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King Charles

Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl Incites Conspiracy Nuts; Big Tech Executives Defend Social Media Impact On Teens; Trump, Biden And Congress Divided Over Bipartisan Border Deal; Hosts Gayle King And Charles Barkley Discuss Sports In The Earlier Days With Multi-Awarded Sports Broadcaster Bob Costas; Mega Pop Star Taylor Swift Generates More Fans For NFL. Aired 10-11p ET

Aired January 31, 2024 - 22:00   ET



DR. ANDREA BONIOR, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: I think COVID exacerbated some of the stresses and isolation that people already were feeling.

KAITLAN COLLINS, CNN ANCHOR: Yes, I mean, clearly, and Elmo was the one to bear the brunt of that.

Doctor, it's a really serious issue that underlying this, and thank you for coming on to talk about it.

BONIOR: Thanks for having me. I really appreciate it.

COLLINS: And thank you all so much for joining us on this busy news night. I'm Kaitlan Collins. King Charles starts right now. You don't want to miss it.

GAYLE KING, CNN HOST: Yes. We welcome you. We welcome you to King Charles. I'm going to try to get through this hour, though, because just a few moments ago, I walked into the glass here at CNN. So my lip is starting to swell a little bit. You see how my lip --

CHARLES BARKLEY, CNN HOST: First of all, you look bright -- I mean, green. You look great, Gayle.

KING: My lip is starting to swell a little bit and it hurts to laugh so I'm just hoping that the lip will at least stay kind of intact.

BARKLEY: The perfect person to hang out with if you don't want to laugh.

KING: No, no, no, no, and I hit my head too.

BARKLEY: Well, you don't have to worry about it. You can't hurt that.

KING: You can't? Have you ever had a concussion because I thought -- I said to Shelby is this a concussion?

BARKLEY: You're doing the show with a concussion?

KING: Well, I'm asking. How do you know if you have -- because I hit it really -- I'm serious, I hit it very, very hard.

BARKLEY: Come on, listen, don't -- you're fine, Gayle.

KING: Okay, all right. Okay. We will proceed. We will proceed.

BARKLEY: I don't even know, like you're always crazy on the show. How am I going to know if the difference between you is crazy or you had a concussion?

KING: I don't know, but my lip is swelling up, but we're going to go.

BARKLEY: Let's go.

KING: Okay. Last Sunday we all know now who is going to the Super Bowl. We all know who's going to the Super Bowl. Charles?

BARKLEY: The Kansas City Chiefs against the San Francisco 49ers.

KING: So, we should be talking about the Chiefs and the 49ers, I think, the matchups, the snacks we're going to be eating during the game, the commercials, I love the commercials. But instead, a lot of people are talking about something else.

What's wrong, people? Roll the tape, please.


JESSSE WATTERS, FOX NEWS HOST: And have you ever wondered why or how she blew up like this? Well, around four years ago, the Pentagon's psychological operations unit floated turning Taylor Swift into an asset during a NATO meeting. So, is Swift a front for a covert political agenda? Primetime obviously has no evidence. If we did, we'd share it.

ALISON STEINBERG, OAN HOST: It's a coordinated marketing campaign by Democrats to leverage celebrities to excite their base into coming out and voting.

JEANINE PIRRO, FOX NEWS HOST: Why alienate your fans, the Swifties? You know, they come across from every political ideology. Why put yourself in one area? Don't get involved. Don't get involved in politics. We don't want to see you there.

KAROLINE LEAVITT, TRUMP 2024 NATIONAL PRESS SECRETARY: Let's not forget that Taylor Swift has made a career off of writing songs about picking the wrong man, so I don't think we should take advice from her now.


KING: Boy, oh boy, conspiracies, deep state, psy ops. You are the biggest professional athlete in the room today, Charles Barkley. So you know cable news is talking about this. Do you think -- I mean, I'm almost even embarrassed to ask this question. When you hear that kind of conversation, what do you think? I don't even want to ask the question. What do you think? BARKLEY: Are they serious?

KING: Yes. Unfortunately, they are serious.

BARKLEY: You know, you can't even make this stuff up. It's so stupid nowadays. There's -- first of all, anybody who listens -- I'm not going to get political but anybody who listens to that stupid stupidity should be embarrassed There's no conspiracy who going to win games.

KING: The Super Bowl, yes.

BARKLEY: And, listen, I love Travis Kelce. I'm a big fan his. And I love Taylor Swift. But the notion that they got this vast conspiracy and whoever she -- they want her to, you know, endorse somebody for president. That's just stupid Yes, I'm not going to vote for any candidate just because some celebrity said it, but the notion that they've got this four years ago, he said four years ago, the Pentagon came up with this conspiracy, this is -- it is -- you get so --


KING: It is maddening to me.

BARKLEY: It's maddening. That's a great word.

