(Nike, "I am not a role model" TV Commercial)
Despite being a controversial figure, "Sir Charles" was one of Nike's most successful spokespersons, or more likely, it's because of that controversy that helped propel the off the court success of Charles and the Nike. If Michael Jordan was the seemingly clean cut corporate American spokesperson, then Barkley was his polar opposite. He played the villain role for the NBA and Nike, and played it well.
Charles was one of my favorite players during his career, and is today one of my favorite TV personalities today as an NBA analyst for TNT. He had plenty of game and was certainly a factor in the NBA's resurgence during the late 80's and early 90's golden years. "The Mound Round of Rebound" averaged huge numbers over his sixteen year career filling it up with 22.1 points/game, 11.7 rebounds/game and 3.9 assists/game. To go along with Charles' eleven NBA All-Star appearances, he was also the '93 NBA MVP. Barkley had a distinguished NBA career that also featured a trip to the '93 NBA Finals, two Olympic Gold Medals ('92 & '96), and a spot on the NBA's 50 at 50 Greatest Players list.