Kobe Bryant’s deal with Turkish Airlines outrages Armenian Americans

Posted in the McKinleyville Forum

Lakers

Rosemead, CA

#1 Dec 15, 2010
http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2010/12...

Lakers star Kobe Bryant's two-year endorsement deal with Turkish Airlines has sparked protest among Armenian Americans in Los Angeles and nationwide, some threatening to boycott the basketball player unless he backs out of the contract.

In a statement announcing the deal, Turkish Airlines described Bryant as a "global brand ambassador." The airline is seeking to publicize the start of nonstop flights in March from Istanbul to Los Angeles with the basketball star appearing in a blitz of TV, billboard, print and online ads early next year.

For years, Armenian Americans have pushed the U.S. to recognize the early 20th century killings of some 1.5 million Armenians in what was then the Ottoman Empire as genocide, a term the Turkish government has strenuously rejected.

California has 600,000 to 700,000 Armenians, with a heavy concentration in Southern California, said Aram Hamparian, executive director of the Armenian National Committee of America.

"Many of them are fans of the Lakers and fans of Kobe, at least until now," he said.

Armenians especially object to the airline's close connection to the Turkish government, he said.

"This is not a matter of a private company that Kobe has signed a deal with," Hamparian said. "It's a state carrier with a heavy government affiliation."

The Lakers did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Many outraged fans have taken to radio and social media sites to protest the deal, and some have threatened to boycott Lakers games and Bryant merchandise, said Caspar Jivalagian, executive member of the Armenian Youth Federation's Western region.

"There's a clear backlash already," he said. "People have been calling us, saying,'I hate Kobe' and 'I won't watch the Lakers anymore.' "

Some Armenians have called on Bryant to show remorse by using his fame to push U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) to schedule a vote on House Resolution 252, which would recognize the Armenian deaths as genocide.

"Kobe is a champion of national basketball and should be a champion of human rights," Jivalagian said. "We want to give him the benefit of the doubt and give him a chance to right this wrong."
Lakers

Los Angeles, CA

#2 Dec 17, 2010
Lakers wrote:
http://latimesblogs.latimes.co m/lanow/2010/12/lakers-kobe-br yant-turkish-airlines-armenian .html
Lakers star Kobe Bryant's two-year endorsement deal with Turkish Airlines has sparked protest among Armenian Americans in Los Angeles and nationwide, some threatening to boycott the basketball player unless he backs out of the contract.
In a statement announcing the deal, Turkish Airlines described Bryant as a "global brand ambassador." The airline is seeking to publicize the start of nonstop flights in March from Istanbul to Los Angeles with the basketball star appearing in a blitz of TV, billboard, print and online ads early next year.
For years, Armenian Americans have pushed the U.S. to recognize the early 20th century killings of some 1.5 million Armenians in what was then the Ottoman Empire as genocide, a term the Turkish government has strenuously rejected.
California has 600,000 to 700,000 Armenians, with a heavy concentration in Southern California, said Aram Hamparian, executive director of the Armenian National Committee of America.
"Many of them are fans of the Lakers and fans of Kobe, at least until now," he said.
Armenians especially object to the airline's close connection to the Turkish government, he said.
"This is not a matter of a private company that Kobe has signed a deal with," Hamparian said. "It's a state carrier with a heavy government affiliation."
The Lakers did not immediately return a call seeking comment.
Many outraged fans have taken to radio and social media sites to protest the deal, and some have threatened to boycott Lakers games and Bryant merchandise, said Caspar Jivalagian, executive member of the Armenian Youth Federation's Western region.
"There's a clear backlash already," he said. "People have been calling us, saying,'I hate Kobe' and 'I won't watch the Lakers anymore.' "
Some Armenians have called on Bryant to show remorse by using his fame to push U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-San Francisco) to schedule a vote on House Resolution 252, which would recognize the Armenian deaths as genocide.
"Kobe is a champion of national basketball and should be a champion of human rights," Jivalagian said. "We want to give him the benefit of the doubt and give him a chance to right this wrong."
The surest way to make a monkey of a man is to quote him.
Former Armo

Corona Del Mar, CA

#3 Dec 18, 2010
Lakers wrote:
<quoted text>
The surest way to make a monkey of a man is to quote him.
You didn't show, monkey boy. You challenged me and I showed up and you did not. This is a man's board little boy. You are not a man. You have been made into a monkey many times over. Go back to the playground with your Barbie dolls.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#4 Dec 18, 2010
Lakers wrote:
<quoted text>
The surest way to make a monkey of a man is to quote him.
Hey I know you want to pump my wife but it wont happent. She has a big p*nis may be in your dream. Go find your Real Armo brother.

Since: Sep 10

Corona Del Mar, CA

#6 Dec 18, 2010
Former Armo wrote:
<quoted text>
Hey I know you want to pump my wife but it wont happent. She has a big p*nis may be in your dream. Go find your Real Armo brother.
This is the real and offical Former Armo. You are Lakers = Real Armo signing my name like you said you did with Dana's name but your style of writing gives you away. You cannot sign in on this because I am the real Former Armo and you are the wuss and puss who challenged me and then did not show up. Go back to the swings at the playground little boy, that is where you belong.
Lakers

Corona Del Mar, CA

#7 Dec 25, 2010
Lakers play to sold out house on Christmas day. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not that upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation.
Real Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#8 Feb 1, 2011
Lakers wrote:
Lakers play to sold out house on Christmas day. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not that upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation.
lakers continue to sell out with hypocritical Armenians in the crowd cheering for Kobe. Lamar Odom's Kardahsian wife has not told him to stay home because of Kobe, she does not mind either. i will meet kobe any time, any day behind family fitness dumpster but he is too puzzy man to show up.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#9 Mar 26, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house Friday night against Clippers. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.
Former Armo

