The biggest story during the NBA preseason was Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey’s tweet that supported the anti-government protesters in Hong Kong. However, his support of the Hong Kong protest showed how oblivious he is to the actual situation in Hong Kong and how oblivious he is to the amount of revenue the NBA receives from China.
After this tweet, the Chinese TV channel CCTV and the Chinese streaming network Tencent removed all Houston Rockets games for the entire season. This move was very strong from China because China’s most popular NBA team by far is the Houston Rockets due to retired center Yao Ming playing his entire NBA career in Houston. Also, the NBA lost almost half of their endorsements in China. To show you how dimwitted Daryl Morey is in this situation, here’s some background about Hong Kong.
Over 100 years ago, Great Britain defeated China in war. As a result, China and Great Britain signed a treaty in 1898 that placed Hong Kong under British rule for 99 years. In 1997, Hong Kong was given back to China. Even though China now rules Hong Kong, many of the rights of people in Hong Kong have not been restricted like in mainland China because Hong Kong is one of the largest markets in the entire world.
Over the past 22 years, the Chinese government has attempted to impose their rule little by little over Hong Kong behind the scenes, but China has never succeeded in forcing the people living in Hong Kong to be subjected to all of the rules placed upon the citizens in mainland China because the people of Hong Kong do not want to give up their freedoms.
Over this past summer, China attempted to overtly take away the rights of people in Hong Kong by looking to pass an extradition bill. The bill would allow for the Chinese government to extradite any fugitives captured from Hong Kong to China. However, the people of Hong Kong protested and China pulled the bill over the summer. Instead of the protesters celebrating their victory of maintaining their freedom, the protesters continued to protest even though there was no longer a need to protest. They are still currently protesting.
That’s the key issue in the situation. Both sides are now wrong in this issue. The Chinese government is wrong for breaching the freedoms of the people in Hong Kong. The people of Hong Kong are wrong for continuing to protest even though there is no longer an issue to protest about.
Since Daryl Morey did not know the historical background about the protests in Hong Kong, he did not realize that he was going to be wrong if he took a side. He took the side of protesters, who should no longer be protesting because they achieved their goal of preventing the extradition bill from becoming a law. As a result, the NBA could lose billions of dollars. The deal with Tencent is $1.5 billion. NBA players have lost endorsements worth millions of dollars. To make up for the losses, the NBA could be lowering the salary cap between 11 and 17 million dollars for each team. Multiply that dollar amount by the 30 teams in the NBA puts the loss between 330 and 540 million dollars in revenue for this season alone. For this unnecessary gaffe, Daryl Morey should be fired as GM of the Rockets. Regular people could steal $100 and be fired from their job; Daryl Morey has to go.