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It was a wild night in Vegas for Ernie Johnson, Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith and Shaq.

By Jimmy Traina
January 12, 2018

1. Most people are in agreement that TNT's Inside the NBA, with Ernie Johnson, Kenny Smith, Charles Barkley and Shaquille O'Neal, is one of the best studio shows in sports TV history. Yes, Charles can sometimes say ridiculous things and the media's desire to use him as a spokesperson for any and all topics is a bit ridiculous, but I digress. The chemistry shared by the foursome is undeniable and the level of entertainment they provide is impressive. 

They were especially on their game Thursday night, broadcasting live from Vegas. Here's a summary:

- Barkley showed us that he has no idea how to use Siri on his new iPhone.

- Charles couldn't pronounce "accompaniment." 

- Shaq did a great freestyle on Sweet Home Alabama while mocking Ernie over his Bulldogs blowing the title game to the Crimson Tide.

- Barkley belted out My Way.

2. Here are potential NFL title games odds via 5Dimes.com:

Saints -175 vs. Falcons +155
Vikings -230 vs. Falcons +190
Saints -185 vs. Eagles +160
Vikings -150 vs. Eagles +130

Jaguars -350 vs. Titans +290
Steelers -550 vs. Titans +425
Patriots -425 vs. Jaguars +340
Patriots -235 vs. Steelers

3I told you the other day in Traina Thoughts that Bovada.lv has a prop bet on how many times "Carson Wentz" would be mentioned during the Falcons-Eagles playoff game on Saturday. The over/under was 2.5 with the over being -150. The juice on the bet is now -400.

4. Stat of the Day: This is LeBron James' 15th year in the NBA. Last night was the first time in his career that he lost back-to-back games by 25-plus points.

5. It looks like 50 Cent is going to get a chance to redeem himself after throwing one of the worst first pitches in history back in 2014.

6. This week's Off The Board podcast features an interview with author James Andrew Miller, who makes the claim that John Skipper did not leave his role as President of ESPN because of a substance addiction, but because he was pushed out by Disney higher ups. Miller also talks about ESPN's big problem with Monday Night Football and reveals the darkest time in ESPN's history. He also talks about the supbar season of Curb Your Enthusiasm, the Sopranos and more. You can listen to the podcast below or download it on iTunes, SoundCloud and Stitcher.

7Today is Howard Stern's 64th birthday. We celebrate the occasion by giving you not just the greatest prank phone call of all time, but Al Michaels reliving and giving details about the greatest prank phone call of all time.


Traina Thoughts is the best of the Internet, plus musings by SI.com writer, Jimmy Traina. Get the link to a new Traina's Thoughts each day by following on Twitter and liking on Facebook. Catch up on previous editions of Traina Thoughts right here. And check out Jimmy Traina's weekly podcast, "Off The Board."

BONUS ITEM: I went 3-1 with my NFL playoff picks last week. This week, I like the Falcons -3, the Patriots -13.5, the Jaguars +7 and the Saints +5. My podcast colleague, Daniel Rapaport, who does NFL picks with me each week, likes the Eagles +3, the Patriots -13.5, the Jaguars +7 and the Vikings -5.

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