PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — We know how much Howard Eskin despises Sam Hinkie.
When the topic came up during Eskin’s one-hour conversation with Charles Barkley on The Howard Eskin Podcast this week, Barkley actually defended the former 76ers general manager.
“Sam Hinkie, he just was doing what everyone else was doing,” Barkley told Eskin this week. “I have no problem with teams tanking. There’s no sense in winning the extra six games, that’s just stupid. You might as well start from the bottom and build your way up.
Listen: Charles Barkley on the Howard Eskin Podcast
“I’ve always felt like the Sixers got a bad rap with that tanking. If you remember correctly, the San Antonio Spurs tanked to get David Robinson and Tim Duncan. The Miami Heat tanked — if you remember, they traded every single person on their team so they’d have enough money to sign Chris Bosh and LeBron James. Howard, I’ve never understood why everybody was so hard on the 76ers. Everybody has tanked at some point. In fairness, the Sixers weren’t even tanking either. The Sixers just couldn’t get guys healthy. They didn’t really tank Howard, they were just hurt.”
Barkley, who believes Dario Saric should be the rookie of the year, talked about the exciting Sixers’ future with Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid.
“If the Sixers can ever get healthy, they gonna have a ten year window where they’ll have a really good team. But obviously health is important. They gonna get another great pick this year, and there are some great players coming out of the draft this year. If the Sixers can ever get healthy, they would be amazing to watch.”
Barkley and Eskin discussed a myriad of topics, including Barkley’s run-ins with star players like LeBron James. Barkley admitted to getting a call one night from Kobe Bryant, who Barkley says, “went ballistic.”
“One of the reasons I don’t like some reporters, is because I think some of them are punks. What I mean by that is, they have their favorite guys and you could tell how two guys can do the exact same thing and they only criticize the one guy they don’t like. That’s not the right way — that’s not the way you should be.
“I try to talk about the story, not become part of the story,” Barkley said. “These players today are so sensitive. They never step back and say, ‘Is he right?'”
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