KING: Yes, it is maddening. And I also think this, in order for them to pull something like that off, so many people would have to be involved in it. That's why it just makes no sense. That's why I'm not knocking another news program, but I think you have to do your own due diligence when you listen to all these different things.

BARKLEY: You know, for me, though --

KING: You really do.

BARKLEY: I will though. But let me tell you something I am never going to listen to another Taylor Swift song again because she --

KING: Why?

BARKLEY: Well, because she made that dude from the Bills missed that field goal and I bet on the Bills. So, it's her damn fault. So, if I'm driving --

KING: You are saying that tongue and cheek, we should say.

BARKLEY: Of course -- about the bet? No, I bet on the Bills.

No, but the notion that Taylor Swift made my man miss the field goal, it's just so stupid and asinine.

KING: I'm very much in favor of Travis and Taylor, whatever they're doing on that.

BARKLEY: Do your all thing. But, man, I'm mad at her for making that guy miss that field goal.

KING: But maybe you shouldn't have bet.

Here's something I know you're interested in, social media, the takeover of Capitol Hill. So, today, this happened today, the CEOs of Meta, TikTok, Snapchat, X, formerly known as Twitter, we all know that, they all appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee this afternoon. Their mission, to defend social media's impact on your children. So how did it go? Here's part of the testimony today.


MARK ZUCKERBERG, CEO, META: Mental health is a complex issue, and the existing body of scientific work has not shown a causal link between using social media and young people having worse mental health outcomes.


KING: So, that happened. We should say later, Mark Zuckerberg apologized to the families. He apologized only after he was really sort of forced into it by one of the senators, Josh Hawley, who was doing the questioning, saying, do you have anything to say to these families? What do you think about them being called to Capitol Hill to testify?

BARKLEY: I have no problem with it if it brings attention, but we're all -- first of all, you know, you read all the time. I don't do social media myself. You know that.

KING: I do.

BARKLEY: I think it's --

KING: So, you're not on Twitter, you're not on Instagram?

BARKLEY: I'm not on anything.

KING: Why?

BARKLEY: Well, because I don't want to bring fools (ph) into my life, you know, the negativity. Are there positives to it? I hear there're positives to it.

KING: I think there's positive to it.

BARKLEY: But I don't want to bring anything negative into my life.

First of all, Mark Zuckerberg, somebody I would love to meet one day, but you see all the time was these kids are committing suicide, because some of them they've shown on one of these platforms. I think that, number one, the parents deserve some responsibility.

KING: Yes, they do.

BARKLEY: They do. Congress deserves some responsibility. And the company deserves some responsibility.

You know, as we're doing the show, I live in Philadelphia during the summer. And I saw some idiot chop his dad's head off.

KING: Yes, that's the story today, and it was on social media for a long time.

BARKLEY: For hours.

KING: Yes. I didn't look at it.

BARKLEY: Me either. I don't want to see that. But I'm bothered, there should be things in place, if you're racist, sexist, homophobic, any of that stuff, any type of violence, it should be cut off immediately. You know, we were talking to our -- the group who put our stuff together. They're like, no, it was on social media for hours. This guy's head chopped off. I thought you're a moron if you want to go see that. Why would you want to see that?

But these companies -- like I said, I don't blame them for everything. Like I said, that's parental guidance, that's important. Congress should have been passing laws many, many years ago saying, hey, if you show violence, we're going to punish you.

Now it's too late. You're trying to put the toothpaste back in the tube.

KING: I do think the companies, Charles, could be doing more.

BARKLEY: They should be doing more.

KING: They created the situation, I think, that they can figure out a way to make it better. The problem is there're no guard rails. That's what's so frightening. And that's why the parents are saying, look at what is happening to our children.

BARKLEY: We're all complicit. We're all -- but the companies are complicit, where parents are complicit, there should be many guardrails.

KING: We got work to do, America.

This is a Selfie's Choice for the smart phone era. Most of us have smart phones. You guys have smart phones. Everybody in here is a smart phone. You do have a smart phone.


KING: And if you walk around with a flip phone, who knows? You're not on social media.

So, Siggi's, a yogurt company, is offering to pay people $10,000 if you lock away your smart phone for a month, a digital detox. Would you do it? We should say that they will give you a flip phone.

BARKLEY: I would really do it. KING: $10,000 for a month, yes.

BARKLEY: Because I'm going to save money. You know, so many people ask me for money on a given day and a given week.

KING: Because you also told us Charles you walk around with bags of cash. That's crazy.

BARKLEY: Well, that's because I need it. But I get -- I don't think -- you know, Gayle, I don't know about your life, but I get sick and tired of people -- I get 10 to 20 people asking me for money all the time, every day, every week.


KING: People you know, people you know?

BARKLEY: Yes, family and friends. And it drives me crazy. It makes me feel bad.

