Barnes blames 'Basketball Wives' for off-court drama, says he'd still slap Cheeks

Barnes blames 'Basketball Wives' for off-court drama, says he'd still slap Cheeks

The Score - NBA Basketball

Matt Barnes has always been the kind of player that teammates love and opponents hate. He's also had his share of off-court issues over the course of his 13-year NBA career, and the new Sacramento Kings forward admits that he hasn't always helped his own cause.

Barnes told his former Los Angeles Clippers teammate J.J. Redick on The Vertical podcast that one of his errors was joining the cast of a reality TV show with now-estranged wife Gloria Govan.

"I think the biggest mistake I ever made was doing that stupid 'Basketball Wives' show," Barnes told Redick. "Then to go through a public divorce with a basketball wife, and then what happened last summer, with my ex hooking up with my teammate."

Barnes, of course, is referring to last October's incident where he had a physical confrontation with then-New York Knicks coach Derek Fisher, who, previously unbeknownst to Barnes, had started dating Govan.

Barnes has been far from private about the situation since, publicly ripping his former Los Angeles Lakers teammate, and then publishing an Instagram post of himself with a smug grin on his face after the Knicks fired Fisher.

The 36-year-old small forward said his personality may be abrasive sometimes, but that's who he is.

"I'm always going to be me," Barnes said. "Whether I'm in the NBA, a police officer, a doctor, a drug dealer, whatever ... I'm gonna be me. So when stuff happens I'm going to be speak on it, and if it really pushes my buttons I'm gonna react on it.

"I may fly off the hook in certain situations like I did last summer, which I think was justified, and I think, you know, 90 percent of the men in the world feel me."

Barnes also revisited his rocky history with Maurice Cheeks, who coached him on the Philadelphia 76ers in 2005-06. Barnes told Sports Illustrated in 2015 that the two nearly came to blows at a practice and that Chris Webber had to separate them.

"He was just a dick," Barnes told Redick of Cheeks, who is now an assistant coach with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

"I really didn't like him. I still to this day, like, I'll slap him in his face if he ever said anything to me."

Barnes signed with the Kings in July after spending last season with the Memphis Grizzlies. It will be the Sacramento native's second stint as an NBA player in his hometown. While his offensive game is probably more limited now than it has ever been, Barnes is still a scrappy defender who tied his career high in steals per game last year.

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