Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter was apparently pressured to stop his criticism of China.
The Turkish-born basketball player has become incredibly outspoken against the communist dictatorship in China, and not everyone involved with the league is happy. (RELATED: David Hookstead Is The True King In The North When It Comes To College Football)
During an interview on CNN, Kanter revealed that two unnamed NBA officials borderline begged him to take off his Free Tibet shoes prior to a game and later implied he might be banned for the move. The Celtics player asked if he was breaking any rules, and the officials admitted he was not. He added the officials later apologized.
Furthermore, he revealed that he’s spoken with commissioner Adam Silver about the situation. You can watch his full interview below. It’s fascinating.
.@EnesKanter says that he doesn’t care about the cost that he may face from criticizing China. But are the NBA concerned? Kanter told me he has discussed it with commissioner Adam Silver. “I told him… am I breaking any rules?”
“He said, no, you’re not breaking any rules.” pic.twitter.com/v2pDNklsGS
— Christiane Amanpour (@camanpour) November 10, 2021
Enes Kanter has guts made out of absolute steel. That dude is what a real hero looks like. That’s a man who is taking a real stand.
NBA star Enes Kanter hammered Nike for the company’s silence on the crimes of China.
The Chinese dictatorship is evil, but Nike stays silence so it can keep printing money.
The rest of the media might ignore Kanter, but I won’t. pic.twitter.com/QG9xEuCrhI
— David Hookstead (@dhookstead) October 26, 2021
The unfortunate reality of the situation is that this will almost certainly lose his career for his brutal criticism of China.
He’s spoken out about human rights violations in the communist dictatorship, China is furious and the NBA hasn’t publicly supported Kanter, which he pointed out in his interview with CNN.
Nike and China have an insane amount of influence over the NBA, and I’d be shocked if they didn’t flex their muscles against Kanter.
To the owner of @Nike, Phil Knight
How about I book plane tickets for us
and let’s fly to China together.
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) October 26, 2021
I hope he keeps it up. It’s refreshing to see a guy involved with sports who is actually making real sacrifices and taking a real stand.