So, if I could get away from that, I'd make -- I'd come out ahead. But because I get frustrated like I'm not a bank, I'm not an ATM.

KING: You've never even been to the ATM.

BARKLEY: I can't get enough money out of that thing, Gayle.

KING: But you've never really never been to the ATM.

BARKLEY: I've never used ATM.

KING: Why Charles?

BARKLEY: Because you can't get enough money out of it, Gayle.

KING: You sound like an old man that hasn't caught up with the times.

Gayle, I am an old man who haven't caught up with the times.

KING: We've been talking about a new streaming. There's a new streaming champion. New streaming champion for the year of 2023, do you know who the number one show was on streaming? Suits.

You've seen Suits.

BARKLEY: I love Suits.

KING: I didn't see it when it was on. It was the most streamed show ever in a single year with 58 billion minutes, that's billion with a B, watched. The previous record, by the way, was 57 million. That was set by The Office back in 2020.

I love Suits. I mean, I love The Office. I've never seen Suits.

Suits ran from 2011 to 2019 featuring the future Dutchess of Sussex. Sussex, that's Meghan Markle. That's why I think led to the streaming uptick, because I think people want --

BARKLEY: No, it wasn't.

KING: Oh, yes. I believe people want to just see Meghan on that show.

BARKLEY: Well, there was other people on the show.

KING: There was other people on the show?

BARKLEY: Yes, there was other people on the show.

KING: He says, who is a secret to the success of Suits? I say it's Meghan because, listen, I like Meghan Markle and I think people are curious to see how she did.

What do you what do you attribute --

BARKLEY: I think it was me and Harvey, me and Harvey on the show.

KING: Please roll the tape.


BARKLEY: Harvey, you were right. That's one of the best steaks I ever had. I want you to tell me why you actually bought me here.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Can't the man just take his client out to dinner?

BARKLEY: A man can, but you need something. And I just did you that little favor.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That wasn't a favor.

BARKLEY: I took 15 minutes of picture with some dipshit from Philadelphia. That's not a favor.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That was an appetizer. I need you to get Magic, Bird, Hakeem and Michael to do the same thing.

BARKLEY: You're a funny guy, you're kidding right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did I ask you if you were kidding me when you called me that night?

BARKLEY: You asked me to sign with you and I did.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I also said that I would need something from you someday, and taking selfies with some dipshit Sixers fan isn't going to cut it.

BARKLEY: Harvey, you need to chill with this soul off (ph) thing. If not, every single day you go into the office, he's going to be trying to stab you in the back.

(END VIDEO CLIP) KING: See? I think we've seen enough. We've seen enough. We've seen enough. If I didn't know better, Charles. I would say that was artificial intelligence, deep fake.


KING: Did you really do that?

BARKLEY: First of all, artificial intelligence, we call that a work shack (ph). First of all, that was my favorite show. That was Gabriel Macht. I think it was so much fun. I feel --

KING: So, how did you get to -- how did that happen?

BARKLEY: They found out, because I talked about it on the show all the time, and they invited me to do a cameo. It was really cool. I had a great time. I got to ask them to meet Meghan.

KING: Oh, you did? Okay.

BARKLEY: Everybody, my man Rich was on there. I met them all. It was really awesome. It was one of the coolest experiences of my life.

KING: So, they heard that you liked it and they invited you to come on?

BARKLEY: To do a cameo.

KING: So, were you playing Charles Barkley?

BARKLEY: Yes, I played Charles Barkley, but it was fun, though, yes. You know, Toronto's my favorite city in the world. I mean, I'm never going to go there again because the Raptors suck.

KING: And they speak so highly of you. But one more thing, how many takes did it take you to do that, playing Charles Barkley, doing Charles Barkley.

BARKLEY: Well, you know, when you do a commercial, it takes a little time. I think it took about three hours to shoot that little spot. But it was cool because Gabriel was awesome.

KING: A round of applause for Charles Barkley, the actor, the actor.

We have Bob Costas in the studio tonight, but coming up next, Democrats and Republicans in Congress finally trying to work together on something. But former President Donald Trump is telling him to blow it all up. We'll explain. We'll unpack that with our panel right after the break.

You are watching King Charles. Be right back.


[22:15:00] KING: Welcome back. It does seem like we can all agree on this, that we need to come up with some kind of solution for the crisis at the border. You've seen what's happening there. The Senate has been negotiating a bipartisan immigration bill, but Presidential Candidate Donald Trump has other plans. He's reportedly asked members of his own party to block a bipartisan deal and save it as a campaign issue, request that is seen as divisive, even among his fellow Republicans.


REP. MIKE JOHNSON (R-LA): We have a catastrophe at our southern border. It is because the border has been deliberately opened wide that we see the terrific horrors that are taking place across our country right now.

Mr. President, it says very clearly you have all the tools and the executive authority necessary to reverse the catastrophe that you have created.

