NBA 2019 - 2020 and the defending champion Raptors

October 22nd the Raps will kick off the NBA season raising the championship banner in a game against New Orleans - who should be fun to watch this year with rookie phenom Zion Williamson on the team and hopefully some playing time for Canadian rookie Nickeil Alexander-Walker.

The Raps have opened their training camp at Laval in Quebec City and packed the place for a 5 on 5 scrimmage last night.

NBA looking like a fool choosing China over free speech today .

Maybe a good about turn against greed over the right thing to do is warranted by fans .

Don’t buy tickets .

But they didn’t - and as a result it may cost them billions. Adam Silver (the NBA commissioner) who is travelling in Japan with the Raptors - said this

On Monday, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver [url=]waded into the fray[/url]. He reportedly spoke to Kyodo News, a local news outlet in Japan, and expressed his support for Morey "in terms of his ability to exercise his freedom of expression." In a statement the next day, Silver said the NBA could not regulate what "players, employees and team owners" say, and that the league was motivated by "far more than growing our business."

“It is inevitable that people around the world — including from America and China — will have different viewpoints over different issues,” he said in the statement. “It is not the role of the NBA to adjudicate those differences.”
That response has sparked outrage in China.

And now every official NBA Partner in China has suspended their ties with the NBA. FYI - China had more people watch Game 6 of the NBA championship than who watched in the USA - and is already responsible of about 10% of the NBA’s total revenues - with expectation before this tiff that it would grow to close to 30% of total league revenues by 2030.

In the immediate term apparently games being played in China this week will now no longer be televised in China and others in China are pushing for a boycott of the game.

The decisions have immediate implications. The Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets are set to face off in Shanghai on Thursday, followed by a rematch in Shenzhen on Saturday. Many social media users in China have been calling for boycotts of the NBA events, and on Wednesday, a man was seen tearing down a billboard advertising the Lakers and Nets game in Shanghai. The Shanghai Sports Federation canceled an NBA event on Wednesday just hours before players were scheduled to meet with fans. The move came after several Chinese celebrities pulled out of the gathering, and said they would no longer attend the match scheduled on Thursday.

I think you missed what happened after ; that’s what’s so bad . They started out backing the statement with Silver’s statement and now that they see it costing them money they changed their tune .

Silver statement was the beginning but their stance changed and are apologizing to China now . The grovelling to China and the removal of the tweet is wrong .

It’s the apology that is shocking even the most pro NBA fan it’s so bad when the whole tweet was non confrontational and was right .

They shouldn’t even be playing there anyways with what is happening in Hong Kong this is the same league who changed location of it’s all star game over trans washrooms .

Those are not even closely on the same level . Its greed period .

The NBA has never endorsed free speech. They made one of their owners sell his team over a secret recording of him saying something politically incorrect in the privacy of his own living room.

Hank here is the timeline
Friday the tweet
Sunday - the reaction with threats to the NBA from China
Monday - lame response from the NBA for which they justifiably received immediate flack - like yours
Tuesday - NBA reacts to that by saying such things as

the league is motivated by much more than money, and freedom of expression must be protected.
"I do know there are consequences from freedom of speech; we will have to live with those consequences," Silver said. "For those who question our motivation, this is about far more than growing our business," he added.
Wednesday - the outraged reaction in China to the NBA standing up for freedom of expression. That resulted in the 23 Chinese NBA partners suspending ties and the decision to not televise any of the NBA preseason games in China. (600 million watched NBA games last year in China)

And that is where things stand today.

…but let’s be honest, it’s still pretty much about the money…I’m with Randy Marsh on this one…

Free Randy Now .

What a train wreck. I saw this coming when not only Silver but Kerr and Pop and some parrot players dissed the GM.

They throw a GM and fellow American under the bus first, and then they try to play it both ways with an official statement that really was one version in Chinese but another version in English, then they have ESPN gag Stephen A. calling them out under the guise of doing so the entire network, then no one is falling for their crap and now they are paying the price anyway.

You can’t have it both ways NBA. Silver, Pop, Kerr, and other such blowhards ought move to China. The rest of will stay here and ball just fine with or without the NBA.

I’m done with the NBA for such hypocrisy, arrogance, and sanctimony. They can die off with all these so-called woke hipster types with this decade.

May they be called out more and crash and burn for underestimating the intelligence of their average fan and player with such hubris.

Uh, no, he made such statements since the 1970s not just once.

Don’t try to sugar coat or even pretend that’s near the same.

Or perhaps you are really an apologist for open racists now? 'Fess up if so.

Yep I am out. The NBA has no loyalty to my country or its team in Toronto and Canada. Silver has to go now or ship out to China for all I care.

I’m out until he goes, for the awful handling of this matter is on him above all.

Silver lining no pun intended - now the NBA has become political such that folks will forget about Kaepernick and the NFL - for now.

Next year we have another presidential election preceded by a battle for the nomination in the Democratic Party now in progress.

The timing for such a firestorm, much like in the fall of 2016 for the NFL, could not be worse given such ready fuel for such fires.

The lesson for sports leagues is don’t go there unless you want to alienate a lot of money and interest instead of reaching out to everybody. Doing the former is just bad business for any business.

The NBA is no different from every other major corporation that has dealings in China - in that it ends up having to walk a fine line between the core beliefs in their home markets with those very different beliefs of those in control in China.

In fact if anything the Tuesday comments by Silver went much further than most others have been willing to do.

Right now some sportswear companies like Under Armour and Nike who make a ton of money in China - a good chunk of it because of their affiliation with the NBA and its players (some reports that as much as 1/3 of Nike’s revenue comes from China now) - they are trying to disappear into the background and keep themselves as invisible as possible during this dispute. Nike pulled any Houston Rockets stuff from their China stores as have other online companies who do business in China.

They are basically between a rock and a hard place trying to walk a fine line that doesn’t piss off China with such a huge chunk of your company’s business dependent on that market - while at the same time not pissing off the domestic market with the steps you take to try to avoid pissing off China.

Don’t be so dramatic.

Either the NBA supports free speech or it doesn’t.

Their track record suggests strongly that it doesn’t.

Oh we all know what they like other businesses are trying to do. It’s when they are hypocrites like this when they have to be called out. Or they could just do business, make money, and avoid the politics and sanctimony like those other business.

You dip your toe into heavy politics, you die by them as a business because you will alienate a substantial portion of your customer base.

Agreed - I simply found your attempt at comparison with that matter of Donald Sterling to be rather blase` and inaccurate. It was a poor example to make your point, for overt racism is a matter of which it is of also interest to a business to take a stand irrespective of the politics of those matters.

It was not apparently that way in the 1970s for even the supposedly more progressive NBA as compared to the other major sports leagues in North America besides the CFL, and of course their hand was not forced until someone finally had the cojones to expose that racist, but the right decision was made at least four decades too late.

Hypocrites is right .

They like to tell others how woke they are but when people just want what we have here with freedom it’s not worth a simple word of encouragement because it might bug a system of government that does not value freedom .

I didn’t bring it up because I thought that he made a good point. I brought it up as an example of the NBA punishing someone for something that they said.

Just make it NBA China already. Good luck with that. You’ll be the next Hong Kong after less than 20 years.

Some like me saw this coming upon turnover back on 1 July 1997.

The NBA won’t change until Adam Silver, scion of the wily and inept David Stern in his last decade, goes for good. Get on with it. Throw him under the bus and back over at least twice, and then the NBA can move on.