U.S. President Barack Obama one-on-one with Charles Barkley

barkley_obamaU.S. President Barack Obama gave former NBA player Charles Barkley, now a commentator with TNT, an interview about professional basketball, his current participation in the sport and ObamaCare.

First Barkley asked the president about Lebron James, and Obama said that in every aspect of the game, Lebron has a chance to be as good as anybody.

“You know Lebron, I know Lebron. When you’re standing next to him, and you watch him close up, I’ve never seen anybody of that size, that fast, jump that high, who is that strong, and who has that much basketball savvy. He’s all in one package,” Obama said.

However, Obama said he was “a Chicago guy”, and Michael Jordan “will always be the guy” for him, just because “that was a magical moment for the city.”

“Mike was a champion, but he’s retired now. And Lebron, when you look at him, he might be able to play at a high level for another 7-8, or 10 years,” the president said.

Obama went on to say that these days he doesn’t get to play basketball too often – mostly just once a month.

“One reason for that is that you get older. Second is because you have to think about elbows and broken noses before State of the Union address,” Obama said.

The U.S. president further said that the United States is stronger when everybody is treating everyone with respect and dignity.

“Think about basketball… what the NBA was before african americans were allowed to play on an equal footing. You think about stories, even guy like Oscar Robertson tells what they went through,” he said.

In the end, Obama told Barkley not to “give Shaq such a hard time”, while Barkley responded with “I’ve got to”.


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