After going down 2-0 in a best of seven series, the Atlanta Hawks hopes of reaching the Eastern Conference Finals seem to be slipping away. The Cleveland Cavaliers are giving them everything they can handle. The Cavs won the first game 104-93, and the second 123-98. The Hawks have been playing decent basketball, but the Cavs have caught fire from behind the three point line. They have made 20 or more three pointers in both of these games. A lot of people are wondering if anything can go wrong for the Cavs right now. NBA analyst Charles Barkley seems to think that they will not cool off or start playing bad anytime soon, which led him to say what he said. He quoted after the second consecutive win by the Cavs, “They’re going to have to take somebody out”. It caught the public’s attention immediately and there has been a lot of talk about it on ESPN for the last few days. A lot of people are saying he shouldn’t have said it, mainly because it sounds like he is implying that the Hawks should seriously injure a player on the Cavs team.
The statement was heard by Cleveland’s head coach, Tyronn Lou. He let his opinion on the situation be known by saying that Barkley’s remark was uncalled for and not smart of him to say. While there are people who agree with Lou, there are others who believe Barkley was just being sarcastic and really saying the Hawks just don’t have a chance. Former NBA player Charles Oakley is one that felt this way. Before expressing his opinion on the actual statement during an interview, he made sure listeners knew that he and Barkley are not the best of friends, so there was no favoritism while he answered questions. He stated that the Hawks were a pretty good team without a superstar, and Barkley knows that. Oakley said that because the analysts clown and make sarcastic statements during halftime and ESPN talk shows, sometimes when viewers here what is said it can be taken the wrong way. Oakley admits that everybody knows what the statement means, but that’s not what Barkley really wants the Hawks to do, it was just a figure of speech.
Maybe Barkley should have just simply said that the Hawks are in over their head, or just don’t have a chance. That would have left no room for misinterpretation. However, Barkley has come out and said he meant absolutely nothing negative by the statement, and even apologized for it. The series continues tonight as the Hawks host the Cavs for game 3 in Atlanta.