m like, ‘Dude, you have been doing this for 13 years and if I make it to the end of the contract it will be 17 years.’ Seventeen years is a long time. It’s a lifetime in broadcasting. I personally have to figure out the next challenge for me.”
That next challenge may be doing color for games, which Barkley got a taste of last season. And he enjoyed every minute of it.
When I did the game with Kevin and Reggie I had a blast,” Barkley said. “And judging by the feedback we got, I think the fans liked it too. I am excited to do that this year.”
Barkley is scheduled to do two more games this season and it sounds like in order for TNT to keep him, doing color for games may have to be a more frequent part of Barkley’s duties.