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NBA Chief Adam Silver Stands Firm as China Backlash Mounts


Tokyo (AFP) - The National Basketball Association won't gag its personnel or apologise over a team executive's tweet that ignited a firestorm in China, commissioner Adam Silver insisted Tuesday, standing firm despite a growing backlash that imperils the league's lucrative Chinese following. The tweet last Friday by Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey supporting pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong has infuriated Chinese fans and led to broadcasters and sponsors severing ties with the NBA. But Silver, speaking at a press conference in Japan where the Rockets are playing exhibition games this week, said the world's top basketball league would continue to "support freedom of expression and certainly freedom of expression of the NBA community." "The NBA will not put itself in a position of regulating what players, employees and team owners say or will not say on these issues. We simply could not operate that way," Silver said in a statement before the press conference. Source

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