Enes Kanter becomes a U.S. citizen on Monday, and with it, will take a new name.
Kanter will change his name to Enes Kanter Freedom, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. Kanter retweeted Charania’s report, seemingly confirming the news.
It’s the latest in a series of high-profile moves from the Celtics center, who has called for freeing Tibet and blasted Chinese president Xi Jinping, LeBron James and Nets owner Joe Tsai.
Kanter, whose advocacy started after a public spat with Turkish dictator Tayyip Erdogan, has been vocal in calling out China’s human rights abuses. As a result, the country has banned Celtics games from its airwaves.
In the case of Tsai, Kanter called the Nets owner “spineless” on Twitter. Tsai, who co-founded the Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba, called Hong Kong protesters “separatist” two years ago.
As for James, who criticized Sixers GM Daryl Morey following his support of protesters in Hong Kong, Kanter tweeted, “Money over Morals for the ‘King.’ Sad and disgusting how these athletes pretend they care about social justice.”
“They really do ‘shut up & dribble’ when Big Boss says so,” he said in a later tweet. “Did you educate yourself about the slave labor that made your shoes or is that not part of your research?”
Kanter also told CNN that he was asked not to wear “Free Tibet” shoes before the Celtics’ opener against the Knicks, but did so anyway.
Changing his name will presumably result in “Freedom” being on the back of his jersey, perhaps bringing more awareness to his activism.