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Enes Kanter lives out of hotels, still receives death threats for criticizing Turkish President Erdogan

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

(Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

Just months away from becoming a United States citizen, Enes Kanter still needs a panic button by his bedside for the continuous threats he receives from his home country of Turkey.

According to an interview conducted by NBC Sports Northwest Trail Blazers Insider Dwight Jaynes, Kanter explained how he lives out hotels–not houses or apartments–as a 28-year old, 10-year NBA veteran due to fear for his own life. The 6-foot-11 Portland Trail Blazers center and former Kentucky Wildcat has not been quiet about his harsh criticism against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the past, who has been accused of overthrowing the state of democracy in the country of Turkey.

Kanter once called Erdogan the “Hitler of our century” after the Portland Trail Blazers big man was detained at a Romanian airport back in 2017 and had his passport canceled. Turkey later issued an arrest warrant for Kanter in 2019, claiming that he is a member of a terrorist organization. All of these compounding issues have made it nearly impossible for Kanter to travel outside of the states, even when his job as a professional basketball player will sometimes require him to make a trip to Canada or overseas for a London-based game.

That, combined with the constant death threats he’s been receiving ever since he made public his stance against Erdogan, has made life in America vastly different than his teammates and most U.S. citizens. He’s always moving from hotel to hotel because “there’s a lobby, there’s people out there that can protect you…”, some of which are oftentimes equipped with a “panic button” that Kanter can press at any moment he feels uncomfortable.

“Actually, two years ago, I sat down with the FBI and we had a conversation,” Kanter told Jaynes. “They said whenever you need us, please don’t hesitate to call us. We’ll be there and you’ll be fine. They come to my room, they set up this thing, and they give me a button. If I feel ever uncomfortable or ever like I worry about anything, they always tell me push that button and we’ll be there in 2 or 3 minutes.”

Kanter says the support he’s received from Oregon Sen. Ron Wyden and the people of Portland, the city he calls “home sweet home”, helps him through the day. In particular, his Trail Blazers teammates are the ones that he says give him the hope and energy he needs to keep fighting on and off the court.

In the same interview, Kanter says he expects to gain United State citizenship this year in June after he was initially issued his green card back in 2016. He even said he’s thinking about adding an American name, as well. Any ideas for the BBN fan-favorite?


Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Recruiting reporter for KSR. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR

22 Comments for Enes Kanter lives out of hotels, still receives death threats for criticizing Turkish President Erdogan

  1. VirtuousPawz
    8:10 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    The religion of peace or maybe Erdogan is a Lakers fan?

  2. Ryan Lemonds Toupee
    8:23 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    Matt Jones does the same thing on KSR.

  3. blueblood80
    8:24 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    I’m sincerely sorry his life is like this. Fan Favorite? – did he ever play a game for us?

    • ukcamel
      10:18 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

      He was a fan favorite because of his big personality and because he stayed with the team dispute the ludicrous decision by the corrupt Mark Emmert that prevented him from playing.

  4. blueblood80
    8:36 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    He did not play a game for us. Now Chris Gettlefinger was a fan favorite!

    • chris gettelfinger is not walking through that door
      11:37 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

      Yep! Haha.

  5. Jambluehue99
    9:00 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    The speech police are out in full force tonight. I suppose stating facts about the Democrats targeting those with different political beliefs hits a little too close to home to some people at KSR.

    • VirtuousPawz
      9:46 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

      On KSR all opinions are equal, but some are more equal than other lol.

    • Jambluehue99
      9:52 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink


    • RealCatsFan
      10:35 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

      Um, last time I checked it was the members of Cult45 and the QAnon conspiracy crowd who invaded the Capitol and attempted to overthrow the democratic process. Or was that all staged as part of the elaborate plan?

    • Jambluehue99
      10:49 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

      I think that was ANTIFA and BLM.

    • RealCatsFan
      11:39 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

      Jam, is that what “Q” told you? I’m still waiting on the edge of my seat for all the arrests of those cannibalistic satan worshipping pedophiles who run the world.

    • sprtphan
      7:07 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

      Leftist Utopia: Destroy any and all opposition.

    • 4everUKBlue
      8:56 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

      As if it makes any difference who the POTUS (Puppet Of The US) is! This country is being destroyed by all parties, it’s not hard to see and it’s not by accident.

    • 4everUKBlue
      8:58 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

      What’s really happening here is people playing into the divide and conquer strategy that’s being used to divide this country.

  6. Gogh Big Bleu
    9:10 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    God bless this man.

  7. ziplock
    11:54 pm January 21, 2021 Permalink

    Leftists don’t like the truth. Commies have never been on the right side of history and they won’t this time either

  8. bosch8184
    8:25 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

    He never played a game for us, who cares? Glad he didn’t because that would have eliminated Jorts pegging that fat tub from Ohio State with a fast ball.

    Now, that is a great memory.

  9. kentucky jorts radio
    8:28 am January 22, 2021 Permalink


  10. bbn606
    8:35 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

    Kanter, you and I are all tied for points scored at UK.

    • 4everUKBlue
      8:57 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

      And are you also tied with him for time in practice? He did practice with the team to provide tough competition and help the team improve.

  11. Longtimefanandalmum
    11:58 am January 22, 2021 Permalink

    I vote he change his name to McLovin.