NBA player refuses to be canceled, calls out league for blind support of authoritarian communist Chinese regime
01/01/2023 // JD Heyes // Views

Turkey-born NBA star Enes Kanter Freedom, who changed his name from Enes Kanter last year when he officially became a U.S. citizen, is taking a bold stance against the league for its unconditional support and partnership with the Chinese Communist Party in spite of Beijing's perpetuation of human rights abuses against the Uyghur Muslims and other minority groups in the country.

Freedom, who came to the U.S. as a teenager, recently spoke about the differences between his home country and his adopted one, saying, “Here [in the U.S.], there is freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of expression, freedom of the press. I didn’t have any of those with Turkey," according to 100 Percent Fed Up.

The NBA earns about $5 billion per year from its China partnership, so it's not been easy for Freedom. Despite his ability to play the position of center well and his size -- 6'10" with a 7'1" wingspan, it took a while for him to catch on with a team for the 2022-23 season. He last played for the Boston Celtics in 2021 and, before then, the Portland Trail Blazers.

During a recent appearance on Fox News, Freedom blasted the league and its commissioner, Adam Silver, for having such a close financial relationship with the ChiComs in spite of the regime's horrible human rights abuses.

“The NBA [is the] ‘No Boundaries Association,'” said Freedom. “The NBA gives free propaganda to a genocidal regime."

He then responded to a recent video posted by the Washington Wizards featuring Chinese Ambassador Qin Gang shooting free throws on the court before a game.


“I have been playing 11 years in the NBA and over 800 games,” he said. “I have never, ever in my whole career [seen] any ambassador of any government that takes the court before the game and takes free shots.”

“I remember when my manager sent me that video,” Freedom added. “I thought it was a joke, but I just – when I saw that tweet from the Chinese ambassador – I was like, ‘This is just disgusting.'”

Tried my first throw at an NBA game @WashWizards. Also renewed our special relationship as Washington Wizards was the first NBA team to visit China in 1979 when our two countries established diplomatic relationship," Qin noted on Twitter featuring a short video clip of him taking shots.

Earlier this year, Freedom was traded from the Celtics to the Houston Rockets, but the team eventually waived him. He is certain that he was released because of his views about the Chinese government.

During his interview with Fox News, Freedom took another jab at the NBA commissioner.

“When the Muslims are being literally slaughtered in concentration camps in China, you [Adam Silver] are silent, and not only are you silent, but you’re literally working with this genocidal regime. You’re literally working with the most brutal regime in the world hand-in-hand and trying to make money and business over there,” he said.

“Please look me in the eye and say you don’t know nothing about the 3 million people in concentration camps in China [who]are getting tortured and raped every day. Shame on you," he added.

It's unclear whether Freedom will be able to catch on with another NBA team ahead of the season, but one thing is sure: He isn't about to change his views on what he calls, rightly, the most brutal regime on the planet.

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