Fenerbahce Ulker has announced that they will be playing the Oklahoma City Thunder on October 9th. The game will take place in Chesapeake Energy Arena.
During the 2013 pre-season, the Thunder traveled to Istanbul, Turkey to play Fenerbahce. At the time, the Thunder had Thabo Sefolosha. Fenerbahce was where Sefolosha played 7 games during the 2011 lockout. So that game was a bit of a homecoming for Sefolosha, and the crowd responded to him well. The Thunder easily won that game, 95-82.
The 2016 Thunder-Fenerbahce clash will be a bit of a flashback for Enes Kanter. Kanter played for various levels of Fenerbahce's teams from 2006-2009. Interestingly, Kanter didn't leave Fenerbahce on the best of terms. Back in 2010, Kanter decided to depart Istanbul and enroll at the University of Kentucky. Before Kanter could enroll though, he was ruled ineligible by the NCAA. Allegedly, Kanter received benefits from Fenerbahce that violated his amateur status.
In 2011, Enes Kanter stated that he believed Fenerbahce to be responsible for his NCAA ineligiblity. In a 2010 interview, Kanter's father, Mehmet, stated that Fenerbahce was trying to 'make an example' out of Enes.
Fenerbahce Ulker achieved fourth place in the Euroleague last year. However, the roster is getting a complete makeover. Aside from 6 Turkish players that are coming off the bench, all of Fenerbahce's players are new. Acquisitions include recently departed NBA players Pero Antic, Luigi Datome, and Ekpe Udoh. Interestingly enough, Ekpe Udoh grew up in Edmond, Oklahoma. That's only 20 minutes away from Chesapeake Energy Arena.
There ate two other known matchups in the Thunder's pre-season schedule thus far. On October 13th, the Thunder will play the Mavericks in Tulsa. On October 20th, the Thunder will play at the Utah Jazz.