Why did LeBron Feel Compelled to Slam Daryl Morey?
LeBron James by most accounts is not a stupid person. To accumulate the wealth and variety of businesses he's now involved in he has to have at least some shred of common sense.
I always respected that part about him even if his NBA career and playing for multiple teams has labeled him in my book as a bit of a mercenary.
Which is why the comments James made this week regarding the NBA's Big Trouble in Little China problem all the more perplexing....
To his credit, he steered largely clear about the fallout from one relatively innocuous tweet by Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey which set off the Chinese Government and forced the NBA to go into severe damage mode on the risk of losing their multi-billion dollars of business dealings with the Chinese.
It was the strange and totally false comment he made about Morey which is raising eyebrows....pretty much everywhere.
First and foremost---James has no business questioning Daryl Morey's knowledge of, well, pretty much anything. For What it is Worth--Morey has an MBA from MIT and a degree from Northwestern in Computer Science.
He is however right, indirectly, regarding the idea of thinking before you Tweet. It's something that drives me insane when I see some of the things people put on Social Media these days not realizing the implications of what they are doing.
Could Morey have foreseen the Chinese Government flipping out and losing their collective minds over his support for the people of Hong Kong? Probably not. Still, in the world we currently live---we ALL have to be very aware there is a good chance of someone freaking out over a 200 character statement and twisting it into something it may---or may not be.
LeBron did eventually dial back his criticism of Morey....
And since the Lakers were one of the teams barnstorming during their preseason in China when this all went down---it did have an impact:
Listen, I'm not defending either person here. They both aren't wrong---but LeBron probably needed to not say what he did either. The timing was not good and will keep the controversy in the headlines after it had begun to fade.
The NBA has a problem and whether Daryl Morey tweeted something about Hong Kong or not, someone eventually would trigger this kind of reaction from China over something. The NBA is freaking out not because of the political implications---their panic is strictly money related. Billions of dollars are at stake.
Does all of this come across as a super-hyper overreaction? Yes. Morey obviously does not speak for anyone other than himself. It's not like he made some sort of veiled threat to anyone or called for China to be nuked or anything of the sort. The fact one two sentence tweet may cost the NBA billions of dollars is mind-boggling. The bigger fact the league and unfortunately several others involved with the league feel compelled to cow-tow to China over their extreme overreaction....is sad.
But then again, it's the world we currently live in.......