SEN. MITT ROMNEY (R-UT): I think the border is a very important issue for Donald Trump. And the fact that he would communicate to Republican senators and Congress people that he doesn't want us to solve the border problem because he wants to blame Biden for it is really appalling. (END VIDEO CLIP)

KING: Appalling is the word a lot of people are using.

To help us unpack this, our political historian and author her name is Leah Wright Rigueur, I love that name, alongside Hari Kondabolu. The New York Times called him one of the most exciting political comedians in stand-up. Hello, exciting political comedian in stand-up. Leah, it's nice to have you here.

So, what do you make of this? It's a bipartisan deal that people say has gone farther than many, many in the past, and yet there seems to be a movement to stop it.

LEAH WRIGHT RIGUEUR, CNN CONTRIBUTOR: So, I want to know why is the former, disgraced president of the United States actually deciding what is going to happen in the House or the Senate. And I think it's a deeply cynical strategy.


It's ugly, it's chaotic. And it's actually -- I know that Trump is thinking that this is going to be his issue. It's the majority of people who are MAGAs are with Trump because of the immigration issue. But it's also muddying the waters. It's also dragging out the crisis. It's ensuring that money for Ukraine, I guess vital money for Ukraine, doesn't end up in Ukraine and I think it's actually going to backfire.

I think that Democrats have an opportunity to show that, look, it's Republicans again, no ideas, just want to stonewall and it's the president influencing the party because this is his party, this is who he is. HARI KONDABOLU, COMEDIAN: I mean, to me, I'm not even disappointed with Trump because Trump is going to Trump. That's just inevitable, right? For me, it's more about Biden and this plan to begin with. This plan doesn't do anything for DREAMERs. It doesn't do anything with regards to a pathway to citizenship. It allows the president to close up the border, not arbitrarily, but, still, that's a hell of a power. And it's like you're doing something that Trump would want to do.

And the only reason we elected this ancient man was so he could like not be Donald Trump. And he's decided to be Trump-lite. And that is the last thing any of us want, like he's dividing a base. For all these political points, he's winning. He's not winning them on the left between this, between what's happening in Gaza, like he's losing a lot of the left. I think he's assuming that he's going to get all these middle of the road voters, which I don't think is guaranteed.

RIGUEUR: And they don't exist. They, that's a really important --

KING: Who doesn't exist?

RIGUEUER: Those middle of the road, these mythical independents who, you know, don't vote Republican, don't vote Democrat, that's actually not true. What we have in this country are people who may say they're independent, but they either vote Republican or Democrat.

BARKLEY: Well, number one, I want to thank Senator Romney for actually saying the right thing.

We need to do something about immigration. We were watching the story earlier about people living on the bridge in Colorado. You know, they got to be freezing to death.

But I'm going to pick it back on something you said. These politicians, they're afraid of Trump's base because they got to go back to their state and run for office. That's why they're afraid. This dude has so much power over the MAGA group. These politicians, they are afraid.

KING: Even though they disagree with them, Charles, they won't speak up.

BARKLEY: Because they have to go back to their state and win their election. And that's what they're afraid of. I'm so proud. I mean, Romney is retiring, but at least he got the courage to stand up and say, we need to fix our immigration thing right now. To push it, to kick the can down the road and wait another month, two, three, four, six, it just makes things even worse. But I'm glad he did have the courage to say it because it's appalling.

And this is a serious issue. And we don't need --

KING: Which is only getting worse.

BARKLEY: And it's only going to get worse that we keep pushing the -- kicking the can down the line. But this dude has so much power. These politicians and some of these guys are cowards, to be honest with you, because some of the stuff he said about them, their wives and their families, you know, we had to --

KING: And they're now supporting him.

BARKLEY: We had that conversation, I think, last week. Listen, I don't mind having different opinions and people, but if you were to get personal, I'm not endorsing you. And that will let me know that they're cowards.

KING: What do you think? I'm curious here are your thoughts about how Donald Trump handles Nikki Haley and his language that he uses to describe her and how he's taken her.

We have a sound bite? All right. We'll play it for you. We'll play it for you.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think Trump mocking your birth name was racist?

NIKKI HALEY, REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE: I mean, I think we can let other people decide that. I think that you look at it and it's kind of like the Tim Scott, you sleep with yourself. I mean, we'll let Donald Trump sleep with that all he wants.


KONDABOLU: I'm pretending I'm sipping tea right now.

KING: How's that tea taste, Hari?

KONDABOLU: I mean, bitter. You know, it just feels she almost deserves what she gets in this situation.

KING: What do you mean?

KONDABOLU: Because it's clearly racist. It's a loud dog whistle. He's basically -- it's a dog scream, the bark.

KING: It's not subtle. It's a megaphone.

