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Michael Jordan Once Gave His Friend Charles Barkley Stock Advice That Made Him $20 Million

The two were thick as thieves in their peak years, but now they are no more on talking terms.
UPDATED JAN 22, 2024
Cover Image Source: (L) Getty Images | 	Stephen Lovekin | (R)  Getty Images | Jayne Kamin-Oncea
Cover Image Source: (L) Getty Images | Stephen Lovekin | (R) Getty Images | Jayne Kamin-Oncea

Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley were once best friends. The duo born just three days apart entered NBA almost four decades ago. They haven't spoken in years. However, during their peak years, the duo looked out for each other. 

Back in the day, both the players had signed with Nike when it wasn't the footwear giant it is today. At the time Jordan happened to take a look at Barkley's contract and offered advice

"He says, 'I was looking at your contract. You're making about three million dollars. Tell Nike you want a million, and you want the rest in stock options,'" Barkley said. "And I said, 'ok, I'll run it by my guys.'"

Getty Images | Jonathan Daniel
Getty Images | Jonathan Daniel

Barkley's team thought that it was a great idea and believed that Jordan being the greatest player in the world had a point and he agreed to what he suggested.

Barkley estimated that he had made 10 times of what he would have made if he took that $2 million in cash. This means that he earned at least $20 million from the increased value of the stocks. He still shares the same rapport with the company which is a probable result of that one stock tip. It has been reported that over the course of his career, Barkley earned about $43.6 million in salary because of that one tip.


The Feud Between Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley

The two were thick as thieves in their peak years, but they haven't exchanged a single word in the past 10 years. Barkley claims that Jordan didn't take kindly to criticism that came from his former friend during an analysis on TV.

In an interview with CBS, Barkley opened up about what really happened between the two.

He said, "Michael disagreed with something I said, and he broke off the friendship. And what I said, I think that he doesn't have enough people around him that are gonna tell him, 'No.' "And he got really offended, and we haven't spoken."

In another interview, Barkley said that Jordan exploded with rage and screamed at his friend: "He went ballistic," he said. 

"He called me, and that's the last thing I heard was, 'm***********, f*** you! You supposed to be my boy."'

Barkley added in the same interview that "he is going to do his job" and "because I have zero credibility if I criticize other people in the same boat and not criticize my best friend."

Barkley was asked if he would ever pick up the phone and ring his old friend to which he replied,  "I got an ego too. You can't be great at something...that doesn't give you the right to be a jerk. He got my number."

In another interview with ESPN, Barkley said, "I did nothing wrong….” We’re both stubborn. Look, I love the man and wish him nothing but the best. I have no animosity against him. I miss his company."

Time and again Barkley has made it clear that he would love to reconcile with Jordan, he said in an interview with Aldridge, "We were great friends forever," Barkley said. "I miss Michael. I love Michael. I wish him nothing but the best. He’s the greatest basketball player ever. But obviously, he didn’t take kindly to some things I said about his management skills. And that’s unfortunate. That’s unfortunate. But I’ve got to do my job …"