China denies that it demanded firing of Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey

Ross Houston
October 19, 2019

Silver said the league stood up for Morey's right to free speech by making it clear to the Chinese government that he would not be penalized. "I have regret that much of that was lost, and I'm not even sure where we'll go from here".

You can watch Silver's interview in the video below (the comments about Morey begin around the 1:30 mark).

The NBA has already suffered "substantial" losses as Chinese businesses distance themselves from the league, Silver said.

"I don't know whose notes, or who is in there that you can't really depend on to keep a conversation like that in house - especially when it is about the National Basketball Association brand and the National Basketball Association players being impacted by it", he said.

"The financial consequences have been, and may continue to be, fairly dramatic", Adam Silver said.

In a recent interview during the TIME 100 Health Summit, Silver spoke about the China situation and even admitted how the country wanted to see Morey fired.

But now that we think about it, maybe James is correct.

A similar episode took place when Blitzchung, a Hong Kong-based professional gamer, shouted "Stand with Hong Kong" in live broadcast after winning an esport tournament.

During a March interview, Silver said "we are living in a time of anxiety" and that "a lot of players are unhappy", thanks largely to social media and the proliferation of personalized technology.

In a video on October 16, PewDiePie, whose real name is Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, took aim at the National Basketball Association (NBA) and USA video game company Blizzard Entertainment for putting profits over free speech in their handling of the Hong Kong issue.

The statement comes days after Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey tweeted his support for the protests that have been taking place in Hong Kong for over four months.

Silver drew criticism for the NBA's initial reaction to Morey's tweet.

Silver also addressed how social media can make matters more hard for those who engage.

The NBA is hugely popular in China with around 800 million fans supporting millions of dollars of business.

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James, who participated in the NBA's trip to China, criticized Morey for failing to consider the "ramifications" of his tweet, including the potential financial cost.

Seconds later, the meat-loving Eric said that students trying to change his lunch "don't realise it harms people financially, physically, emotionally, and spiritually".

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