KONDABOLU: It's a megaphone. You're saying, Nimrata, and then having people laugh, you know what I mean? Like it's just short of -- and she smells like curry. Like it's middle school bullying. And instead of standing up for yourself and said, yes, my name is Nimrata, I'm proud of it and I have no issue with it, and what you're doing is racist.

She's not going to do that because she doesn't want to lose the racist demographic. That's what she's fighting for. Because if she uses the R word, which is racism, then it's done, she's going to alienate so many people. She doesn't want to lose those people. What are you fighting for then?

BARKLEY: So, number one, you're 100 percent correct. Number one, she should have said the answer was simple, yes, it was racist.


But I actually love what she said because when she went back, go back a couple of weeks ago, when she said she doesn't believe America was ever racist, she was trying to -- no.

KING: That was unfortunate.

BARKLEY: First of all, that was unfortunate and stupid for her to say, but it really bothered me. What really bothered me the most, she was trying to reach his base. And that's what really bothered me more than anything. Because she's like, well, I'm trying to appeal to his voters, that's why she said America has never been racist. That bothered me more than anything.

KING: So you don't like how she's handling it though? You don't like that?

KONDABOLU: No. I don't like how she's handling it at all. It doesn't show respect and dignity for yourself, if anything. And, for me, it's like, man, we finally got rid of Bobby Jindal and now I got to deal with this? It's just --

RIGUEUR: But can we talk about the environment where she said this too? She's on the Breakfast Club, which everybody knows --

KING: Charlamagne tha God, D.J. Envy, yes.

RIGUEUR: Exactly. And the demographic, the target demographic of the Breakfast Club is urban audiences and/or African-American, black minority listeners. So, that was the perfect opportunity to come on and say, actually, you know what? It was racist.

KING: So, you guys don't think she's in a tough spot in terms of she doesn't want -- she still needs those voters. She still needs those voters. So, she's trying to straddle both sides of teams.

KONDABOLU: But at the end of the day, candidates get elected because of who they think you are. But we don't know who she is, because if she's not even going to stand up for herself there, who are you? What do you stand for? What do you get -- like, when you're in these situations and you find a way to talk around them as opposed to answering them, well, I don't know who you are. At least with Trump, you know who he is.

KING: Thank you very much.

We've got legendary sports broadcaster, you know him, Bob Costas is here. I just saw him in the hallway before I walked into the wall. We're going to ask him everything about the Super Bowl, super couples and some unbelievable stories about one of the hosts of the show. I wonder what that is. You guess.

We'll be right back.




UNKNOWN: Well, shout out to the newest members of the Chief's Kingdom, Taylor Swift, who has officially reached the Super Bowl in her rookie year.

TRAVIS KELCE, KANSAS CITY CHIEFS: Shout out to Taylor. Thanks for joining the team.


KING: Yeah, she's joined the team. She has definitely joined the team. Taylor, Travis, and the Super Bowl, everybody's talking about. A lot of them are kind of irritated by it, but not us here at King Charles. Why? Because we love sports and we love, love.

With us now is a legend among legends, you could say. Bob Costas is here. He's hosted coverage of -- listen to this roster, NFL, NBA, MLB, golf, 12 Olympics and so much more. And he's won, how many of awards has this man won, Charles?

BARKLEY: That's got to be a misprint, it's a 28.

KING: It's a -- 28 awards. And Bob Costas --

BOB COSTAS, SPORTS BROADCASTER: That is actually a misprint.

KING: Oh, how many is it? Twenty nine?

BARKLEY: No, it's going to be more.

COSTAS: It's 29.

KING: It's 29.

COSTAS: I'm not supposed to know that, but I do because I've heard it often.

KING: Twenty nine.

BARKLEY: Well, I will admit, I used to hate you.


BARKLEY: Because --

KING: That's his way of saying welcome to the show, Bob.

BARKLEY: No, I had to get --

KING: What do you mean? What do you mean?

BARKLEY: No, this is actually true.

KING: Okay. BARKLEY: Ernie Johnson was in the same category with Bob every year.

COSTAS: Oh yeah.

BARKLEY: And we'd have to sit there like, it's all right, Ernie. Bob won every year. So, I'm just -- I did hate you for a minute.

COSTAS: Eventually -- eventually, Ernie won a handful himself, and he deserves every one of them. He's terrific.

BARKLEY: But you -- but you, just reading the stuff you covered --

KING: Yes.

BARKLEY: That's just amazing. Amazing.

KING: Because it's so many different kind of sports. That's what's so cool about you. We can also say he's a truth teller, because when Bob Costas has sat down in the seat, can I please get a close-up shot of my face? He sat down and goes, God, that thing's getting bigger. Look.


KING: It's getting bigger as the hours progress. I said we're going to try to make it through the hour. Hopefully it won't get so big. But the first thing you said, God, that thing is getting bigger.

COSTAS: Yeah. I hope it doesn't hurt.

