Enes Kanter takes another shot at LeBron James amid China controversy
Kanter sent out a tweet that was clearly aimed in James’ direction on Wednesday morning. In the caption, the Celtics center wrote, “I am MORE than an athlete.” Clearly, this was a shot at LeBron’s slogan.
I’m MORE than an Athlete.
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) October 16, 2019
James’ initial comments on the protests came in response to a now-deleted message from Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey. James reportedly pressured the NBA to punish Morey after he tweeted pro-freedom support for Hong Kong.
Lakers’ LeBron James on NBA’s China controversy: “I don’t want to get into a … feud with Daryl Morey but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at hand and he spoke.” pic.twitter.com/KKrMNU0dKR
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) October 15, 2019
Kanter has long been an advocate for human rights in Turkey, and he’s faced some ramifications because of it, as have some members of his family. He sent out a tweet to remind everyone of the struggles that he and his family have endured under Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan:
-Haven’t seen or talked to my family 5 years
-Jailed my dad
-My siblings can’t find jobs
-Revoked my passport
-International arrest warrant
-My family can’t leave the country
-Got Death Threats everyday
-Got attacked, harassed
-Tried to kidnap me in Indonesia
FREEDOM IS NOT FREE
— Enes Kanter (@EnesKanter) October 15, 2019
After answering to a fair amount of criticism for his initial comments on the matter, James says he will discuss the issue no further:
“I won’t talk about it again,” James said via USA Today. “I’d be cheating my teammates by continuing to harp on something that won’t benefit us. We’re trying to win a championship. That’s what we’re here for. We’re not politicians. It’s a huge political thing. But we are leaders and we can step up at times. I’m not saying at this particular time but if you don’t feel like you should speak on things, you shouldn’t have to.”
I asked LeBron James on his response to the criticism on not speaking out on a freedom of speech/human rights issue. His response pic.twitter.com/3ub5hYsa22
— Mark Medina (@MarkG_Medina) October 15, 2019
Kanter and the Celtics wrapped up their preseason campaign with a 118-95 victory over the Cavs on Tuesday night. Now, they’ll look forward to their regular season opener on October 23 against the Philadelphia 76ers.