When betting on basketball is as one-sided as the Cleveland Cavaliers made game 2 of their NBA playoffs second round series against the Atlanta Hawks, it’s always refreshing when extracurricular occurrences shake things up a bit. For example, Charles Oakley and Charles Barkley are clearly paying tribute to the late, great Prince – specifically one if his biggest hits – by reviving their 1999 feud. And it was about time, too; according to the 7 Year Rule, they were able to rehash this particular storyline since 2006. It all started with the Cavs’ dissection of the Hawks on Wednesday.
Cleveland set a new NBA record with 25 three-point shots made, including 18 in the first half – which ended 38-74, prompting the Hawks’ twitter account to Crying Jordan themselves. In reaction to the Cavs’ three-point prowess, TNT commentator suggested that the Hawks put a hit on some of their opponents. His exact words were that they “gotta take somebody out. Take’em out.” Whether he meant a drive-by or a regular Tonya Harding is up to interpretation. Either way, former NBA star and Cleveland-born Oakley took umbrage to this, telling Barkley to “stop talking s***” about his hometown. For those betting on basketball and keeping track, the Cavs lead the series 2-0.
This is not the first time that Oakley has been angered by Barkley’s words. Back in 1999, during the NBA lockout, Oakley allegedly punched Barkley at a union meeting because he “heard what he was saying about me in Atlantic City and I didn’t like it.” Just so there is no misunderstanding, this was in fact an NBA union meeting and not a Teamster Union meeting. Oakley then supposedly told Barkley to change his name because “I’m the only Charles.” No word on whether he also asked Sir Charles to change the –kley at the end of his last name.
Before people start online betting on who could beat up who, these two should parlay this rivalry into a successful money-making machine. A movie franchise isn’t that far-fetched; Oakley already looks like the spitting image of Ossie Davies. Their first vehicle could be a remake of The Two Jakes entitled – you guessed it – The Two Charleses. Next in line would be a sequel of Grudge Match. Oakley would obviously play the straight man to Barkley’s antics, and they don’t even need to like each other; I hear Abbott hated Costello’s guts. And if Oakley is reluctant to the partnership, just tell him that, with all the dough he’s going to make, he can fly around the world – and travel through in time – telling Prince Charles, Charles Dickens, Charles Durning, Charles Grodin, Charles Chaplin, and the many St. Charleses to change their names because “I’m the only Charles.”