The NBA is expected to announce its new media rights deal this year, but Charles Barkley chose to take his future into his own hands.

Friday night likely was Barkley’s last broadcast of the season since Shaquille O’Neal is one of the hosts on the NBA TV broadcast when the NBA Finals are in Boston. After the Dallas Mavericks handed the Celtics a 122-84 loss in Game 4 at American Airlines Center, Barkley announced next season would be his last on television.

“I ain’t going nowhere other than TNT,” Barkley told the NBA TV panel, per Awful Announcing. “But, I have made the decision myself. No matter what happens, next year is going to be my last year on television.”

Barkley stressed that was the last he was going to talk about the subject and wanted to tell his NBA colleagues. The 61-year-old wanted to retire after 25 years on television and was willing to “pass the baton” to whoever steps into his role.

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The NBA this summer is negotiating with multiple networks on a new media deal. There isn’t much optimism the league will renew its deal with Warner Bros. Discovery, which puts a show like “Inside the NBA” in jeopardy.

Barkley is one of the most popular broadcasters on TV, and NBA fans will cherish their memories of the Hall of Famer throughout the 2024-25 season.

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