China requested firing of Daryl Morey, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said ‘no chance’
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver says the Chinese government requested the NBA to fire Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey after his tweet about China.
Silver and the NBA said no.
“We made clear that we were being asked to fire him, by the Chinese government, by the parties we dealt with, government and businesses,” Silver said, via Robin Roberts of ABC. “We said there’s no chance that’s happening. There’s no chance we’ll even discipline him.”
Morey voiced support on Twitter for pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong. As a result, the NBA’s relationship with China is as tense as its ever been.
Marc Stein of The New York Times reported the Rockets could lose $25 million this season due to sponsorship boycotts in China. Silver said last week the NBA has already had a substantial economic impact from Morey’s tweet.
As of February of 2018, NBA China was valued at more than $4 billion — or $133 million in value for each of the 30 teams, according to Mike Ozanian of Forbes. This whole situation keeps escalating. At this point, Morey probably wishes he didn’t send that tweet.
Players could potentially lose salary and endorsements deals as a result of a decline in revenue from China.