Charles Barkley is ready to make up with Michael Jordan. The two Basketball Hall of Famers were close friends, but when Barkley, who is an NBA analyst for Turner Sports, made comments about how Jordan was running the Charlotte Bobcats franchise, that's when things started to deteriorate. Barkley was on the Waddle and Silvy Show on ESPN 1000 in Chicago this week and said he's willing to talk to Jordan and get back to being good friends, but he doesn't think that's going to happen anytime soon.
"The guy was like a brother to me for, shoot, 20-something years," Barkley said. "At least 20-something years. And I do, I feel sadness. But to me he's still the greatest basketball player ever. I wish him nothing but the best. But, there's nothing I can do about it, brother." Barkley's comments come on the heels of the latest episode of Jordan's docuseries, The Last Dance airing on ESPN. In the episode, the Chicago Bulls beat the Phoenix Suns in the 1993 NBA Finals. Jordan was named Finals MVP, but Barkley was named league MVP. When Barkley made the comments about Jordan and the Bobcats it was eight years ago on the same show.
"I think the biggest problem has been I don't know if he has hired enough people around him who he will listen to," Barkley said back in 2012. "One thing about being famous is the people around you, you pay all their bills so they very rarely disagree with you because they want you to pick up the check. They want to fly around on your private jet so they never disagree with you. I don't think Michael has hired enough people around him who will disagree. I love Michael, but he just has not done a good job. Even though he is one of my great friends, I can't get on here and tell you he's done a great job. He has not done a great job, plain and simple."
Barkley remembers what he said about Jordan and doesn't believe it was anything too harsh. He also said Jordan's former coach, Phil Jackson, said the same thing, but Jordan still talks to him.
"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."