President Donald Trump torpedoed NBA coaches Steve Kerr (of the Golden State Warriors) and Gregg Popovich (San Antonio Spurs) for cowering in the face of China’s censorship and bullying of NBA officials and fans.
Both Kerr and Popovich have repeatedly slammed President Trump as authoritarian. Meanwhile, they refuse to condemn China — an actual authoritarian regime.
Why? Because China has threatened to pull NBA sponsorships if anyone in the league supports the Hong Kong activists, who are protesting China’s brutal communist autocracy.
Trump mocked Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr, saying he acted like a scared “little boy” when asked if the Chinese were wrong to attack the NBA after Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted support for the protesters in Hong Kong.
“I watched this guy, Steve Kerr, he was so scared,” Trump said. “He was like a little boy, he was so scared. He was shaking. And yet he’ll talk about the United States very badly.”
President Trump also slammed San Antonio Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, a virulent Trump-hater who has called Trump a soulless coward.
“I watched the way that Kerr and Popovich and some of the others were pandering to China, and yet to our own country, they don’t respect it,” Trump said.
President Trump was referencing a bizarre interview with Steve Kerr — who normally trashes Trump’s pro-America policies — where he timidly refused to criticize China’s brutal communist regime.
“It’s something I’m reading about, just like everybody is but I’m not going to comment further than that,” Kerr said.
Steve Kerr has no comment on NBA’s China issues. He comments on every Trump tweet and can’t support democracy in China? What a complete and total coward. pic.twitter.com/Fr4FJIaOW0
— Clay Travis (@ClayTravis) October 8, 2019
The brouhaha erupted last week when Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey tweeted: “Fight For Freedom. Stand With Hong Kong.”
The Chinese government was enraged by the innocuous tweet, so Chinese businesses began pulling their NBA sponsorships.
In addition, Chinese broadcasters and streaming platforms threatened to stop airing NBA games.
In response, the NBA quickly issued a groveling apology to China, saying the league was “extremely disappointed” by Morey’s “regrettable” statement that “severely hurt the feelings of Chinese fans.”
Naturally, Daryl Morey was forced to delete his tweet. Moreover, two of his top players on the Houston Rockets — James Harden and Russell Westbrook — also publicly apologized, saying “We love China!”
This week, an NBA fan was ejected from an exhibition game between the Philadelphia 76ers and China’s Guangzhou Loong Lions. Why? Because he yelled “Free Hong Kong” during the game.
— Christie Ileto (@Christie_Ileto) October 9, 2019
Check out this Trump-hater — Golden States Warriors star Steph Curry — cowering in the face of China’s censorship of the NBA:
Trump-hating LeBron James is also curiously silent about China’s oppression of his NBA pals.
LeBron James called NBA exec Daryl Morey "uneducated" for supporting the Hong Kong activists, who are protesting China's censorship & oppressive communist regime.
Twitter is banned in China, so it’s unlikely that most ppl in China saw Morey’s tweet.https://t.co/8RGIiSIAEX
— Samantha Chang (@samantha_chang) October 15, 2019
China pounced on the NBA’s cowardly submission with a blistering smackdown in China Daily:
“Let’s hope the incident with Morey and the Houston Rockets will teach other companies a lesson. The big Chinese market is open to the world, but those who challenge China’s core interests and hurt Chinese people’s feelings cannot make any profit from it.”
Republican Senator Marco Rubio warned that “China is using access to market as leverage to crush free speech globally. Implications of this will be felt long after everyone in U.S. politics today is gone.”
Recognize what’s happening here. People who don’t live in #China must either self censor or face dismissal & suspensions. China using access to market as leverage to crush free speech globally. Implications of this will be felt long after everyone in U.S. politics today is gone. https://t.co/Cx3tkWc7r6
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) October 8, 2019
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