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NBA's Charles Barkley argues pro athletes deserve COVID-19 shot first for tax reasons

FILE - In this June 24, 2019, file photo, Charles Barkley arrives at the NBA Awards o at the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif. The former Auburn University star and NBA Hall of Famer says he's donating $1 million to Miles College, a historically black institution in Fairfield, Alabama. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

Hall of Famer Charles Barkley says pro athletes should be able to jump the queue to get the COVID-19 shot

Given the amount of taxes athletes pay, Barkley says that's reason enough for them to get the shot before everyone else

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Former NBA star Charles Barkley is suggesting professional athletes should be given the COVID-19 vaccine sooner than everyone else for tax reasons.

The Hall of Famer has picked his fair share of fights; with players, co-analysts, and even the Denver Nuggets’ mascot, Rocky the Mountain Lion. While he’s known for being outspoken, Barkley is raising eyebrows after weighing in on the vaccine rollout in the U.S.

Barkley’s remarks came while speaking on NBA on TNT.

“We need 300 million shots. Give a thousand to some NBA players, NFL players, hockey players,” he said. “I think they should let the NBA players and coaches all get the vaccine that’s just my personal opinion.”

Barkley says it’s only fair after all because professional athletes pay more tax than the general public so they deserve it.

“Listen, as much taxes as these players pay. Let me repeat that. As much taxes as these players pay – they deserve some preferential treatment.”

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell all said last month their players won’t be budging in line to get the shot.

The NHL had faced backlash in December after reports suggested the league wanted to buy vaccines for its players.