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via Getty

via Getty

Charles Barkley revealed that Moses Malone was more than just a mentor to the young Chuck in a recent interview. Barkley reminisced, “I called him ‘Dad’ all the time”. He said that Malone was not only a mentor to him in the Philadelphia 76ers but also a father figure in his life.

As part of the NBA’s 75th-anniversary celebrations, the NBA and the Athletic are doing a countdown of the 75 best players of the NBA. Malone was the topic for this time, and his close apprentice, Chuck, was interviewed for the same.

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Charles opened up about the time he got to know that the legend has passed away. Speaking on Malone, Barkley reminisced on one of the most bittersweet moments of his life. In particular, He spoke about giving the eulogy at the legend’s wake.

“And the crazy thing about it, Moses died on a Sunday. I saw him Friday night at the Hall of Fame. I gave Dad a big hug. I’m flying to L.A. (Sunday) to do a commercial. I land in L.A., and unless somebody fucks up in the NBA, a trade or something, not a lot of people have my number. I land in L.A., which is a five-hour trip. I’ve got 50 fucking messages, people checking on me. I’m like, ‘Damn, somebody got traded.’ It was most of the people in my life calling to check on me. It was crazy. I just cried and felt so bad.”

Read more: “You’re Gonna Have Some Good Days, You’re Gonna Have Some Bad Days”: LeBron James’ Motivational Message After Victory vs Nets

Charles Barkley was saved by Moses Malone

Barkley gives all credit for saving his life to Moses Malone, who was like the prophet Moses to a young Chuck. Famously, Malone is known for his unabashed criticism of Barkley’s physical attributes which inspired Chuck to work on conditioning and get in better shape.

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via Imago

A rookie Charles Barkley lived in the same building as veteran teammate Moses Malone. Charles was upset about not getting any playing time despite being the 5th pick in the ’84 draft. So, he asked Malone if he can talk to him about the practice at his residence. What Malone told him then was responsible for his greatness, revealed Chuck. “Hey, you’re fat and you’re lazy”, Chuck said these words motivated him to lose his weight 10 pounds at a time and get to 250 pounds from 300 pounds in no time.

Both Barkley and Malone will immortal as legends in the Philadelphia 76ers. Even though Barkley is one of the few greats who could never win a championship, he still holds an MVP and 11x All-NBA and All-Star appearances each. Malone ended his career with 1 ring and Finals MVP, 3 regular-season MVPs, 8x All-NBA, and 12x All-Star appearances. Nonetheless, both will be remembered by history as part of the greatest rebounders of all time.

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Who would you want in your All-NBA team? Let us know in the comments.

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