Dallas Mavericks

Charles Barkley sounds off on Zion, Luka Doncic and Porzingis altercation

Charles Barkley on Dirk Nowitzki: ‘I don’t think we’ve ever had a more humble superstar’

Hall of Famer Charles Barkley called Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki the most humble superstar the NBA has ever seen.
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Hall of Famer Charles Barkley called Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki the most humble superstar the NBA has ever seen.

Charles Barkley sees good things happening for the Dallas Mavericks with Luka Doncic at the center of their resurgence.

Barkley, who was a guest on KESN/103.3 FM ESPN Radio on Wednesday, said the team needs one more big piece to go along with Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis. The Mavs are hoping to attract that sort of player during free agency beginning July 1.

“To get those two young pieces, I think the Mavs have done a really good job,” Barkley said. “I can’t think of a better one-two punch going forward for the next 10 years. You can’t name any [other] two young players [in the league]. It’s easily those two.”

Porzingis was an All-Star with the New York Knicks before an injury in February 2018 sidelined him for the entire 2018-19 season. The Mavs acquired him in a trade on Feb. 1.

“I like the Mavs’ chances with them. I think they are going to need one more piece,” he said. “One more really good piece and some role players. The last time we saw Porzingis, we all thought he was going to be a star. We all know that Doncic is probably going to be the NBA Rookie of the Year. He deserves it. And so, I really like what Mark [Cuban] and the guys have done. I really do.”

Barkley, who has had some run-ins with obnoxious fans over the years, said Porzingis’ recent involvement in an apparent altercation outside a nightclub in Latvia is a “bad look.”

“Times have changed. There’s a lot of anger and jealousy for these players nowadays,” Barkley said. “You’ve got to always walk away. There’s nothing good that can happen for Porzingis fighting. I love the kid. I hope he gets healthy and he’ll be a hell of a player. But I think we are in a generation where guys make so much money, they are really famous, now you got social media. You’ve got to always walk away.”

Barkley, who was a smaller power forward as a player, questioned whether consensus top NBA pick Zion Williamson will find instant success.

“As an undersized power forward It would have been more difficult for me today trying to guard 3s and 4s out on the floor,” he said. “He seems like a great kid but this notion that he’s going to come in and dominate the NBA is crazy.”

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.