"Oklahoma City is nothing but vast wasteland" NBA analyst Charles Barkley made that comment and many more over the years.
On air in 2006, Barkley accepted an invitation to visit Oklahoma from News9's Kelly Ogle back in 2006.
On TNT, Barkley told Ogle, "I'm going to take you up on that offer. I'm coming to Oklahoma City." Barkley made several on air promises that follow. So when he finally delivered on six years of talk, Oklahomans wanted more than to just listen.
Alisa Pope spotted Barkley walking in downtown Oklahoma City.
"I asked if I could get a picture and he said ‘Sure' and I asked if he was having a good time and he said ‘Yes, a little humid but that's okay,'" said Pope.
News 9 wanted to get some pictures of our own and ask "Sir Charles" a few questions too. After all, he claims this is his first visit. However, the News 9 archives show Chuck has been here before, playing with the Phoenix Suns in an exhibition game at the Myriad in 1994.
While trying to track down Barkley, News 9 spotted someone a touch taller and less likely to give his opinion of OKC.
"Would you mind talking to us about what you think of Oklahoma City?" News 9's Lisa Monahan asked of Shaquille O'Neal.
"Nope, talk to him [Charles]," replied Shaq.
Shaq put it back on Barkley and paused only a minute in front of the Skirvin to take a picture with a small group of children.
"I think [Shaq] was really tall and I felt like a crumb," Jeremiah Robinson said.
But the kids are still waiting to welcome Charles Barkley with some true Oklahoma hospitality.
News 9 finally spotted Barkley in front of the Skirvin, but due to the one-way streets downtown, by the time we got there, he was gone.