NBA, China Feud Over Houston Rockets Official's Controversial Tweet

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NBA commissioner Adam Silver has said that Chinese govt to remove Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey over a tweet in support of pro-democracy protesters in HK.

Written By Suraj Alva | Mumbai | Updated On:

The relationship between one of the biggest sporting leagues in the world, the NBA and China seems to be rapidly deteriorating by the day. In an interview with a leading media portal, NBA commissioner Adam Silver claims that he was pushed a lot by the Chinese government to fire Houston Rockets' General Manager Daryl Morey following a recent tweet of his, which was in support of pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong. However, Silver added that there is no chance that he will succumb to Chinese demands as no strict action will be taken against Morey.

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Houston Rockets China tweet 

Daryl Morey, the general manager of the Houston Rockets, set off an international firestorm with a Twitter post using a slogan used by the protesters in Hong Kong, just as the league was preparing to stage games in Shanghai and Shenzhen between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets. Morey later deleted the post.

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NBA China issue: How bad are things currently? 

Speaking at the Time 100 Health Summit during an interview with the network anchor Robin Roberts, Silver said that the games are not back on air in China. Several companies in the country denounced Morey and cut ties with the Rockets, which is one of the most popular teams in the country. The Chinese government cancelled a number of events and in turn, the NBA shut down media access to its players, which extended to a game last Saturday in Shenzhen.

Also Read: LeBron James: NBA Vs China Heats Up, As James Distances Himself

NBA China issue: League comes under fire at home 

After backlash from China, the league has also come under fire at home for its initial written response that said it was “regrettable” that Morey’s tweet “deeply offended many of our friends and fans in China.” American politicians and many fans accused the NBA of bowing to China’s government to preserve profits.

Also Read: NBA-China Tweet To Affect Clippers Vs Mavericks Pre-season Match

NBA China issue: Le Bron James faces severe criticism

Los Angeles Lakers star Le Bron James received a lot of flak for his comment stating that the Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey was misinformed for tweeting in support for the freedom of Hong Kong. Some protesters in Hong Kong burned jerseys and turned images of the superstar into memes. He has since distanced himself from the issue stating he'd rather like to focus on the game and the upcoming season. 

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