Enes Kanter says other Turkish NBAers don’t talk to him

2020-07-18T19:51:53+00:00 2020-07-18T20:26:12+00:00.

Antonis Stroggylakis

18/Jul/20 19:51


Kanter believes that other Turkish NBA players are scared to talk to him.

By Eurohoops team/ info@eurohoops.net

Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter revealed that other Turkish NBA players like Ersan Ilyasova, Cedi Osman and Furkan Korkmaz don’t say a word to him when he tries to talk to them in games.

“What hurts me the most is other Turkish players in the league. We have Ersan Ilyasova, we have Cedi Osman in Cleveland, we have Furkan Korkmaz in Philly. Whenever we go against they don’t say a word,” Kanter said to Bill Simmon’s podcast. “I actually try to talk to them. I’m like ‘Hey dude, what’s up? How are you doing?’ No answer. Because they might be scared of the Turkish government that if they see a picture or video us talking, they might be in trouble, whatever. I try to cover my mouth with my jersey and try to talk to them. They turn their face the other way.

Kanter, a vocal critic of the current Turkish government and president Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has been labeled a terrorist in the country due to his support of exiled cleric Fethullah Gulen and his movement. Gulen has been accused by Turkish government to be the mastermind of the failed military coup of 2016.

“Especially Ersan, I played with him in OKC. I played with him on the national team. Cedi and Furkan played with my brother (Kerem Kanter) on the national team. No answer. That’s the thing that hurts me the most. They’re just scared. They don’t know any better,” Kanter said.

“In the end these players represent Turkey. Whenever we play against them I pray for them. I hope we win the game but I hope they play good. They are representing their families, their country, their people. I got a lot of respect for them. I don’t blame them. I understand that they are scared. When these things settle down and when this regime changes, I’m sure they’ll change their mind.”

“When I got drafted they said “from Turkey” before my name,” Kanter previously said in the interview. “And that made me proud and happy. And now my country literally calls me a terrorist. We just laugh with my teammates because they know what kind of personality I have. I always try to help others and stuff.”