It may not show up in the stat sheet, but players like Knicks center Enes Kanter have an additional value because they’ve earned an “NBA hero pass,” according to The Ringer. Basically, in the words of the author, “A player does a thing, be it on a basketball court or otherwise, that stands as something greater than itself—a symbolic act, really—that earns him a special and specific level of acclaim.” Kanter, for example, earns his Hero’s Pass for going after bigger superstars like LeBron James on social media or Kevin Durant on the court to defend his team’s honor.
Taking a Shot at Explaining the NBA Hero Pass
The Ringer makes case why players like Enes Kanter achieve special status.
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