LeBron James, sometimes referred to as King James, is once again an NBA all-star. But Charles Barkley is seeing James more of a queen these days.
James was named Thursday as the East captain for the player draft for the 2018 All-Star Game to be played Feb. 18, but he didn't win the player vote. The Milwaukee Bucks' Giannis Antetokounmpo narrowly edged out James in the player vote portion.
When the results were announced on TNT's Inside the NBA, Barkley said he wasn't surprised that Antetokounmpo had more player votes than LeBron. Barkley believes players don't like James' "drama queen" personality.
"I'm not at all because I think the players like Greek Freak's personality better," Barkley said. "LeBron is a great player and a great guy, but he's a drama queen."
Shaquille O'Neal, Ernie Johnson and Kenny Smith weren't sure what Barkley even meant. Barkley stood by his opinion that LeBron's personality affected the players' votes more than basketball skills.
O'Neal disagreed with Barkley, noting that players' votes should consider the best player on the court, not personality.
"This is basketball. It's got nothing to do with personalities," O'Neal said.
But Barkley pressed on.
"He's passive aggressive. He's got a passive-aggressive personality," Barkley added.
James, who was voted to his 14th consecutive All-Star Game, will get the first overall pick in the inaugural All-Star Game draft, winning that right by getting the most overall votes. James and Stephen Curry were announced as the overall winners in the East and West.
It's his night
ESPN NBA Countdown's Jalen Rose told fellow analyst Paul Pierce that he was "petty" to ask the Boston Celtics to scrap the team's video tribute for Isaiah Thomas scheduled for the same night as his jersey retirement.
The NBA's latest conflict heated up when Pierce told ESPN.com's Jackie MacMullan and Chris Forsberg that he asked Celtics President Danny Ainge to keep Feb. 11's game against the Cleveland Cavaliers (Thomas' current team) focused on his ceremony.
"[Thomas] had a shot to be honored," said Pierce, referring to the Jan. 3 game between the Celtics and Cavaliers at TD Garden in which Thomas was hurt and couldn't play. "You came to Boston. Whether you are playing or not, you should have had your tribute then. I just don't see how, if someone is having a jersey retirement, they're going to be running other tributes for other players."
Thomas also requested that the Celtics dedicate the evening solely to Pierce.
"I'd like to thank the Celtics for their gracious offer to play a video tribute on Feb 11th celebrating my 3yrs in Boston. But since it appears this has caused some controversy w/ Paul Pierce's night I'd ask the Celtics instead to focus all of their attention on #34's career," Thomas tweeted Tuesday.
On Wednesday night, Pierce addressed the issue with the rest of ESPN's NBA Countdown crew. Rose cited Thomas leading Boston to last year's Eastern Conference finals after his sister's death as a reason Pierce should have shared the spotlight.
"Can I tell you something about your birthday?" Rose said to accentuate his point. "It ain't only your birthday."
How many seasons did Paul Pierce play with the Boston Celtics, who drafted him with the 10th overall pick of the 1998 NBA Draft?
Pierce played 15 seasons with the Celtics (1998-2013).
Sports on 01/20/2018
Print Headline: Barkley says personality hurt LeBron