Steve Francis' team ordered to criticize him

December, 21, 2010
12/21/10
10:42
AM ET
Abbott By Henry Abbott
ESPN.com
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Globalization was always going to be a "feeling out" process.

Steve Francis has been a disappointment for his Beijing team, and has even gotten into trouble with the League's office for reportedly making a rude gesture from the bench.

But whereas in the NBA, David Stern's staff might fine or suspend Francis for such a thing, in the Chinese Basketball Association, the league has, according to the Agence France-Presse (via HoopsHype) ordered his Beijing team to, among other things, "educate and criticize" Francis for his uncivilized behavior.

Let's just take the report's word for it that Francis has been a miserably bad employee thus far this season. Nevertheless, when you read that, don't you just think: Wow, that's not how we handle things in the U.S.A. Here, that kind of public humiliation by an employer is asking for lawyers and all kinds of other stuff to be involved. We just do not do that.

I'm sure there are plenty of people out there who would love to see players treated harshly and ripped apart publicly.

Not me. The NBA fails at this in various ways from time to time, but I'm thankful that, generally, efforts are made to preserve players' dignity. And I hope that, as basketball becomes becomes an increasingly global game, the NBA's approach prevails.

Because I don't want to live in a world where employers criticize and reeducate their employees as a matter of course. There are better ways.

Henry Abbott | email

TrueHoop, NBA

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