Home NBA Rumors TNT Signs Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, Ernie Johnson, Shaq to Extensions

TNT Signs Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith, Ernie Johnson, Shaq to Extensions

TNT’s Inside the NBA is perceived as the best NBA pre- and postgame show in the business, and its top-notch studio crew is again being rewarded for its efforts.Inside the NBA

As revealed by the network, host Ernie Johnson and the expert panel of Charles Barkley, Kenny Smith and Shaquille O’Neal have each received long-term contract extensions.

Barkley’s deal is for 10 years and between $100 million and $200 million, per Andrew Marchand of the New York Post. Barkley still has three years left on his current contract.

“We’re all a big family. Ernie, Kenny and Shaquille are brothers to me, and I wouldn’t still be here if it wasn’t for them and all the amazing people who work on our show,” Barkley said in a statement. “I’m not gonna lie, though, this is a life-altering deal … and I’m blessed to be able to do live television for a living.”

As Marchand noted, there’s a chance that Barkley could retire before his extension plays out in its entirety.

That said, he isn’t going anywhere for now.

“News of the new contracts should put an end to rumors that the show’s biggest star, Barkley, could be moving to another outlet,” wrote John Ourand of Sports Business Journal. “In recent months, Barkley had considered moving to LIV Golf or retiring from his television role. Barkley will be nearing 70 years of age when this deal wraps.”

Inside the NBA is entering its 34th season and has its own spot in both the Broadcasting & Cable Hall of Fame and Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. It even has its own Emmy-nominated documentary, entitled, The Inside Story.

“We’re incredibly proud of Inside the NBA and all it has achieved throughout its storied history — helping to define and share in the culture of the NBA and its fans — and so much of that success can be attributed to the chemistry between Ernie, Charles, Kenny and Shaquille,” said Lenny Daniels, President, WBD Sports US. “In our industry, it’s so rare to find a show that transcends sports media, but Inside the NBA has earned its reputation as one of the best in television history.”

TNT will continue to carry games on Thursday and Tuesday nights throughout the season, with NBA TV, of course, also being owned by Turner Sports. NBA TV airs games every day throughout the regular season and for portions of the playoffs.

Per Michael McCarthy of Front Office Sports:

“The long-running Inside the NBA has won 17 Emmys and is widely recognized as the best studio show in sports TV. The announcement came just one day before tipoff of the NBA’s 2022-23 season with a TNT doubleheader.”

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