Will Beijing let the NBA back in?

The unprecedented punishment of the NBA by Beijing last fall has led to lasting damage for the league, to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, NBA commissioner Adam Silver said recently per the Wall Street Journal. “Chinese state-run television still hasn’t broadcast the NBA this season,” and the salary caps of players have been restricted in response, the WSJ reports.

The New York Times says that the situation may be slowly changing:

…there’s been a sign of a slight warming in relations between China and the league. The NBA has given financial assistance for the outbreak of the coronavirus, which has infected tens of thousands in mainland China. Silver said the league was discussing playing more preseason games in China next fall, and that U.S.A. Basketball could play an exhibition game there before the Tokyo Olympics, but that nothing was firm.

“We are not pressing them,” Silver said, referring to the Chinese government. “It’s a decision that’s outside of certainly our control, and I will say, I’m often not sure exactly where that decision lies. I think that our view as the league is we should continue doing the things that we’ve done in the past.”

—Lucas Niewenhuis