Asked to comment on an ongoing free speech row between the NBA and China sparked by a pro-Hong Kong tweet sent last week, President Trump on Wednesday opted to attack NBA coaches rather than comment on Beijing’s role.
The president specifically criticized Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr and San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich for their response to China’s various moves to scorn the NBA after an executive expressed support for Hong Kong protesters. He accused the pair of “pandering to China” for not speaking out and suggested they didn’t have “respect” for America, complaining that they “talk badly about the United States.”
Popovich, a former Air Force member, has been outspoken in his criticism of the Trump administration. ESPN reports that Kerr has also previously been very outspoken about social issues in the U.S. and has spoken negatively about Trump in public.
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