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Friday, July 10, 2020

Video shows Rockets artwork being painted over at basketball court in China

Daryl Morey

The fallout from the controversy that was sparked by Daryl Morey’s tweet about the protests in Hong Kong has been far-reaching, and several fans and entities in China have been distancing themselves from the Houston Rockets.

China’s state-run CCTV and Tencent, the NBA’s exclusive digital partner in China, have suspended broadcasting and streaming for the two preseason games that are being held in the country. We’ve also seen some smaller-scale distancing from the NBA and the Rockets, such as this video showing Rockets logos and murals of Houston players being painted over at an indoor gym in Shanghai:

The vast majority of the media in China is controlled by the government, which is why Brooks Melchior of SportsbyBrooks.com notes that the video may have been propaganda. Still, it shows how angry the people of China are over the situation.

The protests Morey showed support for have been taking place in opposition to an extradition bill that has many in the Hong Kong area concerned about their political autonomy and influence from the Chinese government. Some of the demonstrations have turned violent, which is why Chinese officials and many people in China are angry Morey supported them. Other are angry that the NBA has tried to distance itself from Morey when he was arguing in favor of democracy.

The NBA has issued multiple statements addressing the situation, with commissioner Adam Silver reiterating on Tuesday that the league supports Morey’s right to freedom of speech but regrets that so many were angered by his tweet.

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