Charles Barkley knows a little thing about criticism. He's been receiving a plethora of throughout his career and for his NCAA Tournament analysis. Thursday night, Barkley defended college hoops analyst Doug Gottlieb from critics calling for his job and slapping him with the racist label after he made an awkward joke about his four black co-hosts at the tip-off of CBS' Pregame Show.
"Cream rising to the crop. I don't know why you guys asked me, I'm just here to bring diversity to the set here. Give the kind of white man's perspective on things from the point guard position." Gottlieb said with a smrk on his face. Instead of laughs, Gottlieb got crickets, a hilarious "no he didn't just say that" look from Greg Anthony and angry tweets in his mentions.
The most vocal was ESPN's resident college football rabblerouser Mark May, who went at Gottlieb's head.
After Doug Gottlieb's ignorant comment on CBS he should be canned— Mark May (@mark_may) March 29, 2013
That type of comment is ment for a bar not a national stage.Nice job Gottlieb I hope all the kids 12 and under didn't hear it !— Mark May (@mark_may) March 29, 2013
Later in the broadcast, Barkley put on his Cochran shoes and came to Gottlieb's aid.
"I know this has nothing to do with the game, I want to say something about Doug Gottlieb," Barkley said on air. "He made a joke earlier tonight and people are going crazy. All those idiots on Twitter, which I would never ever do, all you people at home who've got no life and are talking bad about Doug Gottlieb, get a life. It's over with. It's no big deal."
Greg Gumbel, Greg Anthony and Kenny Smith each commended Barkley for keeping it real on live television, Gottlieb released a sigh of relief and the world kept spinning. On a sidenote, it was also an outlet for Barkley to express his well-known disdain for Twitter and the reactionary culture it has created. Overall, Barkley's criticism of Gottlieb's critics was succinct and on point. The racist glove doesn't fit him. Even Marshall Henderson hates him.
It was a lame joke that didn't stick. Next time he'll run his jokes by the staff in a pre-show meeting. Ultimately, four black men kept a high profile white man from losing his job. Martin Luther King Jr's dream has been realized.
Chances are college basketball fans needed a diversion from last night's slate of uninteresting games.
CBS should be thankful for Doug Gottlieb. 3 crappy games last night, he's the 2nd biggest story is.gd/X58O7X— Jason McIntyre (@TheBigLead) March 29, 2013