Sunday, December 8, 2013
The Associated Press
NEW YORK - Charles Barkley thinks LeBron James of the Miami Heat can be better than Michael Jordan.
John Lucas III, left, and Linas Kleiza keep their feet on ice while using mobile devices Thursday during training camp for the Toronto Raptors in Halifax, Nova Scotia.
The Associated Press
Jordan is considered by many the best player in NBA history, but Barkley believes his teammate with the 1992 Dream Team can be surpassed by James.
"I do think he can be better than Michael," Barkley said. "I thought I would never compare somebody to Michael Jordan. But this guy, LeBron James, he does everything well. Michael did everything well. LeBron James is just bigger, stronger, faster. That's the only difference."
Barkley makes his comments on the first episode of NBA TV's "Open Court," to debut at 11 p.m. Tuesday.
The series features a round-table discussion of NBA TV and TNT commentators. They include Shaquille O'Neal, Reggie Miller, Kenny Smith, Steve Smith, Chris Webber, Steve Kerr and Ernie Johnson.
James won his first NBA title and third MVP award last season, joining Jordan as the only players to win the NBA title, regular-season MVP, NBA finals MVP and Olympic gold medal in the same year.
Jordan won six championships during his Hall of Fame career with the Chicago Bulls.
"Unfortunately for LeBron, now that the monkey is off his back, he is going to be compared to two people: Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan," O'Neal said. "So now the question is how many championships can he get? We all know he is a competitor."
ROCKETS: Houston first-round draft pick Royce White is a no-show at training camp, and said he and the team are working on a plan to address his fear of flying.
The 6-foot-8 White was the 16th overall pick after one season at Iowa State. White suffers from anxiety and fear of flying.
He said on Twitter that he's working with the team on an "innovative plan" to balance treatment with the NBA schedule.
The Rockets opened camp this week in McAllen, near the Texas-Mexico border, the home of their developmental league affiliate.
GRIZZLIES: NFL quarterback Peyton Manning is supporting his wife Ashley's move to join the group of minority owners to buy the team.
The group is being assembled by a prospective owner, Robert J. Pera, and a person familiar with the deal said a former NBA player, Penny Hardaway, also will be part of the group.
Manning and Hardaway join a minority group that includes singer and actor Justin Timberlake and a couple of Memphis businessmen, a source told The Associated Press.
Pera, owner of a California tech company, agreed to buy the Grizzlies from Michael Heisley in June.
The NBA is expected to approve the sale this month.
THE NBA said the Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks will play Jan. 17 at the O2 Arena, the site of this year's Olympic gold-medal game in London.
The Toronto Raptors and New Jersey Nets played a pair of regular-season games at the same venue in March 2011, but the NBA skipped London on its preseason tour this year.
Commissioner David Stern said "playing our third regular-season game in the city in three years, and having historic franchises like the Knicks and Pistons serve as our ambassadors provide extraordinary opportunities to further the game's growth and development in the UK and throughout Europe."