Israeli NBA player Omri Casspi joins the list of Israeli celebrities publicly displaying their ties to Judaism and Jewish practice.
Casspi posted a picture to his Instagram account in which he is seen wearing Tefilin and a Tallit (prayer shawl), and praying in the morning sunlight.
In the caption to the photo Casspi told of a recent meeting with Rabbi Yakov Ades, a well known Torah scholar from Jerusalem.
"In the past few days I had the privilege of meeting Rabbi Yakov Ades, a righteous and pure man," Casspi wrote, "we spoke of the merits of Tefillin, Shabbat, Kashrut, modesty, Jewish values and ethics and more. I learned so much from this man, who prays for the whole Jewish people and never has a bad word to say."
"When I asked the Rabbi how he manages to stay humble despite his vast knowledge of Torah, he said that he reminds himself how great his teachers were, and told me how much more there is to learn."
The Sacramento Kings forward ended on a note of gratitude. "I thank God everyday for what I have and don't have, and certainly for the privilege of meeting such remarkable people."
Casspi became the first ever Israeli NBA player in 2009, when he was drafted by the Kings. He later went on to stints with the Cleveland Cavaliers and Houston Rockets before returning to Sacramento, where he had his best season last year, averaging 11.8 points per game and holding a spot in the starting lineup for much of the year.