Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley has declared his plan to retire from broadcast television at the conclusion of the 2024-2025 NBA season, bringing an end to his 25 years as an analyst. This announcement has come at a time of uncertainty in the NBA’s media landscape, with the future of broadcasting rights up in the air.

Barkley, aged 61, made this revelation during an interview on NBA TV following Game 4 of the NBA Finals on Friday night. In his statement, he expressed his deep appreciation for the network and the NBA family, stating, “I just want to say thank you to my NBA family, you guys have been great to me. My heart is full with joy and gratitude, but I’m going to pass the baton at the end of next year.”

Despite the recent noise surrounding TNT, the network where Barkley has become a significant presence, he made it clear that he is not planning to move to any other network. “I’ve talked to all the other networks, but I ain’t going nowhere other than TNT,” he asserted. “But, I have made the decision myself, no matter what happens, next year is going to be my last year on television.”

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In light of the uncertainty about the future of “Inside the NBA” due to ongoing negotiations for broadcasting rights, Barkley’s retirement announcement brings an added layer of intrigue to the situation. The current deals with ABC-ESPN and Turner Sports are set to expire after the upcoming season, and various networks and platforms, including NBC, ESPN, and Amazon, are in discussions with the NBA about what comes next.

Despite the potential changes in broadcasting rights, Barkley stressed that his future plans are not tied to these decisions. His retirement from television will proceed as planned, and he has expressed his intention to pass the baton to potential successors, suggesting that TNT’s Vince Carter or Jamal Crawford might fill his shoes.

This announcement marks the end of an era for NBA viewers who have grown accustomed to Barkley’s presence and commentary on game nights.

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