China is very clear when it comes to foreign companies operating online games domestically through a joint venture or sole investment -- they do not tolerate it. Without argument, GAPP approval is required for any foreign online games. If they find that the NetEase and Blizzard deal aimed to operate as a joint venture, thus allowing Blizzard more control of their MMO in China, things could become bad for the two companies.
Without GAPP approval, World of Warcraft cannot be displayed publicly, traded or promoted. If a company were to attempt such a thing without approval, GAPP has said they will shoulder legal responsiblities. Assuming that were to happen, it could become very difficult for Blizzard to find a Chinese distributor for World of Warcraft. Considering the massive amounts of players who live in China, 11 million subscribers could be easily halved in the worst case scenario.