KING: And guess what, Bob? It hurts. It hurts. But we're really glad you're here because I want to talk about the Super Bowl. It's coming up. What excites you most about the Super Bowl?

COSTAS: Well --

KING: Because it is like nothing else.

COSTAS: I think the Chiefs now, it can safely be said, are America's team. The Dallas Cowboys have had that moniker for a long time, and they're still a glamour franchise, but they haven't been to the Super Bowl since the mid-90s.

KING: For a hot minute, they were saying Detroit is America's team. For a hot minute.

COSTAS: Sentimentally, yeah. They would have been a sentimental favorite if they got to the Super Bowl, and it would have been a great storyline, 49ers are a good storyline, too. But now, the Chiefs have been to four of the last five Super Bowls.

They have the best quarterback in the game, even though there are others who are really good. He's exciting, he improvises, he's charismatic. They've got him. Andy Reid's been around a long time, went to the Super Bowl with Philadelphia and now with the Chiefs. They've got Travis Kelce and his romance with Taylor Swift.

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: He was a big deal to begin with, and now it blows up bigger. Plus, the State Farm commercials. You don't have to know a screen pass from a field goal to know something about the Kansas City Chiefs. So, they're America's team.

KING: But you guys know that now men are going to the barber shops, taking a picture of Travis Kelce with them, saying they want the Travis Kelce haircut, because they think that will help them get more dates. What do you think?

COSTAS: Well, yeah, provided they're, you know, 6'5 and ripped.

KING: Yeah.

COSTAS: And are headed to the Hall of Fame in Canton, I think they'll do well romantically if they can match up across the board with the haircut on top of it.

BARKLEY: I actually saw that on the inside edition the other night. I was like, there's a new craze going on at barbershop. They're bringing in pictures of Travis. I said, you got to be kidding me. Hey, that's not, hey, catching touchdown will help you meet women. Just getting a haircut won't do it


KING: But people are captivated by this love story.


KING: What do you make of it?


KING: I just think -- I think it's great.

COSTAS: I don't understand the people who have a problem with it.

KING: Exactly, Bob.

COSTAS: You know in the NBA Chuck, when Jack Nicholson was courtside for the Showtime Lakers, they took shots of him all the time. When the Yankees were doing great in the 90s, early 2000s, Jerry Seinfeld would be at the game sitting with Chris Rock. It's part of the scene. And you know, "The New York Times" had a piece the other day where they actually timed how many seconds per game Taylor Swift is on camera. It isn't that much. And when you watch a football game --

KING: Because they're not covering, they're not taking her when there's a play going on.

COSTAS: No, of course not.

KING: Yeah.

COSTAS: They're taking her reactions --

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: -- to certain things.

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: But you also see the reactions of drunken guys with no shirt on when it's 10 degrees below zero. And you're supposed to be charmed by that. I'd rather look at Taylor Swift.

BARKLEY: I was sitting -- I watched a tape where fans were screaming at her as she was leaving the game. If you're screaming at her because your team lost, I heard a couple guys --

KING: Was screaming negatively about her?

BARKLEY: Oh, yeah.

KING: What were they saying?

BARKLEY: You ruin football.

KING: No, please. Please.


BARKLEY: I said, wait a minute. Please. You just, first I'll just say, I'm going to look right in that camera. If you're screaming at Taylor Swift saying she ruined it, you're just a loser. You're just a loser or a jackass. You can be A or B.

KING: One of the two.

COSTAS: You know what? When it comes to the Super Bowl, where a lot of people who don't watch football all-year long, double the audience, even at the conference championship games, part of that is the half- time entertainment.

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: A huge part of it is the commercials.

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: So, for people, all of a sudden, because they don't like something about Taylor Swift, either they don't like the Chiefs or they've inferred that Taylor Swift might not be a Trumper, then they're annoyed by Taylor Swift. I can guarantee you that all this news on Fox News would not be happening if she was wearing a MAGA hat.

KING: Yeah.

COSTAS: They would love it.

KING: Oh. But look at all the new people she's brought to the NFL. COSTAS: Yes.

KING: You see young teen girls who are now watching football.

COSTAS: And it's hard to imagine the Super Bowl could have a larger rating. But in a small percentage, it may even up that. And in terms of merchandise sales --

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: - the Travis Kelce jerseys and all the rest, and the attention to regular season games, the NFL reigns supreme not only over sports, but over all of American entertainment. In a fractionalized universe, it's the only thing that consistently aggregates huge audiences, like 90 of the top 100 rated television shows in a given year are football games, almost all of them NFL games. And so, you would think they couldn't improve on that, but now they've tapped into another demographic.

BARKLEY: One thing that really warmed my heart, I've seen a bunch of dads watching the game with their daughters.

KING: Yes, I like it. And I was like, if you can't be happy, because as men, we're always trying to spend time with our daughters, they're the most important thing in the world. And these young girls, like dad, what's a screen pass?

