If New York Knicks F Amare Stoudeire is suddenly persona non grata at meetings of Austin’s Tin Foil Hat Club, so be it. The New York Daily News’ Corky Siemaszko reports Stat has applied for Israeli citizenship.
Stoudemire, 30, put in the paperwork while he was in the Jewish state for the annual Maccabiah Games, where he served as the assistant coach of the Canadian basketball squad.
Those ended earlier this week, but Stoudemire has more than religious reasons for forging closer ties with Israel. In July, Stoudemire announced he had become a part owner in the Israeli basketball club Hapoel Jerusalem.
Stoudemire, who was signed by the Knicks in 2010 to a nearly $100 million five-year contract, wasn’t raised Jewish, but he’s been flirting with the religion ever since he moved to New York and began telling people his wayward mother, Carrie, had Jewish ties. In interviews, Stoudemire has stated that he has “no formal religion,” although he practices certain Jewish rituals because “we are all Jewish. It’s the original culture.”