OKC Thunder: The flame still burns with Enes Kanter as he hosts youth camps in OKC

Enes Kanter is a solid human being, it’s that simple. It’s easy to see why his affection has continued since the OKC Thunder traded him last September.

Over the weekend Enes Kanter returned to Oklahoma City to host a free basketball camp for kids 14 and under. More than 550 children were in attendance.

Some players charge outlandish prices for their summer camps, such as Steph Curry who as recently as two summers ago charged $2.000 for his camp. In all fairness the player himself does not set the price, however, they know how much it costs to attend their camp. Most camp prices range anywhere between $150-$500. Some players host multiple camps such as the Thunder’s Russell Westbrook who host’s free camps and camps that parents pay for their kids to attend.

One aspect that makes Kanter’s camp unique is he returned to Oklahoma City to host multiple camps. Typically players host a camp in their hometown and the city they currently play in. Kanter has hosted multiple camps in multiple cities across the US.

While Kanter was in Oklahoma City he spoke to a pool of local reports including the Oklahomans/NewsOK.com’s Erik Horne below are Kanter’s best quotes:

On what he misses most about Oklahoma City

Kanter: I think just the people and the fans man. Because like every time I come here they show so much love. It’s like a family, I’ve been saying it for years now. Because every time I come here it’s not like players and fans it’s just like a family.

This quote from Kanter speaks volumes about the culture and relationship Oklahoma City has built with their lone professional sports team*. When Westbrook re-signed and when Paul George re-signed both players discussed how great the fans are in Oklahoma. Westbrook on many occasions has called Thunder fans the best fans on earth

*Only including the four major sports

One way Thunder fans show their dedication is showing up to the airport to greet the team after stellar wins and crushing losses. Fans also met George and Carmelo Anthony at the airport when the players first arrived in OKC. Keep up the good work Thunder Nation, your passion does not go unnoticed.

Whether or not he knew George would re-sign

Kanter: You know what? I know the organization and if it was anywhere else I don’t think he would have signed, but with Oklahoma yes. Because I know how good the organization is and just how professional and loyal they are.

This quote does not come as a shock either. The majority of players that have come through the Thunder organization over the past 10 seasons have praised the class and professionalism of the franchise.

Even the disgruntled Reggie Jackson, who demanded a trade praised the franchise. According to an SI report last summer after George arrived in OKC Jackson told George ‘he would love it’ in Oklahoma City.

Was he surprised DeMarcus Cousins joined the Warriors?

Kanter: Well of course it’s not illegal, but I think it’s a little weird they didn’t let that CP3 deal go through with the Lakers.

Kanter is referencing the infamous vetoed deal between the then NOLA Hornets that would have sent CP3 to the Lakers. The dynamics of the situations are slightly different. Foremost, when the trade was vetoed David Stern was the was the Commissioner of the NBA, not Adam Silver. Stern ran the league more uptight than his successor Silver.

Furthermore, since Silver has taken over the league has grown. To my knowledge, Silver has not vetoed a single trade since he took over as league Commissioner in 2014. The biggest difference between the two situations is in Paul’s instance it was a trade. In Cousin’s instance, it was a free agent choosing which team he wanted to join.

In conclusion, with the OKC Thunder set to part ways with Carmelo in the coming days. The fact OKC dealt Kanter for Melo stings more each day. When a player leaves via free agency or gets traded the chances of a return are slim. However, if any team and player are destined for a reunion it’s the Thunder and Kanter.