Charles Barkley just made a big decision when it comes to his future with the TNT show Inside the NBA. On Monday, Warner Bros. Discovery Sports announced that Barkley signed a new contract with the NBA pregame show that has earned 17 Sports Emmy Awards during its run. The announcement also revealed that Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O'Neal signed new contracts.
"Our partnership with the NBA is very important to us and this long-term agreement with the Inside the NBA team is recognition of their significance to that relationship," Luis Silberwasser, Chairman and CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery Sports, said in a statement. "Inside the NBA epitomizes the creativity and innovative spirit we've established throughout our successful, long-standing legacy with the league."
Warner Bros. Discovery has signed long-term contract extensions with the four stars of TNT's Inside the NBA:— Front Office Sports (@FOS) October 17, 2022
▪️ Shaquille O'Neal
▪️ Ernie Johnson
▪️ Kenny Smith
▪️ Charles Barkley
The new deals run for 10 years, per @MMcCarthyREV. pic.twitter.com/h3NXdWrDFk
The details of the contracts were not revealed, but Barkley seems to love the new deal. "We're all a big family. Ernie, Kenny and Shaquille are brothers to me, and I wouldn't still be here if it wasn't for them and all the amazing people who work on our show," Barkley said. "I'm not gonna lie, though, this is a life-altering deal…and I'm blessed to be able to do live television for a living."
According to Andrew Marchand of the New York Post (per Market Watch), Barkley signed a 10-year contract extension worth over $100 million and could hit $200 million. This new deal comes not too long after Barkley said he was planning to retire from broadcasting in the next two years.
"It's been a great, great thing," Barkley said in a conference call with reporters earlier this year. "I love Ernie, Kenny, Shaq and everybody we work with. But I just don't feel the need to work until the day I die. I don't, man. I'll be 61 years old if I finish out my contract. And I don't want to die on TV. I want to die on the golf course or somewhere fishing. I don't want to be sitting inside over [by] fat-ass Shaq [waiting] to drop dead."
Barkley, 59, has been with TNT since 2000 and has won four Sports Emmy Awards during his career. He played in the NBA from 1984-2000 and was selected to the All-Star team 11 times, won the MVP Award in 1993 and was named to the All-NBA team 11 times.