Charles Barkley and Shaq are two hilarious dudes…..
And Barkley let rip last night on TNT as the topic turned to Jussie Smollett and Barkley got on a roll.
As is often the case with TNT’s Inside the NBA, basketball took a backseat after Charles Barkley went off script, this time about the controversy surrounding Empire actor Jussie Smollett.
During halftime of TNT’s coverage of the Houston Rockets’ match-up with the Los Angeles Lakers, Barkley and his Inside the NBA colleagues were discussing predictions they’ve made throughout the season, which are catalogued on post-it notes hanging on the wall of show’s expansive set.
But when Kenny Smith asked Ernie Johnson which prediction has no chance of happening, Barkley surprised the crew by wildly swerving away from basketball to bring up the arrest of Smollett, who is accused of hiring two men to stage an attack on himself that he would later blame on MAGA-hat-wearing supporters of President Donald Trump.
“Two black guys beating a black guy up,” Barkley replied, sending co-host Shaquille O’Neal and several members of the crew into laughing fits.
“I can’t believe you, Chuck,” Johnson dryly replied.
Barkley, egged on by O’Neal, went on for several minutes, roasting Smollett for allegedly writing a $3,500 check to the Osundario brothers, who were originally considered suspects but ultimately release after telling police they were paid to fake an attack on the actor.
“Get cash, man!” Barkley exclaimed. “America, do not write checks when you’re committing illegal activities.”
The clip of Barkley quickly went viral on social media early Friday, becoming the top trending topic on Twitter overnight, reaching millions of viewers. Later in the program, the show mocked Smollett further by showing a fake check made out to “Muggers” to purchase “mugging supplies,” giving Barkley one final chance to troll Smollett’s claim he was out at 2 a.m. that night to grab a bite to eat.
“I tell you what though, man. There must be some good damn sandwiches at Subway if you’ve got to go out there at three, four in the morning to get them,” Barkley said, sending O’Neal into another laughing fit. “Shaq, what they got on them sandwiches?!?”
Smollett, who was released by police in Chicago on Thursday on $100,000 bond, and faces a felony charge for disorderly conduct for allegedly filing a false police report. FOX confirmed Smollett returned to work on Thursday.
Here's a summary from the Daily Wire:
The segment starts with co-host Ernie Johnson posting one more post-it note on a wall filled with the team’s various predictions.
Co-host Kenny Smith asks: Ernie, what’s the most ridiculous one over there that’s still living that you would say has no chance of happening?
Barkley answers from the host’s table: Two black guys beating a black guy up.
That triggers Shaq to start cracking up.
The camera shows a close-up of the wall; one note reads: “Chuck: 11/1. The Blazers will have a better record than the Pelicans.” Another reads, “11-29-18. Chuck: The Clippers will not make the playoffs.”
Smith: That’s uh … that’s not on here, man.
Johnson, trying to keep the segment on track: Uh, the Clippers, well, the Clippers will not make the playoffs, and uh —
Shaq, laughing: What kind of hat, Chuck?
Barkley: MAGAS. MAGA hat. MAGA’s hat.
As the camera shows a close-up of some of the post-it notes and Johnson returning from the wall, Johnson, still attempting to keep the show on track, says, “I think that’s probably — I think that’s probably it. Okay. The Lakers will not make the playoffs; the Kings will, is the latest position. Go ahead, Kenny. I can’t believe you, Chuck.”
Shaq: You saying, you saying we can’t write ‘em a check, Chuck? (He starts laughing hard again.)
Barkley: America. America, let me just tell you something.
Smith: What’s that?
Barkley: Do not commit crimes with checks — (Shaq loses it again) C’mon, man, If you're going to break the law, do not write a check. (Shaq is laughing so hard he’s throwing his head back)
Smith: Cause if you’re writing a check, then what?
Shaq, laughing hard: Cash up.
Barkley: Cash, man. I never used an ATM. Now, I heard you can only get $200 out of it.
Shaq, exhausted from laughing: Charles —
Shaq: Charles. Stop. Literally.
Barkley: You gonna make a lot of stops at an ATM?
Shaq, laughing: But you said, Chuck, America, America. (The screen shows a picture of Smollett smiling) Do not write a check when you commit illegal activity.
Johnson: I cannot believe that we completed — (Using a baseball reference) We touched ’em all, right there. Circle the bags. Touch every pillow.
Smith: He just said the Lakers would make the playoffs.
Barkley, repeating as the picture of Smollett is flashed on the screen: America, don’t commit crimes with a check. There’s Jussie; you wasted all that time and money. You know what you should have did? Just went up in Liam Neeson’s neighborhood. He could have solved all your damn problems.