- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
"You're saying you think you could outrun me?" Barkley says.
"Let me see how much money I have in the car," says Kim. "I have no doubt I can outrun you."
"Son, you must not own any videotape," says Barkley. "I could really run in my day."
At that moment a discordant set of sirens sounds off, filling the air unceasingly for five minutes. "They heard you wanted to race me, Charles," says Kim, "so they already called for an ambulance."
The seven-hole workout comes to an abrupt close. There is lunch to consume, and, for Barkley, a late-afternoon flight to Atlanta for his TNT commitment the next evening. "I'm so happy to have a job that requires me to work only one day a week," says Barkley. Two or perhaps three Project episodes are still to be filmed, and the principals depart with a feeling of cautious optimism, emphasis on cautious. Barkley's golf has been better during these two days of filming, and Hartman clings to the notion that his old bud will once again play 18 holes with him, then reconstruct the round—at full volume—at the 19th. Haney, for his part, saw real improvement but not enough that he won't continue to see Barkley's swing in his sleep and dream up new ways of telling his pupil how to fix it. "The guy wants it so bad, and he's so good for golf," says Haney, "that I just can't accept letting him down."
As for Barkley, well, it's difficult to get a grip on how much pressure he feels. He has a great time during shoots, but he has a great time doing almost anything. And for all his antics, there is a whiff of fear and desperation that runs through this whole enterprise. No one is better than Barkley at accepting the slings and arrows of friends and strangers, but that doesn't mean they haven't gotten tiresome. He needs to shut them up. There is a chance that he will be able to do that ... but an equally good one that he won't.
This much is clear, however: Though Barkley sees a golf swing in need of serious alteration, he wouldn't say the same thing about the man making it. Perhaps you would, but he does not.