ESPN's analyst Stephen A. Smith has reacted to Charles Barkley saying his relationship with Michael Jordan won't experience any improvement in the near future. Barkley explained that given the type of people Mike has hired during his time as owner of the Charlotte Hornets, he'll never be successful as general manager.
“The thing that bothered me the most about that whole thing, I don’t think that I said anything that bad,” Barkley said. “I’m pretty sure I said, ‘As much as I love Michael, until he stops hiring them kiss-asses, and his best friends, he’s never going to be successful as a general manager.’ And I remember pretty much verbatim I said that. And the thing that really pissed me off about it later is Phil Jackson said the exact same thing.”
Stephen A. gave his take about the situation, responding to Barkley's claims about Jordan and their friendship.
"Michael Jordan doesn't give a damn what you say if you have a relationship with him, and tell him to his face, if you have a conversation with him about it. In other words, if you have a relationship with him, he shouldn't find out what the hell you're saying on national television, that was my big issue with Charles Barkley," Smith said.
He added that Barkley not only talked about Jordan but some of his best friends. Barkley was one of them and Smith believes that given that status, he would have handled things differently than Barkley did.
"When you're talking about people, I'm not gonna hesitate to call somebody if I'm talking about them, I'm gonna make sure that I talk to them. If I have a personal relationship with them, I'm gonna do everything that I can to talk to them personally first to give them the heads up, not to manipulate what I'm gonna say to inform them of what the hell I'm gonna say and to also hear their response before I open my mind. Personal relationships definitely warrant that and I don't believe that Charles Barkley handled that correctly."
We'll never understand the position Barkley put himself in this situation and the way he handled this. However, according to Smith, he didn't do things right, more so knowing that he was friends with Jordan. Still, Chuck doesn't believe anything he says and does will change his situation with His Airness.