The day Hedo Turkoglu showed up in Toronto in 2009 he was nearly seven feet of oatmeal, in shorts. His arms were elongated noodles, his legs long sacks of cement. He was supposed to be part of a winning push to keep pending free agent Chris Bosh, but Bosh was shaking his head from the beginning. Turkoglu is best remembered in Toronto for being in a pizza commercial, and a post-game interview after a rare quality game in which all he would say, to every question, was “Ball.”
It was not a great performance, all in all. And other than his uniform, not much has changed.
Tuesday, in the midst of the worst season of his career, it was revealed Turkoglu has been enhancing whatever performance he was giving. The Orlando Magic forward was suspended 20 games for testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug called methenolone, primarily a fat-cutting agent. Methenolone is what disqualified Belarus shot-putter Nadzeya Ostapchuk at the London Olympics after she won gold. Alex Rodriguez got busted for it in 2003, too. If you lined all three of them up, you would see three very different body types — a baseball Adonis, a shot-putting human boulder, and 6-feet, 10 inches of laconic Turkish noodle soup.
And that's a lesson.