As most of you know, New York Knicks star Amare Stoudemire is vacationing in Israel. Eveyone in the sports world and everywhere else was wondering if he is actually Jewish or not, so he cleared up what he is doing on his Twitter page and I quote ‘I’m studying history & want 2 learn about all religions. I think I might have some Hebrew Roots & i’m researching it.’ He has also been tweeting about his whole trip with Hebrew words like ‘Boker Tov,’ good morning, and ‘Lechayim,’ to life.
This week, he was interviewed by the Israeli sports news station Sport5 and was asked about what he has been doing and what he plans on doing with his new heritage and religion. He is very confident that he can observe Judaism without it affecting him on the court and he is even wearing a Yarmulke (traditional head covering), but many people will say that he can not hold to it or it will take his focus away from the game.
After watching the interview, I will go on to explain what all of his commitments to the religion will do to his game and if it is possible for him to keep it up.
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Now that we know what Amare plans to do with his new heritage, we can look at the affects it will have on his life and game. All he needs now is a Bar Mitzvah!
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The first thing he said was that he will observe the Sabbath or ‘Shabbat,’ as it is called in Hebrew. One of the main laws of the Sabbath is to refrain from using electricity from Friday night at sundown until sundown on Saturday night. To all of Amare’s Twitter followers, don’t bother looking for new tweets between those times. But seriously, do you think he can actually do this?
What is he getting himself into?
This means he cannot even turn on a light or the television or even call his agent. Honestly I do not think this will happen. Maybe he will do it for a day and then realize that it is not possible. Also, another custom on the Sabbath is to go to Synagogue on Saturday mornings. While there are definitely a lot of Synagogues to choose from in the city, I highely doubt this will happen. Amare will have to sacrifice hanging with friends or practicing for a game that day, which is not a good idea.
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Amare’s other commitment was that he will celebrate the the holiday Yom Kippur</str