KING: Exactly.

BARKLEY: What's pass and a fair -- and I'm sitting there like --

KING: What's a wide receiver? That's a tight end.

COSTAS: A tight end, they want to know because that's Travis.

KING: Have you ever seen a power couple, a sports power couple, that brings all of this together? This big before?

COSTAS: No, because you've got all the elements. The popularity of football, the fact that the games are on television, that the Chiefs have advanced all the way through to the Super Bowl. On an international level, you had Victoria and David Beckham in the soccer world. Justin Verlander is married to Kate Upton, and Justin Verlander is headed for the Hall of Fame as a pitcher.

KING: Baseball.

COSTAS: Way back when, the original one was probably Joe DiMaggio and Marilyn Monroe. But when they got together and were briefly married, JoDi's playing career was over. Plus, it was a black and white world. You didn't have all the outlets and all the gossip stuff and whatnot.

KING: But they were both at the top of their game. And say what you want, she can write a great song.

BARKLEY: But also, you got the fact that this was the summer of her and Beyonce.

KING: Yes.

BARKLEY: Like, I mean, you went to both concerts.

KING: Yes, I did.

BARKLEY: This summer, from an entertainment standpoint, there was nothing in the world happening more important, entertainment-wise, than Taylor Swift and Beyonce. It was the summer of women.

KING: Bob Costas, we don't want you to leave. We're going to take a break.

COSTAS: Okay, I'm going to do this in 10 seconds because I'll never have another chance.

KING: One Mississippi, two Mississippi. Go, Bob, go.

KING: Marilyn Monroe comes back from a goodwill tour during the Korean War to Korea. And she gets off the plane and Joe DiMaggio greets her. And she says, Joe, you've never heard such cheering. And he was a terse man. He said, yes, I have.


BARKLEY: I like that.

KING: Bob's going to stick with us. We'll be right back. That's good. That's good.





COSTAS: I'll make this statement, you agree or disagree. Charles Barkley is a great, great player, but Michael Jordan is in a class by himself clearly superior to anybody else in the league.

BARKLEY: I have another drink, Bob. I would never say another player is better than me. Never.


KING: Wow. We are back with sports' second most iconic power couple, Bob Costas is still here. I love looking at that old video of you, Charles.

BARKLEY: I love that and I meant every word. No and that's not --

KING: It sounds a little arrogant though, I have to say. BARKLEY: There's no great player who's not arrogant or overconfident.

First of all, you can never be great at sports if you don't think you're better than everybody else.

COSTAS: Do you think that's true, Bob?


KING: You do?

COSTAS: Yes. Some guys don't wear it on their sleeves --

KING: Yes.

COSTAS: - but the great ones have to believe, even if --

KING: That they're better than everybody else.



COSTAS: They have to believe that on this night or in this match, that I am at least the equal of this guy.

BARKLEY: Gayle, I got to play against Bird, Magic, Kareem, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan. There's no way I can look myself in the mirror if I went into a game saying, that guy's better than me. No. First of all, that was a bit --

KING: What about I'm just as good or we're equal as opposed to I'm better than? I don't know, that just sounds --

BARKLEY: Well, we're not out here trying to be equal. You're trying to be better than people, Gayle.

COSTAS: Gayle, that was 31 years ago. The 1993 finals.

KING: Thirty one years ago that interview was about? Wow.

COSTAS: Yeah, 1993, the Bulls against the Suns, and one game went triple overtime in Chicago.

BARKLEY: And Charles had like 56 that night and like 25 rebounds. So, you know, he was one of the greatest players.

KING: Was he good?

COSTAS: He was damn good.

BARKLEY: Google me, Gale.

COSTAS: He was damn good.

BARKLEY: Google me.

KING: I think I do need to, because I said, walking with Charles Barkley, what did I say? You were a power guard?


KING: Oh, don't do that.

BARKLEY: Oh, she did.

KING: I know. And then he went, excuse me. Yes.

BARKLEY: Hanging with Gale has been really humbling for me. She called me a power guard one day. And last week, this girl took a picture. And since she said, yeah, I just sent a picture of Gale King and some dude.

COSTAS: And some dude.


KING: Then she sent it to her mother and her mother said, that's awesome, dude. That's a great Charles Barkley. But he said, no, I was a power forward.

COSTAS: Yes, he was. And at 6'5", might have been really only 6'4", listed at 6'5", he was out rebounding guys who were 6'8", 6'9" and 6'10". He was the round mound of rebound.

BARKLEY: I got to get our crack staff on these notes and put that in there.

COSTAS: Yeah. By the way, he would have so much fun though. I've never told him this story. I'm at a game in the late 80s. He's playing with the 76ers. And I'm sitting with Ahmad Rashad along the baseline, actually not the baseline, sideline, like in the Spike Lee seats.

