Barkley Holds Court Again

Former NBA star Charles Barkley will deliver the keynote address here at the Spring 2006 Channel Partners Conference & Expo, with an uplifting message of meeting ones personal goals through education and hard work, delivered with his trademark blend of irreverence, candor and humor.

Barkleys favorite themes include lifelong learning as a foundation for a career, social responsibility and the notion that getting good grades, not playing good basketball, should be the goal for youth. Sponsored by Voilà IP Communications, Barkleys commentary will draw from his own colorful career, which began in the NBA, where he was named a league MVP and one of the 50 greatest players of all time. He also is a two-time Olympic gold medalist.

One of four players in NBA history to have racked up at least 20,000 points, 10,000 rebounds and 4,000 assists, the 6-foot-4-inch power forward was known to dominate other players on the court despite his smaller size. He was given the nickname Round Mound of Rebound during his first season, with the Philadelphia 76ers, but was soon anointed Sir Charles as he proved himself king of the monster jam.

Barkley is like Magic [Johnson] and Larry [Bird] in that they dont really play a position, All-Star hero Bill Walton said in a SLAM magazine issue ranking NBA greats. He plays everything; he plays basketball. There is nobody who does what Barkley does. Hes a dominant rebounder, a dominant defensive player, a three-point shooter, a dribbler, a playmaker.

Barkley spent eight seasons in Philadelphia, before earning his greatest glory with the Phoenix Suns. In 1993, Barkley won the NBAs MVP award for leading Phoenix to the leagues best record of 62-20 and a berth in the Finals. The Suns lost to Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls in a classic six-game series.

After a stint for the Houston Rockets, Barkley retired in 1999 due to injuries. After 16 seasons in the NBA, the outspoken Barkley embarked on a second career as a sportscaster and journalist. He is in his fifth season as a commentator on Turners NBA on TNT post-game show. He also is a frequent guest on CNN, The Tonight Show, Late Night with David Letterman and Real Time with Bill Maher.

Sir Charles not only has moved effortlessly from the basketball court to the TV screen, he also has put pen to page. The authors most recent titles are the New York Times best seller, I May Be Wrong, But I Doubt It, and his latest effort, Whos Afraid of a Large Black Man? now out in paperback.

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