1. Charles Barkley likes to talk. Kyrie Irving does not. The result of that is Barkley going off on Irving for his behavior in typical Barkley fashion.
Thursday, on ESPN's Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin morning show, the TNT studio host lit into the Nets guard for recently threatening to boycott the media this season.
“They don’t pay you $40 million just to play basketball. Part of it is sitting down with you guys, sitting down with me and Kenny [Smith] and Ernie [Johnson] and [Shaquille O’Neal], talking to New York reporters," Barkley said on the show. "Being with the media is part of your professional obligation, and you can say what you want to say. But these guys today, they’re different. I don’t hate on them, but I’m not sure what point Kyrie is trying to make."
Even more than the media boycott, Barkley seems fed up with Irving's attitude when it comes to his intelligence.
“When he talks, I'm like, what is he saying and what is he trying to say? He starts talking about what an artist is. He’s a basketball player. That’s what he is. Listen, we’re not front line responders. We’re not teachers. Yo man, you dribble a basketball, stop acting like you’re the smartest person in the world.
“Now can you talk about social issues and things like that? Of course. But some of this other stuff, I’m like ‘Yo, man, you do realize you’re just a basketball player, right?’ And it seems like he’s like, ‘No, I want you guys to know I’m the smartest guy in the room.’ Well, first of all, you’re not. You only went to college for six months. A lot of guys are smarter than you are. Just answer stupid basketball questions. And if you want to say something about social justice, say it and mean it, because it’s important and significant. But all that other stuff? Like, yo, man, shut the hell up and talk basketball.”
Who knew Charles Barkley felt so strongly about flat-Earth truthers?
Honestly, though, "You only went to college for six months" and "Just answer stupid basketball questions" are just tremendous lines.
My guess is we won't see Irving get interviewed on Inside the NBA this season.
2. A quick follow-up on Thursday's Traina Thoughts, which covered Tom Rinaldi's surprising move to leave ESPN for Fox Sports. After talking to a few people in the business, it seems there wasn't anything behind the scenes that caused Rinaldi to leave ESPN. From everything I've heard, this was strictly a money move with Fox making the popular storyteller an offer he just couldn't refuse—and one ESPN just couldn't match.
Jim Miller also threw this info out there Thursday on his Twitter feed.
3. This week started with the story of Raiders running back Josh Jacobs messing with his fantasy football owners by telling them via Instagram that he wasn't playing last Sunday against the Colts as a joke.
Jacobs's stunt upset ESPN fantasy guru Matthew Berry.
However, Jacobs doubled down and showed no regrets.
We are firmly Team Jacobs here. If fantasy nuts want to harass players about their performance, the players have a right to mess with them.
4. Two days ago, Ian Rapoport broke this wild piece of news:
Like many people, I responded in stunned disbelief that one could actually break their throat. This then led to several of my followers reminding me that Randy "Macho Man" Savage once broke Ricky "The Dragon" Steamboat's throat.
This sent me into a YouTube rabbit hole Thursday night, when I came across this amazing piece of footage from the old WWF television days.
So damn good.
5. Legendary sports talk radio host Chris "Mad Dog" Russo joined this week's SI Media Podcast for a conversation.
We discussed NFL broadcasters needing to mention betting/covers, doing a radio show from home, keeping up with the radio business, his decision to reveal who he voted for on his show, the importance of Howard Stern to SiriusXM, the positive reaction to his son's recent appearance on his show, what he thinks of Sour Shoes, why he doesn't like Tony Romo and much more.
You can also watch the podcast on YouTube.
6. RANDOM VIDEO OF THE DAY: I give Eddie Murphy's Delirious a very slight edge over Raw as the greatest standup show ever. But today is a big day for Raw.
It's simply amazing to rewatch Eddie's brilliant bit on Bill Cosby chastising him for using the f-word in his act. Bill Cosby, now in jail for being a convicted rapist, upset that a comedian used the f-word in a stand up show. Can't make it up.
7. SPORTS VIDEO OF THE DAY: Happy 56th birthday to the legendary "Stone Cold" Steve Austin.
Be sure to catch up on past editions of Traina Thoughts and check out the Sports Illustrated Media Podcast hosted by Jimmy Traina on Apple, Spotify or Stitcher. You can also follow Jimmy on Twitter and Instagram.