Charles Barkley doubles down on Klay Thompson’s critical comments

Believe it or not Charles Barclay is not holding back.

Hall of Fame player and current TNT analyst on Tuesday doubled down on his critical comments about Warriors star Klay Thompson.

“I was disappointed that he took it so personally,” Barkley said on “Inside the NBA” after the nationally televised game between the Phoenix Suns and Minnesota Timberwolves. “I said a few years ago that I thought he was the best two-way guard in the NBA. But because of age and injuries, he’s not the same player. I didn’t say he was a tramp. I’m saying he’s not the same player.”

At that point, host Ernie Johnson asked Barkley if he expected Thompson to be the same player.

“No, but I was talking about what I was seeing, back to the Finals,” Barkley said. “When I came back to the finals last year, he said he…he said give him time. No, when you get older, time isn’t your friend. I love Clay and that’s what bothered me. I love that kid. I love everything about him. Like I said, I used to I say this guy is the best two-way guard in the NBA but because of his age and injury, he’s not the same guy. I didn’t deserve the curse the last two years in the NBA.”

Fellow analyst Kenny Smith came to Thompson’s defense and tried to explain what the five-time NBA All-Star said when he finished a recent press conference by admitting he had been hurt by Barkley’s comments and asking for some time to get back on track.

“That’s what he’s saying,” Smith said. “I understand what you said.” “But to me, you’re putting him here in the present sort of. What he’s saying is that he’s on an upward trajectory and he needs time to get to that point to the point of stability where he is. So you’re judging him today and not judging him where he feels like he’s going to be.”

Later in the four-minute conversation, Shaquille O’Neal also tried to protect Thompson.

“I think a lot of guys, for what he did and how he did it, they would have liked more respect,” Shack said.

“Shack, we have to do our job,” Barclay said in response.

“I just say what I think,” Shaq said. “I think he would have liked a little more respect. Like he said, give him some time to come back, and then if I don’t come back in time for the game, maybe you can make that comment. But the season has just started…”

“Men with these two grave wounds, they will grow old,” Barclay said. “When I say he was the best two-way goalkeeper in the NBA, those days are gone. He can still be a heck of a player in the NBA, and Ernie, we’re all getting older, which is nothing wrong with that, but you factor in those two injuries. That’s the only point I’ve been trying to make.”

Thompson got off to a slow start to the 2022-23 season, despite playing one of his best games of the season in the Warriors’ 116-109 loss to the Miami Heat on Tuesday.

After scoring 19 points against the Heat, Thompson has averaged 13.3 points in seven games this season.

But after the Warriors defeated the Heat on October 27, Thompson spent the last 90 seconds of his post-match press conference calling out Barkley with his initial comments that Thompson and Draymond Green were slipping at this point in their careers.

“I have one thing to say,” Thompson said last week. “So it hurts when someone like Charles Barkley says, with his platform, that you’re not the same player before the injuries you had. It’s like ‘No, duh, man.’ Years in a row, like. You tore your ACL and Achilles in successive years and what I still helped the team win the championship. It hurts to hear that because I made a terrifying effort to get back to this point. It’s hard to even put into words what I had to do to be the player I am today.

“I’ve played 55 and 57 games in three years. Give me some amazing time to get that back. To hear someone say ‘Oh, he’s not the same player he was before the injuries.’ Like, duh. Who’s going through that and coming back… I don’t know, my heart just hurt hearing that. But you know, I’m going to absorb it and it will fuel me even better. I’m so proud of what we accomplished last year and I feel like I was a huge part of it. I’m not going to let these injuries go. She’s a pillar for me. I’m going to have a great year. You can bet that.”

RELATED: Zack Lowe defends Clay against Barkley with epic rants

The Warriors consisted of eight matches in one season. Thompson played in seven of them having not played in any minor basketball over the summer and only appeared in one game before the start of the season. He is a known slow player and is 100% convinced that he will return to the All-Star level at some point. When that is up to him.

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