Charles Barkley was born on February 20, 1963 in Leeds, Alabama. When Barkley was a kid he played football and basketball. As a high school player at Leeds High School, Barkley averaged 18 points and 17 rebounds per game during his senior year. He was recruited by the University of Alabama but never attended college; instead choosing to make himself available for the 1984 NBA Draft where he was selected 5th overall by the Philadelphia 76ers (with whom he started his career playing alongside Julius Erving).
Charles Barkley is known for his larger than life personality, but he has the skill to back it up. The Hall of Famer won an MVP award and ranks 8th all-time in points scored. He also nabbed four All-Star game appearances and four All-NBA selections throughout his illustrious career.
Charles Barkley’s Personal Life
Barkley had been married and divorced 4 times. His first marriage lasted from 1988-1990; during which time they had twin daughters together (Christian and Chandler) who were born in 1989. In 1993, he married Maureen Blumhardt; they would divorce in 1999. He was married to Maureen again briefly in 2000, but the couple divorced again that same year. On August 15, 2008 Barkley married his fourth wife (with whom he has one son) named Ma Belle.
He will always be remembered as one of the best power forwards ever to play the game of basketball, thanks to his strong inside presence matched with a deadly outside shot. ‘Sir Charles’, as he is now known after receiving a knighthood by Ireland’s Prince Charles in 2001, made history when he became just one of three players (alongside Jerry Lucas and Oscar Robertson) to win the NBA MVP, All-Star Game MVP, and All-NBA First Team honors in the same season (1991/92).
With some of his many distinctions and titles under his belt, Barkley will never be overlooked when people discuss the best players to ever grace a basketball court. He is one of six players in history to record over 20,000 points, 10,000 rebounds and 4,000 assists.
Even though he may be retired from basketball now has not stopped him from staying connected to the sport he loves so much. Recently on ESPN’s Sports nation, it was “Charles Barkley” week where fans could send questions via Twitter for Sir Charles himself. Among the topics that kept popping up was his thoughts on LeBron James and the Miami Heat. The results of the Twitter poll showed that 90% of fans believed that LeBron James was mentally weak, a notion Barkley completely disagreed with.
“LeBron James is going to be one of these guys who is going to be talked about 20 years from now as one of the best players ever.” he said in his recent blog for NBA .com, adding “He’s got everything you need to be a great player except for a jump shot.”
Charles Barkley may not have been typical basketball player due to his larger than life personality but nothing could even come close to comparing him as an entertainer. No matter what anyone says or does to try and take away from what Charles has achieved no one can deny that he is one of the best basketball players to ever play the game and will be remember for generations to come.
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Charles Barkley’s Net Worth:
As of 2021 it is estimated that Charles Barkley’s net worth is $40 million. His salary pales in comparison to the earnings of other players who are considered to be some of the all-time greats; for example, Michael Jordan earned over $90 million during his NBA career (not including endorsement deals etc.).
Today Charles Barkley continues to earn money through various types of endorsements and sponsorships, he also has a huge number of financial investments which include several restaurants across Alabama. He had even joked about being illiterate while promoting his own reading program at schools, Barkley Books Before Bedtime, which included an educational video game released in 2006 by Electronic Arts.
Charles was moved to the Houston Rockets in 1996, and things didn’t go well initially. Due to a brawl with Charles Oakley during a preseason game, he was banned for the season’s first game. He continued excruciating back discomfort and was forced to sit out 14 of 67 games. But he did get to the position of second-leading scorer for the squad.
The Rockets reached the championship game with a 57-25 record, but the Utah Jazz prevailed. He was hampered by discomfort and injury, and the 1999–2000 NBA season ended up being his last. He received a standing ovation as he left the floor on April 19, 2000, and then promptly announced his retirement, capping a 16-year Hall of Fame career.
Books before Bedtime
In 2006, Electronic Arts created an educational video game for children called “Charles Barkley’s Shut Up and Jam!” The premise of the game involves sports trivia questions which increase in difficulty as the player advances through levels; ultimately challenging players to shut up and jam by correctly answering questions about different aspects of basketball. This was just one example of many endorsements that Charles Barkley took part in throughout his career which also included being featured in TV commercials for Pizza Hut, TWA, Comcast, Buick and more.