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Turkish big man excited to play after sitting for nearly 2 years

Published: Sunday, Aug. 21 2011 9:19 p.m. MDT

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byronbca
Salt Lake City, UT

Kanter may have been unlucky, but unlike most NBA players he will be playing competitive basketball for his national team. Hopefully he'll get some good coaching and will be able to improve his game. I can't wait to see this guy play, hopefully we won't have to wait another year.

Coyoteghost
Saint George, UT

Ice on knees, and hasn't played in two years? What doth the future hold for the Iceman?

Calgary
Calgary, AB

So far in those friendlies ( I watched 4 from 6) Kanter showed me nothing that he is worth 3 pick. Slow on help defense, little lift, poor screens, numerous bricked layups. Some flashes of post up moves and rebounding but in general very rusty so far. Fesenko gave him fits in game vs Ukraine, Koufos outplayed him badly in game vs Greece. Of course after not playing for almost 2 years it was hard to expect anything better, plus Turkey as a team is horrible and is full of one on one chuckers. Jazz fans will need to be very patient with him as he is not close to producing in NBA on regular basis.

JFFR
Salt Lake City, UT

Kanter played in the Euro tournament last week. Apparently he looked like a 19 year old (he wasn't great.) You could watch the games online, unfortunately I was working. Did anyone at the DesNews watch the games? Could you give us an update on what you thought?

BrianDavis1326
Clearfield, Utah

Yeah, he's mighty unlucky. He's about to become rich putting a little ball in a hoop...if only we all had that luck. Yeah, I know, the story is about him being unlucky from a basketball sense, but please, choose the headline name better next time.

Veracity
Morgan, UT

Unlucky Kanter...Unlucky draft...Unlucky Jazz...Unlucky year...Unlucky...Unlucky...Unlucky.

byronbca
Salt Lake City, UT

I watched some clips on youtube that pointed out the good and the bad and I thought that he showed flashes he could be really good, but also struggled at times.

Here is what one NBA analyst thought after watching 3 games: "it should become obvious that Kanter needs a little more work than probably expected. The good thing about it is that some of the things that need correct (help defense, recognizing double teams, setting screens) are things that tend to get better with more experience."

The talent is there but he is either raw or rusty or a little bit of both.

Madden
Herriman, UT

This is the problem with drafting unknowns - of course they have nice highlight reels, they cherry pick the best clips!

Why the NBA execs continue to reach for potential (i.e. too young or too little info on international players) is beyond me. Start picking up successful college players who have shown they can play at a high level against very good competition in high-pressure situations.

ouisc
Farmington, UT

Are the freshly drafted players already under contract for the 2011-12 NBA season (if there is one)? I thought the Jazz had the rights to Kanter, but I didn't think we had signed him, yet.

byronbca
Salt Lake City, UT

Re Madden:

Because drafting solid college players might get you to the playoffs but rolling the dice on a kid with huge upside can help win in the playoffs.

From what I saw Kanter looked really good in 1 on 1 situations and rebounding, it was the team stuff that he struggled with. The team aspect of basketball can be learned, but the raw talent and size that Kanter possess can't be taught.

It took Hayward 6 months before he started to look like he knew was he was doing. It's not fair to condemn Kanter after 3 games. He did have 14 points against Germany.

The Rabbit (in Spanish)
Salt Lake City, UT

I'm confused. I thought taking two years off from playing sports was an unfair advantage for the player. Perhaps if they put a suit and tie on him, had him walk around knocking on doors all day, then he could have been in better shape to dominate.

Calgary
Calgary, AB

@byronbca... it was 12 pts/4reb not 14, other game he played vs Germany he failed to score and had 4 reb and in game vs Greece he had 0pts, 0reb. Vs Serbia he had 6pts/1reb, vs Belgium 7pts,8reb and vs Ukraine 7pts/6reb ( Fesenko had 7pts/8reb... Jonas Valanciunas on the other hand in 6 friendlies Lithuania played so far had 5 double dig scoring nights, two double doubles ( 26pts/11reb vs Czech R. and 13pts/16reb vs Russia ) and more then held his own vs NBA players like Gasol brothers, Ibaka, AK and Mozgov. To early to tell of course but so far it looks like Jazz and Cavs are going to regret missing on JV and Raptors ended up with biggest steal.

Anonigma
Murray, UT

I've seen a little bit of Kanter over the past few weeks
(NOTE: THESE GAMES ARE ON CNN TURKEY AND THERE IS ONE ON THE 24th!)

Not much can be analyzed from these games however because of 3 reasons.
1) Turkey plays at a Junior Jazz level.
2) Euro ball is much less team oriented. He barely gets the ball.
3) Kanter's not very familiar to his teammates. As a result, communication is lacking, especially on screens. On the other hand, Jonas Valuncianus is much more familiar with his teammates and also gets much more time than Kanter, who has to fight for minutes with Asik and Erden.

3 Good things I noticed about his game:
1) Plays with a very high motor and strength. He'll be an elite rebounder and great man-to-man defender. He makes you fight for the spot and also fights for every rebound.
2) All his point have mostly come from O-rebounds.
3) Involved in every play. Improves every game. Stats don't tell the whole story behind him...His points/minute last game were the highest on both teams.

gchris
rock springs, wy

Years from now, Enes Kanter will be the answer to the trivia question: Who did the Utah Jazz pick instead of Jimmer Fredette?

9er4life
Provo, UT

I think Kanter will be allright once he is comfortable with his teammates. At the #3 pick, I think the jazz did the right thing by picking him. With such a weak draft, there just wasn't anyone out there deserving of the 3 pick. I think Alec Burgs is going to be an absolute stud with his athleticism. I can't believed he dropped to 12th pick. Go jazz.

Calgary
Calgary, AB

@Anonigma lets get facts straight, for Jonas Valanciunas same as for Kanter these are first ever games with National senior team. So there this no advantage in familiarity and just bare advantage in playing time as Jonas had major minutes only in the game vs Russia, other games he played about the same as Kanter. I could agree that Lithuania has better PG's and they utilize Jonas pick and roll game better then Turkey utilizing Kanter's post up/isolation game though.

armchairQBonthehill
Salt Lake City, UT

Nice article . . that explained a few things that I hadn't seen before in the media. But the glaring thing for me, that also has remained under the radar on this Jazz pick is that what kind of a "character guy" is Enes if he is taking handouts - - that eventually caught up with him and cost him his college career? I thought the Jazz were high on "character". Who is to say he wouldn't be taking handouts from dubious characters as a pro?

Rational
Salt Lake City, UT

Yeah, the guy from Turkey is unlucky. Worked hard, improved his game, then blew out his achilles. The other one who lost a college season because he got paid $30k, that's what happens when you break the rules.

ed
Los Olivos, CA

Can't the haters wait until he gets here, to lay siege to the guy? Remember Humphries? He was terrible as a 19-year-old with quite a bit of college experience. Now he is married to a celebrity.

Kobe scored 7 points a game as a rookie and shot only 41%. He had more turnovers than assists.....and that was with lots of help.

JFFR
Salt Lake City, UT

@armchairQBonthehil- from what I understand there was a private school that waived his tuition to come play basketball for them. I don't think it was considered a hand out or a shady deal. From what I understand (and I don't live in Europe, so I could be wrong) the family did nothing wrong. I think his parents just wanted him to go to the best school possible.

I heard another interview where they talked about how Kanter comes from a great family that Utahns would relate well with. His parents are professors at universities or something (the person saying this obviously doesn't understand Utah very well, cause I doubt European professors would have many beliefs that Utahns like! But atleast we appreciate a strong family :))

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