Basketball is a contact sport and things often get heated between players. In a recent incident during a Eurobasket tournament in 2022, Georgian and Turkish players went into an altercation that turned ugly behind the scene.
Furkan Korkmaz had an intense moment during the game with Georgia guard Duda Sanadze. The heated exchange was too much on the field which led to the ejection of both players. However, it wasn’t the end of it, the 76ers forward and Turkish national team player was on his way to his locker room when he got ambushed by three Georgian players including Sanadze. Punches flew heavily between all of them which later was confirmed by Turkish vice president Omar Onan.
Korkmaz shared the incident on the media later on, “When I was walking to the tunnel, our conditioning guy was with me. As soon as we walked out of the tunnel and were trying to reach the locker room, I saw three Georgian players alongside two security guys running at us. We started throwing punches at each other. That’s basically what happened.”
Omar Onan also shared thoughts on the incident and confirmed that Frukan was attacked by Georgian players including two who were not on the active roster. The other two Georgian players were Tornike Shengelia and Goga Bitadze who play for the Pacers.
Frukan Korkmaz continued, “It was like a street fight. There was no talk or conversation. People just came at us and were trying to attack us. Of course, we reacted and tried to defend ourselves—exactly what we are going to do as men. I also think it’s a security problem. But I don’t know if it’s a security problem or if they just showed tolerance to their players.
“We understand that they’re at home, but this is unacceptable. What happens on the court is fine, but we should talk more about what happens off the court.”
Things are taking the turn for the worse as Turkey is now threatening to leave the tournament if the security footage of the off-court incident is not shared. Moreover, Turkey also raised the issue of the clock ruling were 22 seconds vanished due to on-court exchange.
FIBA Jumps In
Now, FIBA has decided to get involved in the matter, “Regarding the allegations from both federations in relation to actions in the team areas of the venue, involving players and delegation members from both teams, an investigation is currently ongoing,” the FIBA statement reads. “Once the investigation is concluded, the competent FIBA bodies will decide on any applicable disciplinary measures.”