Barkley defends Thomas: He, Stockton are 'the 2 best pure' point guards ever

Joe Murphy / National Basketball Association / Getty

Charles Barkley came to the defense of fellow Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas after the latter was painted in a negative light during a recent episode of "The Last Dance."

"I just thought some of the stuff that happened to Isiah after last week was disrespectful because he's the greatest pure point guard ever. Him and John Stockton," Barkley said during a recent appearance on "ESPN's Get Up."

"Magic Johnson is the greatest point guard ever, but he's a freak of nature. But Isiah Thomas and John Stockton are the two best pure - when I say pure, I mean little guys to play the point guard position - they're the best to ever do it."

The episode chronicled the incident in which Thomas and his Detroit Pistons walked off the court without shaking hands with Michael Jordan's Chicago Bulls after being swept in the 1991 Eastern Conference finals.

Thomas recently expressed regret over his team's decision, acknowledging he paid a "heavy price" for the unsportsmanlike gesture. The Pistons legend also hoped that one choice wasn't what prevented him from earning a spot on the revered 1992 U.S. Olympic team.

Barkley, who won gold in Barcelona as a member of that famous squad, said that while Thomas made a mistake by not shaking Jordan's hand, "he probably should have been on the Dream Team."

Barkley defends Thomas: He, Stockton are 'the 2 best pure' point guards ever
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