Former Florida center Joakim Noah received permission from the New York Knicks, his new team, to not attend their annual dinner with cadets at U.S. Military Academy at West Point.
According to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News, Noah, a pacifist, said he did not feel comfortable with his surroundings at the dinner. Noah was the only Knicks player not to attend, but it was not an issue with coach Jeff Hornacek.
“I wasn’t there to be honest with you. It’s hard for me a little bit. I have a lot of respect for the kids who are out here fighting. But it’s hard for me to understand why we have to go to war, why kids have to kill kids around the world,” Noah told Bondy. “So I have mixed feelings about being here. I’m very proud of this country. I love America but I just don’t understand kids killing kids around the world.”
The Knicks are holding training camp at West Point for the third straight year.
Noah signed a four-year, $72-million contract with New York in the offseason after playing for the Chicago Bulls since he was drafted in 2007.