During TNT’s Thursday night broadcast, NBA Hall of Famer Charles Barkley offered the controversial idea that NBA players and other professional athletes should be given preferential treatment when it comes to receiving the coronavirus vaccine.
Charles Barkley says NBA/NFL players should jump the line and get vaccine shots because they pay more taxes than normal people pic.twitter.com/ce5y1WTTOk
— gifdsports (@gifdsports) January 15, 2021
“We need 300 million shots,” Barkley said. “I’d give 1,000 to some NBA players.”
After fellow commentator Kenny Smith asked about NFL players, Barkley continued his comments.
“NFL, I’m just getting ready to say, NFL players, hockey players,” Barkley said. “Listen, as much taxes as these players pay, let me repeat that, as much taxes as these players pay, they deserve some preferential treatment.”
Smith then strongly dismissed the idea that the amount of money being made by a person should determine his or her status for the badly needed vaccine.
Barkley’s comments come in the wake of the NBA’s struggles to contain the spread of the virus, which has led to the postponement of a number of games.
Despite the recent outbreaks, NBA players and other athletes are not considered to be among the most vulnerable members of the population to contract the potentially deadly virus.
It’s likely that Barkley’s comments will quickly be forgotten, considering that any effort by the NBA to adopt that strategy would presumably result in a horrendous public relations disaster for the league.