Charles Barkley has been riding the Trail Blazers train for quite some time, but man, he is really confident in this Portland team.
On Tuesday night, the TNT analyst didn't back down from his stance that the Trail Blazers would upset the Lakers in the first round of the 2020 NBA playoffs. In fact, he doubled down, calling Game 1 a "must-win" for Los Angeles.
"If the Portland Trail Blazers win tonight, they're going to sweep the Lakers," Barkley said.
Chuck: “If the Portland Trail Blazers win tonight they’re going to sweep the Lakers.” pic.twitter.com/KmQJBmLf2P— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) August 19, 2020
NBA PLAYOFF PREDICTIONS:
Series-by-series breakdowns & NBA Finals picks
An incredulous Kenny Smith couldn't help but laugh at Barkley's prediction. Ernie Johnson then asked Smith, "I know you're socially distant, but can you see what's in his cup?"
Barkley assured the rest of the crew he was only drinking Diet Coke, but you can't blame Johnson for wondering about the contents of Barkley's cup, considering the Hall of Famer had also struggled to say Kyle Kuzma's name correctly earlier in the segment.
In defense of Barkley, if ever there was a time to pick a No. 8 seed to upset the best team in the conference, it would be now. The Trail Blazers have won their last four games, including the play-in contest against the Grizzlies, and Damian Lillard is the kind of star capable of dominating a series. Plus, the Magic defeated the top-seeded Bucks earlier in the day, and no one saw that coming.
Still, a championship contender being swept out of the first round seems highly unlikely. LeBron James entered this postseason with a perfect 13-0 career record in first-round series, so it seems unwise to bet against him, especially with Anthony Davis by his side.
Maybe double-check what Chuck is drinking just to be safe.