Charles Barkley Gets Special Gift from Oilers’ Leon Draisaitl

Charles Barkley

Getty Charles Barkley, TNT

There has been yet another development in the unexpected crossover between the NHL‘s Edmonton Oilers and the “NBA on TNT” broadcast crew.

NBA analyst Charles Barkley requested a jersey from one of his favorite Oilers players – Leon Draisaitl or Connor McDavid – after his colleague, Shaquille O’Neal, received an autographed jersey and stick as a gift from Oilers winger Zach Hyman during TNT’s NBA coverage on May 8.

Draisaitl, for his part, was happy to oblige. During TNT’s pre-game coverage of the NBA Western Conference Final between the Dallas Mavericks and Minnesota Timberwolves on May 26, Barkley received an Oilers No. 29 jersey signed by the superstar forward .

“Oh my goodness,” Barkley said upon receiving the unexpected gift. “Leon Draisaitl, thank you… I don’t know if you saw my brackets. I got y’all winning the Stanley Cup.”

NBA’s Love Affair With Oilers Continues

Draisaitl’s gift to Barkley follows the “Shaq Hyman” stunt from April in which O’Neal visited the “NHL on TNT” set under a hockey persona named after the Oilers forward. In addition to having first names that rhyme, O’Neal and Hyman also share a talent for scoring in the paint; Hyman scored a career-high 54 goals during the 2023-24 regular season and currently leads all NHL skaters with 12 goals during the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

After he received a signed sweater from Hyman, O’Neal said he would pay the Oilers not to send Barkley a jersey. Of course, they sent him one anyway.

Poking fun at O’Neal’s comments, Draisaitl added a special message to Barkley’s jersey: “Tell Shaq to keep his cash!”

When O’Neal asked Barkley if he could look at the jersey, he was quickly denied.

“I’m not letting you touch my jersey,” Barkley said. “No, no, no.”

Draisaitl’s Oilers Look to Retake Lead in Western Conference Final

With Barkley and O’Neal backing them, the Oilers will play their first home game of the Western Conference Final on May 27 when they host the Dallas Stars in Game 3.

The Oilers will look to rebound from a 3-1 loss in Dallas in Game 2 on May 25. They won Game 1 of the best-of-seven series on May 23 when McDavid scored in double overtime for a final score of 3-2. Edmonton has yet to lose consecutive games in the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs, rebounding for a win in each game following their four losses.

Edmonton is 4-2 at home in the postseason, but they are facing a Dallas team that is 5-1 on the road during the playoffs after tying for the NHL lead with 26 road wins during the regular season.

Draisaitl leads all NHL skaters with 25 points during the playoffs, and he is tied for second in goals (9) and assists (16). He is averaging nearly two points per game, but he was held without a point for the first time through 14 postseason games in Game 2 against the Stars.

According to NHL PR, Draisaitl can extend his postseason-opening home point streak to seven games with a point in Game 3 against the Stars. He can become the ninth different player in franchise history to record a run of that length, joining a group that includes McDavid.

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