LeBron James has finally weighed in on the NBA’s controversy with China.
James, who is at the forefront of the athlete empowerment movement, said on Monday that Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey was not “educated” about the Hong Kong matter before speaking. James also noted there were financial, physical, emotional and spiritual consequences to Morey’s tweet.
The NBA has since been working to fix the relationship with a major market across the Pacific.
“They wanted to stand up for his freedom of expression, but they also wanted to make it clear that they had respect for China’s history and its government. Essentially, they didn’t want to anger a very important business partner,” Golliver said.
The NBA’s relationship with China goes back decades. It’s a huge source of revenue for the league, and it’s worth billions in merchandise sales, media rights, streaming and more. More people watch the NBA finals in China than in the United States.