TNT had the broadcast Wednesday evening for one of the NHL’s opening week games between the New York Rangers and the Washington Capitals. That meant a very special guest got to join the studio show in-between periods: NBA analyst Charles Barkley.
“The Round Mound of Rebound”, who’s carved out quite the role for himself as a television analyst, joined the broadcast crew Wednesday to add a little bit of entertainment to the more traditional telecast. Alongside him in the studio was the best hockey player of all-time, Wayne Gretzky.
As Barkley tends to do, he decided to poke fun at his co-hosts. This time, he went after Gretzky.
In a segment during the pregame show, the broadcast showed one of the NHL legend’s old fights on the ice. Gretzky was getting beat pretty badly and Barkley, who’d never seen the clip before, couldn’t believe it.
“Wait you lost to a guy with a perm? Are you serious?” Barkley chided at Gretzky during the broadcast, per Shayna Goldman of The Athletic.
Charles Barkley makes fun of Wayne Gretzky losing a fight to someone with a perm. pic.twitter.com/EraQ5JsZTM
— Shayna (@hayyyshayyy) October 13, 2021
Barkley is normally trading barbs with Shaquille O’Neal, but considering the other NBA big man wasn’t available he decided to change up his target. One thing became clear tonight: no one is free from Chuck’s jokes.
Gretzky got his revenge later in the show. During an intermission, he and Barkley squared off in a makeshift penalty shootout.
Gretzky lined up a few feet back, while Barkley took his spot in front of the net and tried to stop shots. Unsurprisingly, the greatest hockey player to ever lace up skates made four of five and for most of those shots, the basketball Hall of Famer wasn’t particularly close.
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) October 14, 2021
TNT just inked a new deal with the NHL earlier this year to bring games to the network. The new contract has also given hockey fans a chance to see Barkley on television during intermission, which seems to be a great call after just one broadcast.
Time will tell how TNT plans to implement Barkley into hockey telecasts with the NBA season ramping back up.