Charles Barkley to Retire from TV After Next NBA Season

Barkley reveals plans amid NBA broadcast rights turbulence

by Zain ul Abedin
Charles Barkley to Retire from TV After Next NBA Season
© Mike Coppola/Getty Images

Charles Barkley, the legendary basketball player and long-standing TNT broadcaster, has announced his retirement from television following the 2024-25 NBA season. The announcement, made during the post-game coverage of NBA Finals Game 4, marks the end of an era for one of the sport's most iconic voices.

Barkley's decision comes at a pivotal moment, as rumors swirl about a potential shift in NBA broadcasting rights from Warner Bros. Discovery, the parent company of TNT, to NBC. Despite this, Barkley affirmed his commitment to TNT for his final season, dismissing any speculation of him joining another network.

In his heartfelt announcement, Barkley expressed deep gratitude towards the NBA community and his colleagues at TNT. "I just want to say thank you to my NBA family. You guys have been great to me," he stated. Emphasizing his readiness to step away, he shared his plans to pass the torch to fellow analysts such as Jamal Crawford, Vince Carter, or Steve Smith.

Barkley's Impact and Concerns

Barkley, a multiple Emmy winner, has been a fixture on TNT's 'Inside the NBA' since 2000, bringing his unique blend of insight and humor to millions of viewers. His presence has not only elevated the show but has also played a significant role in shaping the network's NBA coverage.

The potential loss of NBA rights by Warner Bros. Discovery could have significant implications, including the loss of about 200 jobs, a concern that Barkley voiced earlier. "It just sucks right now for the people I work with," he commented, reflecting on the potential upheaval within the company.

As Barkley approaches his 62nd birthday, he remains philosophical about his future, looking forward to more personal time. "I don’t even look at it as getting fired. I look at it like, ‘Damn, I get to play more golf?!’.

," he remarked, showcasing his ever-present wit and optimism about life beyond television. Meanwhile, the NBA Finals continue, with the Boston Celtics leading the series against the Dallas Mavericks. As the 2024-25 NBA season looms, it will not only be a significant one for the league but also a bittersweet finale for one of its most beloved commentators.