The NBA's relationship with China is getting dicier by the day, as more and more Chinese businesses are cutting ties with the league after Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey tweeted a picture in support of the ongoing protests in Hong Kong. In support of Morey, and perhaps American free speech, a Philadelphia 76ers fan, later identified a Sam Wachs, sported a "Free Hong Kong" sign during the Sixers' preseason game against the Guangzhou Long Lions (who are from China).
The 76ers released a statement in support of Wells Fargo Center security, who removed Wachs and another fan holding the same sign from the premises after they were warned several times about verbally confronting other fans.
While Wachs was not seen on video verbally berating anyone else, one can only assume this happened because of the NBA losing business deals with China over Morey's tweet. Of course the 76ers wouldn't have said they removed the fans because of their stance on China. Another legitimate reason needed to be presented.
Of course that's not at all confirmed to be the case, but the 76ers' statement was weak and it came much too late, which led many to believe otherwise.
All in all, this is a terrible look for the NBA and the other teams that have had to get involved. Everyone had the chance to take a stance on the matter, but instead it's clear this is all about the money given the lack of powerful responses.