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Sacramento Kings star DeMarcus Cousins has insisted that he has no respect for NBA legend Charles Barkley after years of unfair criticism.
Barkley once told reporters that he was left disappointed after watching Cousins in a high school game before insisting that he didn’t think the young star was ready after he opted to turn pro after one season in Kentucky.
A couple of years ago, Barkley backed the Kings’ decision to suspend Cousins and it appears as though the Sacramento star hasn’t forgotten his comments and has typically ignored Barkley when the two are close by.
“I have no respect for you and I never will. We have nothing to talk about. So, yes, every time we see each other, there will never be words,” Cousins said in an interview as if Barkley was addressing him.
However, the TNT presenter has conceded that he isn’t quite sure why Cousins holds such a grudge against him, as he believes that he made a “conscious effort not to be too hard on him.”
Nevertheless, it appears as though the former NBA star has annoyed a player who used to look up to him as an idol.
“Coming up as a kid and hearing that from one of the best players ever to come out of Alabama,” Cousins said, “a guy people grow up looking up to, to hear him say, ‘Well, he’s not that good…’ I remember it like it was yesterday. Then, coming into my rookie season, you take up for your ex-coach and say I’m the worst thing that ever happened to Sacramento on national TV. Yeah, I’m going to remember.”
Barkley has insisted that he believes Cousins would have benefited from having a tougher coach to hold him accountable, but he has also previously suggested that the 24-year-old could become the best big man in the NBA if he matures and plays the game the right way.