During his days on the basketball court, Charles Barkley was one of the fiercest competitors in the NBA. Barkley was part of the historic 1984 Draft class and became one of the standouts from that group along with Michael Jordan and Hakeem Olajuwon.
Barkley played for three teams during his NBA career but found the most success in Phoenix. There he was the MVP in 1993, and led the Phoenix Suns to the NBA Finals, only to be bested by Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls.
While some people feel that Jordan should also have won MVP, Barkley says he and the Suns had the best record, and he deserved to win it over MJ. But it is well known that despite these comments, the two were good friends off the court, and had a lot of love and respect for each other.
This respect did not stop them from competing against each other. Their friendship came second behind their desire to win. This is why Jordan and Barkley would probably forgive each other for things that happen on the court during the heat of the game.
Barkley once got supremely annoyed with the referees and accused them of being biased towards Michael Jordan. During a game between the Houston Rockets and the Chicago Bulls in 1997, Rockets player Rodrick Rhodes tried to drive to the basket, only to be stopped and blocked by Michael Jordan.
Barkley thought that a foul should have been called on Jordan, as he physically obstructed Rhodes. He even went to the referees and told them that just because he is Michael Jordan does not mean that they don't call the foul. MJ was visibly annoyed by the suggestion and even talked to Barkley about it.
"I know he's Michael Jordan but that's a foul!"
MJ and Barkley remained friends despite this incident for a long time. But that friendship is no longer there, as Barkley explained that Jordan is still angry with him for criticizing his job as the owner of the Charlotte Hornets.
Barkley was fearless on the court and did not care who he called out if it got him and his team success. He's brought this fearless approach to his analyst career, and regularly calls out players on 'Inside The NBA'.
Most recently, he roasted Zion Williamson for putting on weight. So whether he is on the court or off the court, Barkley is ready to go at NBA players when he thinks they're in the wrong.