Two pre-season exhibition games in China between the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets have been overshadowed by a Chinese backlash against a Houston Rockets executive’s expression of support last Friday for Hong Kong pro-democracy protests.

“We have decided not to hold media availability for our teams for the remainder of our trip in China,” the NBA said in a statement.

“They have been placed into a complicated and unprecedented situation while abroad and we believe it would be unfair to ask them to address these matters in real time.”