It’s safe to say that basketball fans in Turkey are extremely passionate about their teams and players.
After roughly a month of suiting up, the NBA lockout is officially over and it is time for Williams to get back to business in a different continent.
Yet the Turkish officials with Besiktas had to make sure he went out in style—and boy did he ever. Before a EuroChallenge game against ZZ Leiden on Tuesday night, the organization gave Williams a ceremony to remember.
After a brief introduction, Williams looked like a musical conductor as he led the fight song and chant for the team with slashing motions that made him look pretty freakin' sweet.
In America they retire jersey numbers with a somewhat bigger version of an actual uniform in the rafters. In Europe they put up a small billboard.
It’s incredible to see the impact an NBA player can have on a country despite only playing 15 games in their colors, and I think it’s proof that the most passionate and loyal fans reside outside of America. I don’t think Chris Paul would get a ceremony like this for New Orleans.
Hopefully Williams enjoyed all the love, because now it’s back to playing in front of half-empty Izod Center crowds in New Jersey that wish time could fast-forward a year so the team can move into their new Brooklyn arena. I’m not so sure this won’t be the biggest ovation Williams receives all season.
Maybe he should have stayed in Turkey after all…