U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) accused LeBron James of “kissing up to tyrants and murderers,” after the NBA star cited the “negative” side-effects of free speech in an interview with reporters Monday night.
James created a storm of controversy on Monday night when he said Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey “wasn’t educated” on the China-Hong Kong issue before he sent his message of support to pro-democracy demonstrators.
Lakers’ LeBron James on NBA’s China controversy: “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.” pic.twitter.com/KKrMNU0dKR
— Ben Golliver (@BenGolliver) October 15, 2019
In response, the Texan and former presidential candidate told TMZ Sports that it appears James is “more interested in money and making bucks” than fighting for human rights.
“I don’t have a problem with [athletes speaking out on politics]. What I have a problem with is when they don’t know what they’re talking about and they end up defending tyrants.”
As TMZ Sports reports:
James continues to deal with the fallout from his comments on Monday. On Tuesday, the Lakers forward said he’s “not a politician,” and will not be discussing the NBA-China rift again.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter @themightygwinn