The Nets are scheduled to play back-to-back games against the Los Angeles Lakers in Shanghai on Thursday, and on Saturday in Shenzhen as part of the NBA Global Games, a series of games featuring NBA teams played outside the United States and Canada.
More details as it becomes available.
The controversy took shape on Sunday (Oct. 6) after Houston Rockets manager Daryl Morey published, and promptly deleted, a tweet that showed support for the public protests in Hong Kong.
In an editorial, the state-run China Daily accused the National Basketball Association of a U-turn and said Silver's remarks showed the league's earlier "honey-mouthed" statements had been "nothing but an attempt to prevent the hemorrhaging of profits made in China".
As a result of Morey's statements, the Rockets were rebuked by the Chinese Basketball Association whose president is Yao Ming, a former Rocket himself. The Communist Party's official newspaper, People's Daily, wrote that Morey's comments were "hurtful to Chinese basketball fans and is also an affront to the Chinese people".
Hong Kong has seen four months of protests and increasing violence between demonstrators and police, originally sparked by a proposal that would have allowed extradition from the semiautonomous territory to mainland China.
Although Rockets general manager Daryl Morey quickly deleted the tweet, sportswear brand Li-Ning and sponsor Shanghai Pudong Development Bank (SPD Bank) Credit Card Center said on Sunday they were suspending cooperation with it.
Already, a Chinese state-run television network has suspended its broadcasting arrangement for the preseason, as Arjun Kharpal of CNBC broke down, and its unclear if similar measure will continue into the regular season.
Taipei-born Joe Tsai (蔡崇信), owner of the Brooklyn Nets and cofounder of Alibaba Group Holding, said freedom of expression does not extend to issues China deems untouchable, and the damage from Morey's tweet "will take a long time to fix". Tencent Holdings represents the NBA's largest digital partner outside the U.S. and struck a deal to stream games and other league programming in China reported to be worth $1.5 billion.
The NBA statement originally made in English had a different twist when it came out in Chinese. "But if that's the outcome of us adhering to our values, we still feel it's critically important to adhere to those values".
Morey said that he acknowledges the "significant support our Chinese fans and sponsors have provided". China appears extremely sensitive to outside parties encouraging the demonstrators, especially within a group they have strong ties to.
But after Mr Morey's tweet, even the Chinese government's consulate office in Houston issued a statement saying it "expressed strong dissatisfaction" with the team.
Obviously, this has not sat well with China, which expressed its discontent with Silver for supporting Morey.
He says "this is about far more than growing our business".