Kyrie Irving’s monstrous game in Tuesday’s win against the Boston Celtics, Charles Barkley’s maroon suit selection on Tuesday along with he and Shaq arguing caught my eye. It all somehow tied into my observation of the play of the Boston Celtics’ Jaylen Brown.
Firstly, on Tuesday, Charles and Shaq did a ton of bickering on camera. Can’t lie, it was very funny, but made you wonder what was serious and what wasn’t
As per Yahoo Sports’ Dan Devine:
In discussing whether or not Game 5 was a “must-win” game for a Cavaliers team that heads back to Boston with a 3-1 lead, just one win away from a third straight trip to the Finals to take on the Western Conference champions (and their now-bitter rival) Golden State Warriors, O’Neal made the point that it would be in Cleveland’s best interests not to “mess around,” lay another egg and give the Celtics new life. A reasonable point!
And then, the bit:
“Chuck, you have no idea what we’re talking about, because you’ve only been to the Finals once,” said O’Neal, noting that Barkley only played for a championship once, when his Phoenix Suns fell to Michael Jordan’s Chicago Bulls in the 1993 NBA Finals.
“I wasn’t riding on Dwyane Wade and Kobe’s coattails,” Barkley barked back, giving Shaq short shrift for his contributions on the Los Angeles Lakers teams that three-peated from 2000 through 2002, and the Miami Heat squad that won it all in 2006.
“Doesn’t matter, Chuck,” O’Neal said. “I got the same thing you got, and I passed you up 10 years ago.”
“I’m just letting you know,” Barkley said, as O’Neal repeated “Anyway” in an unsuccessful attempt to get the last word. “If I had been riding on Kobe’s coattails, and Dwyane Wade’s … and [Heat center] Alonzo Mourning’s, too, I forgot about him. And [Lakers forward] Rick Fox. Derek Fisher.”
“People question why you’re in the Hall of Fame anyway,” Shaq replied. “Bum.”
The two began smiling and laughing as Smith attempted to step in. Host Ernie Johnson, who had taken the opportunity to eat some macaroni and cheese while his two bookend big men squabbled, retook the reins and asked why the back-and-forth had gotten so personal so quickly.
“Because Chuck’s always interrupting,” Shaq said. “Don’t interrupt me, Chuck. I’m going to punch you right in your face one time, I’m telling you.”
Barkley responded by saying he’d “throw one of these chicken wings at [Shaq’s] fat ass.” Things then got back to normal — well, as normal as things get when you’re dealing with threats of hurled chicken wings, and jokes about barbecue-sauce-colored suits — before Shaq offered one more reminder that Barkley had only been to the Finals once.
The segment moved on.
Hope they worked out their differences before tonight’s Game 5.
Secondly, Charles Barkley‘s suit selection on Tuesday was maroon; it took me back to him being selected by the Philadelphia 76ers in the 1984 NBA Draft. The suit he wore Tuesday was more tailored; and even though someone teased Barkley by saying that if he spilled Merlot wine on his suit, no one would noticed, I was intrigued.
When Barkley appeared on Scoop B Radio last month, we chatted about that suit selection, with Chuck telling me: “Man, burgundy was my favorite color.”
“Well when you’re poor, you get that one suit and that was it. You know, first of all I don’t mind growing up poor it just made me a better person, but man burgundy was my favorite color. I wanted to have a nice suit for the draft and we went out and got it. Listen let me tell you something, that bring back some good memories,” said Barkley. “You know the draft was a start of my amazing journey through life, and I’ve had an amazing life and it all started that night.”
While I was observing Charles’ attire in between he and Shaq’s bickering, I started reflecting on the undermanned Boston Celtics and the fact that Jaylen Brown is 20 years old!
In fact, Brown is literally one month younger than my baby sister, Kandace. I felt old!
I also thought about how fast Brown has grown in the past year. The third pick in last year’s NBA Draft, the guy is legitimately playing against the NBA World Champion Cleveland Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference Finals as a rookie and holding his own.
Brown averaged 6.6 points and 2.8 rebounds in 17.2 minutes per game during the regular season. Through 16 postseason appearances, the 20-year-old is averaging 4.9 points and 2.3 boards on 47.1 percent shooting from the field, including 21.7 percent from three.
My mind was wandering towards Brown though because his draft attire last year reminded me so much of a cross between Charles Barkley’s suit with a splash of Hakeem Olajuwon’s when the Houston Rockets drafted him in 1984. Brown’s tie and blazer combo of Brown’s was reminiscent on point!
What made you pick that one out, J? “I had thousands of suits to choose from and I’m super meticulous and picky,” Brown told me. “So I had to make sure I did my due diligence on suits so it took me a while.”
“This is the one that kind of popped out a lot of young guys tend to go with flashy colors or fluorescent patterns or floral patterns I just wanted to keep it simple and classy, timeless but definitely classy I wanted to do it like that because it matches my personality so I expressed my personality through my suit.”
Bleacher Report’s Adam Wells reported yesterday that the Celtics may be without Brown for Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Thursday night. ESPN.com’s Chris Forsberg, reports that Brown is officially questionable for the elimination game due to a right hip pointer.
The Celtics have a bright future. They’ve got the first pick in this year’s NBA Draft, a good coach in Brad Stevens, a bench full of depth and the ever stylish Jaylen Brown.
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