Enes Kanter Calls Out LeBron James Over Nike Partnership, Social Justice Activism

Enes Kanter and LeBron James
Enes Kanter and LeBron James / Elsa/GettyImages

Enes Kanter has been on a crusade this NBA season to bring attention to various social justice issues involving China. He spoke out in support of Tibetan independence on opening night and appeared on CNN. He even went so far as to tweet out that he was not receiving playing time while with the Boston Celtics as a punishment for his activism, which head coach Ime Udoka told reporters and Kanter himself was false.

Now, Kanter has taken aim at LeBron James. He tweeted out a graphic of Nike shoes adorned with messages about the various human rights violations that the international community has criticized China for, and accused James of valuing money over morals in regard to his Nike partnership.

This is a repeat of the intense criticism James faced in the fall of 2019, when he chose not to comment on Daryl Morey's support of Hong Kong independence. It is also not the first time Kanter has called out James; in one of his CNN appearances, the center criticized James' decision to not advocate for vaccines.

We will see if LeBron responds. He has generally steered clear of any discussion about China, but that may change when accused of not really caring about social justice by a fellow player. LeBron's Lakers will come to Boston on Friday to play the Celtics, and this will undoubtedly be a matter of discussion in the press room.