In his first comments since the Los Angeles Lakers returned from playing two exhibition games in China, the four-time MVP told reporters at Staples Center that Morey was “misinformed or not really educated” when he posted a graphic on Oct. 4 that read “Fight for Freedom. Stand with Hong Kong.” The tweet was met with immediate anger from Chinese authorities, which deepened when both Morey and the NBA refused to issue a formal apology.
“I don’t want to get into a … feud with Daryl Morey, but I believe he wasn’t educated on the situation at hand and he spoke,” James said before the Lakers hosted the Golden State Warriors for a preseason game. “So many people could have been harmed, not only financially but physically, emotionally, spiritually. Just be careful what we tweet, what we say and what we do. Yes, we have freedom of speech, but there can be a lot of negatives that come with that as well. … Sometimes social media is not always the proper way to go about things as well.”
James, who has been an advocate of professional athletes expressing their political opinions, said he personally did not feel sufficiently informed about the Hong Kong protests to discuss them in detail last week. He added that the situation in China was “very delicate [and] very sensitive,” and that he appreciated NBA Commissioner Adam Silver meeting with the players in China to discuss the unfolding controversy, which included numerous events canceled and led Chinese broadcasters and sponsors to quickly cut ties with the Rockets.
“I’m not here to judge how the league handled the situation,” James said. “When you’re misinformed or not educated about something, and I’m just talking about the tweet itself, you never know the ramifications that can happen. We can all see what that did, for our league and for all of us in America, and people in China as well. Sometimes you have to think through things that may cause harm not only for yourself but for the majority of people. … It was a tough situation for Adam as well, having to put out such a fire that he didn’t create and he didn’t start.”
James is the second NBA superstar to make headlines for commenting on the Morey situation and the sec