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No Barkley on Suns’ 2K18 All-Time team? Sir Charles explains why

Charles Barkley, left, of the Phoenix suns backs in on Shawn Kemp (40) of the Seattle SuperSonics during their NBA Western Conference playoff game in Seattle, June 4, 1993. Seattle beat Phoenix 118-102 to even the best-of-seven series at 3-3. (AP Photo/Gary Stewart)
LISTEN: Charles Barkley, all-time Suns great

Sports video game fans are pretty stoked about the upcoming release of “NBA 2K18” next month.

This year’s version of the game will feature enhanced graphics and a new mode in which users can play with any NBA franchise’s all-time team.

Rosters were released earlier this week and left many Phoenix Suns fans dissatisfied. The game’s makers omitted Suns’ leading scorer Walter Davis, all-time leader in games played Alvan Adams and the “original Sun” Dick Van Arsdale from the Phoenix roster.

Arguably, the franchise’s biggest star, Charles Barkley, also doesn’t appear on the roster. That’s not a surprise — Barkley hasn’t allowed his likeness to be used in video games for years.

As a guest of Bickley and Marotta Friday on 98.7 FM, Arizona’s Sports Station, the former MVP explained why.

“What I’ve told them is, I don’t think we, as players, have ever done enough for the old veteran guys,” Barkley said. “I said if you’re going to use my likeness, you’re going to have to donate some money to the retired players’ association.”

Barkley elaborated, possibly clearing up a misconception about his likeness not being used.

“I don’t want a dime. I’ve been blessed to make a lot of money,” he said. “But the guys before us didn’t make a lot of money. We’ve got a lot of guys who are struggling financially and struggling physically and what I’ve said is ‘you guys can’t use my likeness unless you give some money to the retired players.'”

Barkley mentioned numerous meetings with the companies that produce NBA video games in which he made his requests known. The companies haven’t been receptive.

“They won’t do it,” Barkley said.

The Hall-of-Famer isn’t asking for the world either, in his view.

“What I think would be fair is, if they gave a million dollars — and I’d even let them keep the tax write-off — if they gave a million dollars a year to the retired players association that went to a good cause — health plans or something like that or just gave them money to help them get on their feet, I’d let them use my likeness in a heartbeat,” he said.

“NBA2K18”, without Sir Charles’ likeness, hits stores Sept. 19.

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