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Charles Barkley was traded to the Lakers (briefly) in 1992

Chuck remembers the time he thought he was a Laker and had some drinks on game day.

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The most interesting piece of Richard Deitsch's SI.com interview with Charles Barkley published Sunday was an insider's version of a trade no one appears to have known about. Barkley told Deitsch that in 1992, as rumors swirled constantly, the Round Mound was told he'd been traded to the L.A. Lakers for James Worthy.

Here's Barkley's quote from Deitsch's Q&A:

It was going crazy for two weeks so I knew it would come down to Portland, [the] Lakers or Phoenix. So I get a call from my agent one morning and he said, "Philly has traded you to the Lakers." So I went to lunch and started drinking. I'm f---ing so excited that I am going to the Lakers. Three hours later I get a f---ing phone call from my agent saying that the Sixers backed out of the deal. I said, "Oh, s--t, I'm feeling pretty good right now." So I went out and played that night.

According to a Philadelphia Inquirer story from that time period, the deal was something like Barkley and Ron Anderson for James Worthy and Elden Campbell. Barkley would eventually be dealt to Phoenix for Jeff Hornacek, Andrew Lang and Tim Perry. Worthy only had two more seasons left in him, and Philly flipped Hornacek for Jeff Malone after a year, so it ended up being mostly a wash for the Sixers.

The Suns went on to make the NBA Finals and come close to knocking off Michael Jordan's Bulls. The Lakers wouldn't win a playoff series until 1995 and make the finals until 2000. This is really one of the ultimate what-ifs.