Hawaiian Gardens, CA

#10 Mar 28, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house Sunday night against New Orleans. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#11 Apr 1, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house last night against Dallas. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.
Former Armo

Hawaiian Gardens, CA

#12 Apr 4, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house yesterday against Denver. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

Where are all the protests? Hypocrites.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#13 Apr 6, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house yesterday against Utah. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos, even after muffing final play. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

Where are all the protests? Hypocrites.
Former Armo

Hawaiian Gardens, CA

#14 Apr 14, 2011
Lakers keep playing to sold out houses and nobody boos Kobe, not even last night in Sacramento. In the crows are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

Why hasn't anybody spoken up? Not one little peep-ian. Hypocrites.
Poor Armenian

Fremont, CA

#15 Apr 16, 2011
We're smelly,rude,ignorant,racist "Armenian w'nkers in Glendale.Nobody like us.Even we don't like ourselves.I'm sorry, Kobe Bryant most of the racist,brainwashed Armenian w'nkers are "mental sick" people here.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#16 Apr 17, 2011
Lakers play to sold out house Sunday afternoon against New Orleans. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#17 May 3, 2011
Lakers play to sold out houses against New Orleans last week and Dallas last night. Kobe gets cheered again, no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

Why hasn't anybody stepped up to reply? How about the big brave trash-talking Armos who are braver than brave when they have 4-5 friends around, and a gun, why don't you speak up at a Laker's game or on the Staples grounds? Not a word or peep comes out.

Since no talk, you are in agreement. Traitors.
Former Armo

Los Angeles, CA

#18 Jul 22, 2011
KOBE BRYANT REPORTEDLY IN TALKS WITH TURKISH CLUB TEAM

http://www.latimes.com/sports/basketball/nba/...

How do you Armos like that?



Kobe Bryant's representatives have had conversations about a deal for him to play for Turkish club team Besiktas this season in Istanbul, Besiktas Coach Ergin Ataman told The Times in a telephone interview Thursday.

Ataman said the team is trying to satisfy Bryant's salary demands so that he can join New Jersey Nets All-Star point guard Deron Williams on the team. Williams signed with Besiktas about a week ago.

"We made our offer to Kobe and now we are waiting for their comments about the situation," Ataman said. "But we didn't talk about details. I think they are thinking now about our offer, and I think in the beginning of August, the first week of August, our president [Yildirim Demiroren] will be in the United States for Deron Williams' press conference and I think that they will meet to sign in USA with Kobe."

Bryant's agent, Rob Pelinka, didn't return repeated phone calls Thursday to speak about the negotiations Ataman talked about.

Ataman said the money to pay Bryant's salary would come from the Besiktas club and a "special sponsor that we are talking with."

Bryant has an endorsement deal with Turkish Airlines.

Unlike NBA teams, European teams put sponsor names on the fronts of the team jerseys for advertisement.

"Yes, we feel Kobe will sign with us," Ataman said. "We feel because Besiktas is a very good club, very famous club. At this moment, after the United States, Turkey is in the best league in Europe. Besiktas has great fans. I think it is positive. So we are very optimistic about Kobe to sign."

Ataman said they view the conversations with Bryant as a "positive situation" because the team had long discussions with Williams before he agreed to a deal that reportedly will play him $5 million overall, about $350,000 per month.

Ataman was asked about the report that Bryant is seeking $1 million a month, double the amount of $500,000 Besiktas reportedly was offering.

"We are negotiating about this," Ataman said. "This amount is very, very big for Europe in this situation. But I think that we find a solution to arrive to be happy and to have a happy Kobe for the money. But the main thing I think will be that Kobe will come here to play basketball with Deron Williams to stay in shape, to take good money and to play basketball.

"The first option is the money. Of course, it is not impossible to take."

Ataman said Bryant, like Williams, will have an opt-out clause to leave Besiktas when the NBA lockout ends.

Bryant would be the biggest star to play in Europe during his prime.

A 13-time All-Star who has won five NBA championships with the Lakers over a 15-year career, Bryant has said he would be interested in playing in Turkey or China if the NBA season doesn't start on time on Nov. 1.

The Turkish League starts in October.

The NBA locked out its players July 1, and no negotiations appear to be on the horizon.

Bryant is touring in China and is scheduled to play a two-game exhibition in the Philippines on Saturday and Sunday.

Bryant, who turns 33 next month, has three years left on his deal with the Lakers for $83.5 million. He is coming off a procedure to treat an arthritic joint in his right knee.

Allen Iverson played for Besiktas last season but didn't finish the season because of injuries.

Besides Williams, Besiktas has signed Atlanta Hawks center Zaza Pachulia.

Since: Sep 10

Santa Monica, CA

#19 Jan 4, 2012
Lakers play to a full house every night since the season started. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are still not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

Since: Sep 10

Beverly Hills, CA

#20 May 20, 2012
Lakers play to a full house all season long. Kobe gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who cheer along with everybody else and apparently are still not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.
Lamar Kardashian

Los Angeles, CA

#21 Nov 20, 2012
It is another Laker season, Kobe still gets all cheers and no boos. Among the crowd are hypocritical Armenians who still cheer along with everybody else and apparently are still not upset with his Turkish Airlines affiliation. Since they cheer for him they must be in agreement with him.

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