According to the New York Times, the boycott from China could cost the Houston Rockets $25 million this year.
The infamous tweet from Rockets GM Daryl Morey rocked China and rubbed its leaders the wrong way.
China reportedly pulled sponsorship money from the Rockets, banned any media coverage of the team, and ended cooperation between the Chinese Basketball Association.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver apologized to China, calling Morey’s statement “regrettable” and noting that it “deeply offended many of our friends and fans in China.”
“There is no doubt, the economic impact is already clear. There have already been fairly dramatic consequences from that tweet, and I have read some of the media suggesting that we are not supporting Daryl Morey, but, in fact, we have.
I think as a values-based organization that I want to make it clear … Daryl Morey is supported in terms of his ability to exercise his freedom of expression. The fact we have apologized to fans in China is not inconsistent with supporting someone’s right to have a point of view.”
Losing support from China would cost a chunk out of the NBA’s pockets.
China has over 500 million NBA fans, and the league rakes in over $500 million in revenue yearly.