NBA calls off media sessions for Nets, Lakers players in China amid fallout from tweet

The NBA has canceled scheduled media sessions Wednesday for the Brooklyn Nets and Los Angeles Lakers game in China amid fallout from a tweet from the Houston Rockets general manager.

The teams are scheduled to play Saturday in Shenzhen, but two NBA events have already been canceled in Shanghai because of the aftermath of Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey’s tweet in support of Hong Kong, The Associated Press reported.

“Given the fluidity of the situation, today’s media availability has been postponed,” the league told the AP.

As of Wednesday night in China, the media sessions had not been rescheduled. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver met with players from both teams saying the association is still planning on the weekend game, the news wire reported. 

Chinese businesses have lashed out at the NBA after Morey’s since-deleted tweet, suspending their business with the association. The Chinese state broadcaster CCTV announced it will not air the Saturday game.

“I’m sympathetic to our interests here and to our partners who are upset,” Silver said to the AP. “I don’t think it’s inconsistent on one hand to be sympathetic to them and at the same time stand by our principles.”

Morey’s tweet, which said, “Fight for freedom. Stand with Hong Kong,” prompted the NBA to release an apology that sparked backlash in the U.S.

A Rockets fan was arrested in China after reportedly threatening to burn a flag. Another NBA fan said he was ejected from a game after voicing support for the pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong.

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