Is the Knicks’ Amar’e Stoudemire Jewish?


NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire is in Israel on a spiritual quest. In a TV interview with an Israeli sports network, Stoudemire sports a large white yarmulke, speaks a few words of Hebrew, and conditionally commits to fasting on Yom Kippur and avoiding chametz on Pesach.

In the interview, Yaron Talpaz asks, "So I mean, is there a chance you’re Jewish, somehow?"

"I think through history, I think we all are," Stoudemire responds.

Stoudemire’s also a devout Christian, or at least he has been until now. He testified to the influence of Jesus in his life on an Evangelical sports blog run by former NFL coach Tony Dungy.

The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times offer more details on Stoudemire’s spiritual journey — and journey to Israel.

Last August, JTA’s Fundermentalist had the scoop when Knicks front office man and former NBA player Allan Houston planted a tree in Israel with JNF.

Check out Stoudemire’s Twitter feed, which is filled with Hebrew expressions and news of his visits to tourist attractions in Israel, which gives the Israeli Tourism Ministry cause for kvelling.

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