Charles Barkley and Michael Jordan were once fierce competitors on the basketball court but friends off the court until Barkley made some negative comments about the Hornets organization. They also have very different personalities where Barkley is characterized as very approachable and likable while Jordan often looks reserved and very uninterested.
Barkley is also known for his generosity, and there were often situations where he would give money to people if he likes them. Jordan is the complete opposite, and his mindset is that you have to work hard, and there is no such thing as free lunch.
The difference in their approach was evident when they both hosted on The Oprah Show back in 2004, and Charles Barkley shared a story about a homeless person they saw. The homeless person was wearing a sign asking for money so he can buy alcohol. Barkley appreciated the honesty and wanted to give the homeless person $100, while Jordan, on the other hand, was very strict. Jordan said that instead of begging for money, he should get a job in McDonald’s.
“I was going to give a homeless guy some money one night, and he smacks me on the hand. He said if the homeless guy can say, do you have spare change, he can say Welcome to McDonald’s, can I help you, please. He had a sign saying “no lying here folks, all money for alcohol and I thought the sign is so funny I pulled over and gave him a $100. It was a great sign, and he didn’t lie.”Charles Barkley, via The Oprah Show
Jordan’s ruthless behavior is something everyone had the opportunity to see in the Last Dance documentary. It’s not surprising Jordan was like that because he believed everyone controls their destiny and needs to work hard to achieve specific goals they set for themselves.