Enes Freedom continues to go after the NBA: ‘They are trying to retire me at 29’

David Akerman
3 Min Read
Chuck Cook-USA TODAY Sports

Enes Freedom has been without a home in the NBA ever since being released by the Houston Rockets in February.

Freedom was acquired by the Rockets earlier this season in a trade with the Boston Celtics, but they released him before he ever appeared in a game for them.

Since then, he’s been vocal about wanting to continue to play basketball, but he’s said that he’s being blackballed by the NBA.

The big man recently decided to speak further about that point while talking to Greek newspaper Ethnikos Kirikas.

“I was in Portland last year, and I averaged a double-double, and we went to the playoffs,” Freedom said. “I was a starter. And they come and tell me after a year that I forgot how to play basketball?


“When I started talking about what’s happening in China, they stopped showing the Celtics on Chinese TV. This cost the NBA money. The NBA says that the league stands by our side when it comes to freedom of speech. I don’t believe it. They stand on our side as long what we say helps the league’s pockets, otherwise they’ll do whatever they can to finish you. I’m saying that because they are trying to retire me at 29. However, I know that I can play 6-7 years more because I love basketball, I’m healthy and I believe that people can see that I deserve to be in the NBA.”

During the 2020-21 campaign, Freedom appeared in 72 games for the Portland Trail Blazers, making 35 starts. He averaged 11.2 points and 11.0 rebounds in 24.4 minutes per game. However, he only saw 11.2 minutes of action per contest in the 2021 NBA Playoffs.

This season, Freedom averaged 3.7 points and 4.6 rebounds per game in limited minutes for the Celtics.

While Freedom has been able to produce double-doubles throughout his NBA career, he’s always been seen as a liability on the defensive side of the ball. That’s surely a reason why teams in the league seem to be a little hesitant to sign him.

His defense is definitely an area where he’d want to improve if he were ever to make it back to the league.

Freedom was drafted with the third overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, and he has career averages of 11.2 points and 7.8 rebounds per game.

It’s clear that Freedom isn’t ready to retire from the game of basketball, but one can only wonder if he’s played his last game in the NBA.

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David is a Miami native and University of Maryland graduate who has experience in writing, editing and video production. He has been following the NBA and NFL for as long as he can remember.