Charles Barkley turns 50 years old todayPosted by Inside Hoops
Born on Feb. 20, 1963, Charles Wade Barkley rose from those humble beginnings to become a superstar that few would describe as humble.
Brash and bruising, Barkley established himself as one of greatest power forwards in league history; despite being just 6-foot-4 (he was often listed as 6-6). He was a relentless rebounder – earning the moniker “The Round Mound of Rebound” – and a prolific scorer as he finished his 16-year career with 23,757 points and 12,546 boards.
Drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers with the fifth pick in a legendary draft class which included Olajuwon (first overall), Jordan (third) and John Stockton (16), Barkley learned the NBA ropes from veterans Julius Erving, Moses Malone, Maurice Cheeks and Andrew Toney.
During the 1986-87 season, Barkley became the man in Philly as he made his first of 11 trips to the All-Star Game.
His career-best season, however, would come in 1992-93 as a member of the Phoenix Suns. Barkley won the MVP award as he guided the Suns to the best record in the league (62-20) and a trip to the Finals. In the championship series, Barkley’s best wasn’t enough against Jordan and his two-time defending champion Chicago Bulls.
– Reported by Justin Boyd of the Houston Chronicle