Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter, an outspoken human rights advocate, is changing his name to Enes Kanter Freedom as part of his celebration of becoming a U.S. citizen.
The Athletic first reported Kanter’s announcement on Sunday.
Kanter’s manager Hank Fetic told The Associated Press his client will attend his citizen’s oath ceremony on Monday, and at the same time complete his legal name change.
Boston Celtics center Enes Kanter is legally changing his name to Enes Kanter Freedom, @TheAthletic @Stadium learned. Kanter will be his middle name, Freedom is his new last name. He becomes a U.S. citizen on Monday.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 28, 2021
Kanter follows other NBA stars who have legally changed their name.
In 1981, then-Golden State Warriors forward Lloyd Bernard Free changed his name to World B. Free. And in 2010, then-Los Angeles Lakers forward Ron Artest legally changed his name to Metta World Peace.
Kanter, an 11-year NBA veteran, has become a prominent critic of the Chinese Communist Party and his native Turkey's government over the past few years.
The Chinese government earlier this month pulled Celtics’ game telecast and highlights off the air after Kanter posted a video calling Chinese President Xi Jinping a “brutal dictator.”
Kanter also called out Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James for staying silent on Nike's production practices in China while profiting off sneakers bearing his name.
During a CNN interview, Kanter also called out basketball legend Michael Jordan, saying the Charlotte Hornets owner hasn’t done anything for the Black community.