Enes Kanter calls out “childish” Giannis Antetokounmpo after ejection

Associated Press

This all goes back to the first meeting between the Bucks and Knicks this season: New York’s Mario Hezonja threw down a dunk Giannis Antetokounmpo could not block then stepped over the Greek Freak.

To which Antetokounmpo responded next time he would punch Hezonja “in the nuts” if he tried that again.

Enes Kanter, the Knicks designated enforcer, got in Antetokounmpo’s face in Thursday’s game after knocking him down on a drive to the rim. That got Kanter ejected.

After the game, Kanter called out Antetokounmpo and it went back to the first game, via Marc Berman of the New York Post.

“I was very pissed because what kind of player are you … did he not get any PR lesson?’’ Kanter said. “You cannot say to the media, ‘I’m going to punch somebody in the whatever.’ If you’re the best player in the world or the worst player in the world, you cannot be talking about my teammate like that. It’s very childish of him. He’s an MVP candidate. He’s a cool dude and carrying that franchise, but you can’t be talking about my teammates like that….

“He’s the golden boy,’’ said Kanter, who went nose-to-nose with LeBron James last season. “He’s the golden child. I’m not trying to fight against superstars and All-Stars. It just happens. If it was something else, I would’ve gone after somebody else. Obviously he’s the golden child and they gave me two technicals. OK. Whatever? I’m going to leave the management to take care of all that stuff.”

Kanter also wanted Bucks assistant coach Darvin Ham fined because Ham was the one who separated Kanter and Antetokounmpo because Ham pulled Kanter back. Kanter felt the Bucks’ assistant coach should not be touching him. The NBA league office is reviewing the play (but they tend not to fine coaches who break up scuffles).

The Bucks swept the home-and-home with the Knicks on Christmas Day and Thursday.