1. Ultimately, Charles Barkley’s situation with LIV Golf and Turner Sports ended as it should, with Barkley remaining exclusively on TNT. However, the whole saga was weird from start to finish.
Barkley told the New York Post Andrew Marchand Friday that he remains with Turner for the rest of his career. And that LIV didn’t make him an offer.
Let’s take a look at the timeline of how it all played out:
• In mid-June, Barkley spoke about the controversy surrounding LIV on The Pat McAfee Show and said “if someone gave me $200 million, I’d kill a relative.”
• In mid-July Barkley said The next round podcast that he is going to meet LIV about a possible role with the tour.
• Last week, Dan Patrick said Barkley told him he might have to leave TNT to join LIV.
• Earlier this week, Barkley told Patrick that LIV would have to triple his salary from TNT and endorsements (around $20m) to get him, but that LIV had until Thursday to make an offer.
• Today is over, Barkley told Marchand that it was better for him to leave LIV.
The whole saga was weird from start to finish. A basketball guy would leave the greatest sports studio show of all time to go… golf? When this golf organization doesn’t even have a TV contract?
And LIV courted Barkley, but never made him an offer?
Barkley doesn’t seem like the kind of guy who would do a publicity stunt to get more money from his bosses, but that seems to be how it ended up going.
When Patrick guessed that Barkley was making $20 million a year between Turner and endorsements, Barkley confirmed. And when people found out that Barkley was making $10 million from Turner, the consensus was that he was underpaid when you compare his worth to the rest of the sportscasting folks.
There is no more powerful person in sports media than Barkley. Nobody moves the needle like him. It’s not hard to believe that Barkley saw the salaries of others in sports media, especially in the NFL where the money has recently gone haywire, and felt he deserved more.
Barkley has said many times that once his current contract with Turner expires, he’s done doing television. Now he’s releasing a statement saying he’ll be with Turner for the rest of his TV career, implying he’ll be around longer than a year or two.
And that this was all done intentionally to get Turner to pay up and give Barkley a new contract, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with Barkley making this move. It’s business.
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But everything about Barkley and LIV still seems weird.
2. WWE held open tryouts in Nashville on Thursday, and one of the people who showed up was Lakers’ Dwight Howard, who did an impressive promo.
3. Eagles rookie defensive tackle Jordan Davis, who was drafted 13th in Georgia, made his team feel good in training camp after beating Rick James’ “Mary Jane.”
4. NFL players lift weights, drill, and study the playbook during training camp to prepare for the season. NFL broadcasters prepare for the season by making sure their hair is on point.
5. We have a follow-up to the Choco Taco news we covered earlier this week on Traina Thoughts.
6. This week’s episode of Sports Illustrated Media Podcast features two interviews.
The first is John Ourand from Sports Business Journal. Ourand talks about the history of Barkley/LIV Golf, the latest news on the streaming service that will land NFL Sunday Ticket, what will happen to bars and restaurants when Sunday Ticket goes live, and how DirecTV will be affected by the loss of Sunday Ticket.
After Ourand, Dave Meltzer from Wrestling Observer joins the podcast to share his views on Vince McMahon’s retirement from WWE. Why has McMahon retired now? Is there any chance McMahon will be back? What changes can fans expect with Paul Levesque, aka Triple H, in charge of creation? Where is Vince’s son Shane right now? When will fans see the changes to the TV product?
The podcast concludes with the weekly “Traina Thoughts” segment with Sal Licata of WFAN radio and SNY TV in New York. This week, Jimmy and Sal discuss the Radio Hall of Fame, stopping Choco Taco ice cream, how much money they’d pay for a gig, and more.
You can listen to the podcast below or download it from Apple, Spotify and Google.
You can also watch the IS Media Podcast on Youtube.
7. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: Forty years ago today, Andy Kaufman, Jerry “The King” Lawler and David Letterman gave us one of the most memorable moments in late night history.
Make sure you catch up on previous editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify Where Google. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter, instagram and ICT Tac.