Charles Barkley Slams NBA Team for Lackluster Performance

Barkley questions Celtics' effort in recent NBA matchups

by Faizan Chaudhary
Charles Barkley Slams NBA Team for Lackluster Performance
© Megan Briggs/Getty Images

In a week marked by candid commentary, NBA legend Charles Barkley delivered a sharp critique of the Boston Celtics' recent performances, particularly targeting stars Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown for their lackluster effort.

During the Celtics' 118-109 loss to the New York Knicks at TD Garden, Barkley voiced his disappointment vividly on NBA on TNT, emphasizing the duo's lackadaisical approach in the game's crucial moments. Barkley's frustration boiled over when discussing a key play just before halftime, where neither Tatum nor Brown managed to prevent Knicks guard OG Anunoby from pushing his team's lead further.

This moment seemed to encapsulate the Celtics' struggles, sparking Barkley's pointed remarks. "Shaq asked me earlier if Tatum and Brown should play. If they’re going to play like that, they shouldn’t play at all," Barkley stated, expressing his dismay to co-host Ernie Johnson.

Barkley's Persistent Critique The criticism didn't end there. Barkley revisited the Celtics' previous game against the Milwaukee Bucks a disappointing 104-91 defeat to further illustrate his point. He highlighted an astonishing stat from the game: "They went an entire game without shooting a free throw," Barkley marveled, underscoring the passivity in their play.

"And tonight, they’re just kind of going through the motions. I know they’re going to finish with the best record, but, man, you can’t just turn it off and turn it on again." The Hall of Famer’s scathing review came on the heels of another colorful take earlier in the week when he criticized individuals for their fixation on the recent solar eclipse, branding them "idiots." Post-game, Jaylen Brown took the criticism to heart, acknowledging the team's recent difficulties.

"We got out-toughed the last two games and haven’t played to our standard," Brown conceded. He remained optimistic, however, about the team's ability to bounce back, especially with the playoffs looming: "The game has shifted and it’s going to shift even more in the playoffs." As the Celtics gear up to face the Charlotte Hornets at TD Garden tonight, all eyes will be on the team to see if they can translate these harsh lessons into a stronger, more consistent performance.

With the playoffs fast approaching, the urgency to refine their game is paramount, and tonight's matchup will be a critical test of their resilience and ability to adjust under pressure.

Charles Barkley Celtics