This summer, countless NBA players traveled back to their home countries to compete in EuroBasket. Among the international talents is Philadelphia 76ers guard Furkan Korkmaz. Over the years, he has consistently returned home to play for the Turkish national team.
In Turkey’s most recent matchup against Georgia, Korkmaz got into a heated exchange with an opponent and was ejected from the game. It was later reported that the Sixers guard was then attacked by multiple players on Georgia’s national team on his way to the tunnel.
“When Furkan Korkmaz is disqualified, he walks to the locker room with our conditioner Eren Hangun. Meanwhile, Bitadze, Shengelia and Sanadze trio attack Furkan and Eren with a security guard. The fight escalates as Eren tries to defend Furkan against four people,” Ismail Senol Tweeted.
Following the game, Korkmaz opened up on getting ejected and the heated escalation that ensued after. “As part of the game, he is going to say something and you are going to say something back. I reacted as a human being, as a man, I just showed a reaction,” he said.
Through his first two games in the European Championships, Korkmaz is averaging 6.5 PPG, 2.5 RPG, and 2.0 APG.
Since the dust has settled on this crazy situation, Korkmaz seems to be alright. Pat Gallen of CBS3 Philadelphia reported the 25-year-old is in good spirits.
“Hearing from a source that Furkan Korkmaz is fine and that there appears to have been some sort of altercation following his ejection,” Gallen Tweeted.
Fans React to Furkan Korkmaz’s EuroBasket Altercation
As expected, Sixers fans quickly rushed to social media to share their thoughts on Furkan Korkmaz getting into it with players on the Georgian national team. After seeing how fired up he was in the moment, many want him to carry that energy and intensity into this upcoming NBA season.
Furkan Kokrmaz Will Need to Bring Similar Energy to Sixers in 2023
Since joining the Sixers in 2017, Korkmaz has always had a semi-regular spot in the rotation. However, if he wants to keep playing time, he will need to bring that same intensity we saw in Turkey’s matchup against Georgia.
2022 was not a good year for the Turkish sharpshooter. After coming out of the gates strong with his impressive play at backup point guard, he struggled tremendously. His 7.6 PPG was the third-lowest mark in his career, and he posted his lowest three-point percentage for his career (28.9).
Following the Sixers adding De’Anthony Melton and Danuel House Jr. this summer, guard and forward minutes off the bench will be hard to come by. If Korkmaz wants to sneak his way into Doc Rivers‘ rotation, he will need to impress in training camp.
Given how essential outside shooting is in today’s game, Korkmaz has an avenue to staying on the floor. Efficient shooters will always find playing time, especially on a team like the Sixers, who need as much spacing as possible around their All-Star duo.
If Korkmaz can get back to being a near 40% shooter from deep like he was in 2020 and 2021, Rivers will have no choice but to keep him in the rotation moving forward.