The NBA's poisoned China chalice
The NBA has fallen into the whirlpool of hurt Chinese feelings, global discourse control, separatism and the risks from and to free speech to and from any business with PRC interests.
Daryl Morey, General Manager of the Houston Rockets, the team that brought Yao Ming to the NBA and one that is wildly popular in China, tweeted his support for the Hong Kong protests. Then the gates of commercial hell opened for him, the Rockets and the NBA.
The NBA issued different statements in English here and in Chinese on Weibo, with the Chinese one much heavier on the pandering. Then Joe Tsai, Executive Vice-Chairman of Alibaba and owner of the Brooklyn Nets, issued a statement:
As a Governor of one of the 30 NBA teams, and a Chinese having spent a good part of my professional life in China, I need to speak up.
What is the problem with people freely expressing their opinion? This freedom is an inherent American value and the NBA has been very progressive in allowing players and other constituents a p…