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CCTV, Tencent won’t broadcast Lakers vs. Nets preseason games in China as a response to statement from NBA, Adam Silver

The Lakers and Nets have arrived in China, but their games are currently slated not to be broadcast in the country in the wake of Adam Silver releasing a statement supporting Daryl Morey — and any other NBA employees — and their rights to express themselves on issues.

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2019 NBA Global Games - Los Angeles Lakers Arrival in China Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

On the west coast of the United States, nearly everyone was asleep on Monday night as NBA Commissioner Adam Silver and the league released a statement in response to the recent international firestorm launched by Houston Rockets executive Daryl Morey tweeting (and quickly deleting) a message of support for protestors currently demonstrating in Hong Kong.

The NBA’s initial statement was fairly milquetoast, calling for unity, saying the outrage in China over Morey’s tweet “regrettable” and that his viewpoint “did not represent the views of the Rockets or NBA.” It clarified that Morey had the right to express himself, but hardly seemed to be supporting him for doing so, trying to please everyone and as result satisfying no one.

Early Monday morning, Silver attempted to clarify the league’s views in both the aforementioned statement, and at a press conference with the media who traveled to China to cover the Los Angeles Lakers’ and Brooklyn Nets’ two preseason games in the country:

And as is mentioned in the second tweet above, Silver’s statement shown in the first tweet caused CCTV to cancel its planned broadcast of the Lakers-Nets game. Tencent — which already had announced it would cancel broadcasts of all Rockets games as a response to Morey’s tweet — also will not broadcast Lakers-Nets in the country:

For now, the Lakes and Nets are still slated to play two games in China, one at the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai on Thursday, and one on Saturday in the Shenzhen Dayun Arena in Shenzhen. Both games are slated to be played at 4:30 a.m. PST.

But with this rapidly developing into quite a standoff between the NBA and a foreign government, at this point it wouldn’t be surprising to ultimately see the Lakers and Nets games cancelled entirely, especially if the entire country they’re being played for won’t even be broadcasting them.

Stay tuned to Silver Screen and Roll for updates as we get them.

For more Lakers talk, subscribe to the Silver Screen and Roll podcast feed on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Podcasts. You can follow Harrison on Twitter at @hmfaigen.

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