Charles Barkley was legendary for his skills on the basketball court, but the former NBA great is also, suprisingly, a huge fan of another sport: hockey!
In fact, Barkley visited Nashville on Monday as the special guest of NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman to attend Game 4 of the Stanley Cup finals.
“Sir Charles” wasn’t content to merely take in the sights and sounds at Bridgestone Arena, and decided to have a little fun by crashing a press conference held by Wayne Gretzky.
Standing offstage while Gretzky spoke (with his former Edmonton Oilers teammate Paul Coffey at his right), Barkley grabbed a mic and interruppted.
“Well, you know, I’ve just always wondered: Who’s your favourite black athlete of all time?” asked Barkley.
Coffey and Gretzky turned to see who had asked, and broke into wide grins when they recognized the questioner. The Great One quickly quipped: “Grant Fuhr,” naming the longtime Oilers goaltender.
Barkley wasn’t done, and took a seat at the podium to join in on the press conference.
“There’s nothing more nerve-wracking than Stanley Cup playoff overtime hockey,” Barkley remarked. “It’s the craziest thing.”
Barkley also expressed his admiration for the Pittsburgh Penguins — who have won the Stanley Cup four times — noting how tough it is to win multiple times.
“Teams that win a lot are the greatest teams. Winning is hard. We all want to win. But great teams, multiple championships, I put them on a pedestal,” said Barkley.