Perhaps one of the best aspects of NBA 2K21 are the commentators and analysts they feature within the game. Composed of league favorites like David Aldridge, Kevin Harlan, and Dorris Burke, 2K sports has done a great job of making things feel authentic in that regard.
Though, when talking about commentators, one can’t help but notice a familiar face absent from the game: Charles Barkley, who is one of the four stars featured on TNT’s “Inside The NBA.”
During the pre-game, post-game, and half-time shows, Ernie, Kenny, and Shaq are all included in the game — so why not Chuck?
In a virtual interview with YouTuber Micah Phoenix, the basketball legend explained why has never and will never appear in a 2K game.
“You know, that’s a great question. I’m asked that question a lot. So, they pay those guys to do it and they make 300 million dollars a year. And they pay the guys chump change and I’m like ‘nahI’m not doing that.’ I said ‘this is what I’ll do. Just giving me some money doesn’t help anyone. Give the old retired players a million dollars and I’ll be in the video game.’ They’re like, ‘well we’re gonna pay you the same thing we pay others.’ I said ‘I’m not like the others.’
These other guys, I don’t even know why they’re taking that money cause y’all make 300 million dollars a year, y’all not helping the old, retired players. I’m talking about guys older than me, too, just for the record. So they piss me off every year, they call me every year and say ‘hey, have you changed your mind?’ I said ‘why in the world do you think I’m gonna change my mind? I told you, give the retired players a million dollars a year.
That’s why I’m not in the video game, cause they won’t give money to the retired players.”
Great Interview with Charles Barkley on why he chooses not to be in NBA 2K21 and any future/past 2K’s. pic.twitter.com/jiXpj6lHHF
— Micah Phoenix🔥🏀 (@Blaze_4real) September 10, 2020
If this is true, it means 2K is unwilling to donate less than 1% of their gross revenue to help older, retired players who may need some help financially.
It’s not a good look, especially when you consider how much the company has monetized its game in recent years.
But, alas, whoever is making the decisions there has deemed it unnecessary and that’s probably not going to change.
For those hoping to see Barkley in the next installment of the series, you probably shouldn’t get your hopes up.