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Blazers coach Terry Stotts lauds ‘valuable’ Enes Kanter for playing through pain

Terry Stotts, Enes Kanter, Blazers

The Portland Trail Blazers have found a gem in Enes Kanter. Since acquiring him as a free agent a couple of months ago, the Turkish big man has been an integral part of their success, especially in the playoffs. Not only has he been able to fill in the void left by starting center Jusuf Nurkic, who is out with a season-ending leg injury, but he has also been able to be effective despite playing with a separated shoulder over the past couple of games.

Blazers coach Terry Stotts, who confirmed that Kanter is continuously receiving treatment on his injured shoulder, has been impressed by the big man’s dedication and courage in terms of playing through pain.

Kanter played 56 minutes in the Blazers’ 140-137 four-overtime Game 3 win last night. Despite receiving what seemed to be a cheap shot from Denver Nuggets All-Star Nikola Jokic during the contest, he’s still able to finish the game.

The Blazers now lead the series 2-1, and they have all the momentum heading to Game 4 Sunday night. And while almost all the attention goes to guards Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum, there’s no doubt that Kanter has made a significant contribution to Portland’s success in the postseason.

With the way he’s playing right now, he’s expected to receive a ton of offers this June, as he’s set to become a free agent after this campaign. But no one would be surprised if he stays with the Blazers and be part of the franchise’s foreseeable future.