DHARAMSALA, 18 Feb: Enes Kanter Freedom, an outspoken critic of the Chinese government’s human rights abuses has been nominated for the 2022 Nobel Peace Prize.
While the NBA has kowtowed to China and shown the door to Freedom, a veteran of 11 NBA seasons, a Norwegian Parliament member has nominated him for the 2022 Nobel Peace Prize according to a report on The Atlantic.
“I’m honored and humbled to receive the nomination for the Nobel Peace Prize,” Freedom wrote on his Twitter handle and added that“Sometimes taking a stand is more important than your next paycheck.”
The 6 ft 10 in NBA veteran was traded to the Houston Rockets on February 10by his former team Celtics, four days later, he was released by the Rockets.
According to an opinion piece on the Washington Post, former chief speechwriter for President George W. Bush has stated that “the reason he no longer plays basketball has nothing to do with his performance on the court.”
“In his last game as a Celtic, Freedom had seven points and 12 rebounds in 12 minutes of play — including a beautiful three-point shot. What more likely cost him his career is his criticism of the genocidal Chinese Communist regime, and its brutal suppression of freedom in Tibet, Hong Kong and the Xinjiang region,” it read.
Additionally, Senate Republican Steering Committee chairman Sen. Mike Lee has demanded an explanation from the NBA as to why Freedom was traded by the Boston Celtics and then unceremoniously waived by the Houston Rockets.
“I would love an explanation from the NBA, I really would. I think a lot of people would very much like an explanation from them,” The Hill quoted Utah Sen. Mike Lee as saying in its report.
Freedom however remains undeterred by the poor treatment meted out to him by the NBA as he continued his campaign to be the voice for the voiceless though it cost his playing career.
Freedom made the rounds on Capitol Hill the past two days, including meeting with Utah’s two senators, to talk about China’s human rights record and its influence on the NBA, the desert news reported on Thursday.
The 29-year-old has don the jersey of Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, New York Knicks, Portland Trail Blazers and the Celtics on the basketball court. He has career averages of 11.2 points and 7.8 rebounds over 748 regular-season games.
Freedom, now a free agent has reportedly said that he’s open to continuing his career in Greece.