And for some reason, Mike Tyson shows up at the game, and the ushers are taking him down the seats and around the court, and they're going to seat him next to me and Ahmad as it happens.

And he passes under the basket along the baseline, and the ball goes out of bounds, and Charles saves it in bounds, and now the Sixers are going back the other way. But now he's face to face with Mike Tyson. And he stops and shakes Tyson's hand and talks to him.

KING: On the court?

COSTAS: No, not on the court, but under the other basket. Meanwhile, the game is going on.

KING: While the game is in progress?

COSTAS: He's just enjoying himself.

BARKLEY: I'm a big boxing fan, Gayle.

KING: Oh my gosh. You see?

COSTAS: Very few other people would do that.

KING: Yeah. And there's a reason for that. But you just said he scored 50 what?

COSTAS: Fifty six, I think he had in that game.

KING: So, lately, we've been seeing all these guys scoring. Like, Lucas scored 73 points. Joel Embiid, 70 points. Giannis is 64, Devin Booker 62, Karl Anthony Towns 62. What do you guys make of these high- scoring games?

COSTAS: Well, the reliance now on the three-pointer, which used to be a punctuation, and now it's a strategy. A disproportionate number of shots taken are threes. The mid-range jumper, you don't see as much anymore. Defenses are different now. You know, Michael Jordan's last game, the epic closing shot against Utah, the final score in that game is 87 to 86, the last game of the 98 finals. And he scored 45. Now, 45 out of 87 is a different thing than what's the norm now. The average game is probably 20 points higher than it was during your career.

KING: Do you think it's the three-pointer, too? Why they're going these --

BARKLEY: It's a three-pointer, first and foremost, but also these millennials have ruined my game.

KING: How so?

BARKLEY: It's become a three-point shooting contest. You can't play defense. It's kind of similar what's happened to the NFL. You just going to throw the ball 34 to 50 times a game. You can't play any defense on the wide receivers. Now, if you go back and look, I guarantee you there's 10 to 15 points difference in scoring from the 70s, 80s to the 2020s in football.

It's the same thing in basketball. It's become a three-point shooting contest. Steve Kerr has actually been going crazy about this lately. You can't play defense anymore.

KING: But Charles, you're not drinking a little glass of Haterade, are you?

BARKLEY: No, no.

KING: When you say these guys have ruined my game. No, because that sounds like the old man who's still saying when I used to play --

BARKLEY: No, anytime you said it, that's what they say to old guys. But Bob's got two points.

KING: Yeah.

BARKLEY: Number one, the three point shots and free throws. That's the reason scoring is going through the roof. You can't just sit here and say players are --

KING: They're not better players? Oh --

BARKLEY: They've been Michael Jordan? Or they've been Magic Johnson. They've been Larry Bird. They're not.


BARKLEY: There's nobody ever -- listen. As much as I love LeBron --

KING: Yes, we do.

BARKLEY: He and Kobe Bryant.

KING: Yes, we do.

BARKLEY: These guys aren't as good. LeBron's not on that list. Kobe Bryant's not on that list. Michael Jordan's not on that list.

COSTAS: Kobe scored 81 in one game.

BARKLEY: He did. But he didn't rely on the three. If he was shooting threes, he'd have had 102.

COSTAS: Maybe.

BARKLEY: But listen, between defense and three-point shots and free throws, that's the reason guys are scoring. Hey, number of respect for these guys. They're all great players. But all of a sudden, everybody in the NBA, every night, 125, 120.


I'm like, these teams ain't that good.

COSTAS: You know, bad.

BARKLEY: Have you seen the Wizards and the Pistols play? They should never get 125 points, ever.

KING: I don't know, it sounds like hatred from this side of the room, but I'm just saying. But you still admire the work that they do and love this game.

BARKLEY: I admire, I love the game. It's given me every single thing in my life, Gayle. I love the game.

KING: Me, too, me, too. Don't go anywhere. King Charles returns. Mr. Haterade's sticking around. We'll be right back.




KING: That'll do it for us. Has my lip gotten bigger?

BARKLEY: No, it hadn't gotten bigger.

KING: Because I'm rushing to the airport, I got to catch a flight in 45 minutes. Will she make it? Yes, she will. We thank you for watching. We'll be back in two weeks on Valentine's Day, 10 o'clock. Just do it with this information.

BARKLEY: Hey, have fun at the Grammys, Gayle. Have fun at the Grammys.

KING: Valentine's Day in two weeks. I wear a size 10 shoe, 10 or 12 dress. Do with that what you will. You can catch us on, you can catch me on CBS morning, 7 o'clock, but right now I'm going to the airports. I will not be there tomorrow morning. Abby Phillip will be right here tomorrow night at 10 o'clock. You don't want to miss that. But don't go anywhere because "Laura Coates Live" starts --

BARKLEY: Right now.