Rich Paul has become one of the most infamous figures around the NBA. Well-known for his lifelong friendship with LeBron James, he represents some of the most prominent players in the league, including Anthony Davis and Ben Simmons.
Paul is feared around front offices because of the way he acts. Somehow, someway, he’s going to make sure that his players get traded to a big-market team, regardless of their contractual obligations or even the trade package the said team can offer in return.
That’s why Hall of Famer Charles Barkley spoke on Ben Simmons’ current situation, hoping that the Sixers stand up to Paul and don’t cave in to his demands the same way the Pelicans did with the Anthony Davis trade.
Charles Barkley Criticizes Klutch Sports And Rich Paul
“You know how that group works,” Barkley said. “They try to trade their players to where they want to. [The Lakers] had better deals from Boston and I think maybe New York. But they’re like ‘no, he’s gonna go to LA and gonna play with LeBron or he’s not going to play.’
“They just bullied the league,” Barkley added. “At some point, a team of the league got to stand up and say, ‘wait a minute, I paid your guy. You can’t bully me to trade him and me taking some trash back’. So, I’m hoping somebody in the Sixers organization got some stones.”
Barkley is completely right this time. The players have way too much leverage nowadays and hurt the league’s competitive balance by forcing their ways out of their teams. It’s ok if you want to go, but you don’t get to choose where to play.
It’s not unusual to see superstars teaming up to win a ring, and it’s fair to some exempt. But a contending team shouldn’t get a superstar in return for spare parts. They should pay a fair price for them, regardless of what the player or Rich Paul want.
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