It is not official yet, Yao Ming will soon announce his retirement from the sport after nine years in the NBA. A new announcement initially by Yahoo Sports before being taken over by the entire American press and confirmed by Chinese media colleagues. Aged just 30 years old, 2.26 meters giant wanted to continue with the Houston Rockets, except that his body forced him to say stop – a stress fracture in his left ankle which occurred on November 10 in Washington. Often hampered by injuries during his career (250 games missed over the last six years), Yao participated in only five games last season and none in 2009-2010.
Been chosen in the first position of the 2002 Draft, Yao Ming leaves the North American League with eight times All-Star Game and averaged 19 points, 9.2 rebounds, 1.9 against per game. Yao Ming appeared to enter the NBA Hall of Fame in the future and he is already one of the greatest players in the history of Houston Rockets along with Moses Malone and Hakeem Olajuwon.
A true icon in China, flag-bearer at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, Yao Ming helped popularize basketball in general and the NBA in particular. His teammates in Houston have also thoroughly enjoyed, as a number of them have signed advertising contracts in China. Steve Francis is playing the same party there at the end of his career.
Unlike other giants Gheorghe Muresan (2.31 m), Manute Bol (2.31 m) and Shawn Bradley (2.29 m), Yao Ming was a real good basketball player, skilful to shoots (52.4% career) and free throws (83.3%), capable of dominating on offense and defense. A player who might have been able to bring Houston to the top without his injuries. “I’ll miss you, my brother.” said Shaquille O’Neal in a video clip. “You were one of the greatest players of our time.”
The future for Yao Ming? Spending time with family, take care of his basketball team, the Shanghai Sharks, and continue to act in various charities. According to the Chinese press, there will be more detail at a press conference on July 20.