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check two
07-08-2011, 05:32 PM
--Sources: Rockets Yao set to retire


Yao Ming(notes), one of the seminal figures in the globalization of the NBA, has decided to retire after nine injury-plagued seasons with the Houston Rockets, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

Yao played just five games last season, and hasn’t been able to fully recover after having surgery in January to repair a stress fracture in his left foot. The veteran center informed the Rockets, the league office in New York and NBA China of his decision to leave the game within the past 48 hours, sources said.

Yao was set to become a free agent once the league’s lockout ends. He was once poised to become the league’s dominant big man, but lower-body injuries repeatedly sidelined him over the course of his career. He missed at least 25 games in five of the past six seasons.

Yao, who was the top overall pick of the 2002 NBA draft, finishes his career with per-game averages of 19.0 points, 9.3 rebounds and 1.9 blocked shots.

Yao had hoped the surgery would allow him to return for the 2011-12 season – and said he’d like to return to the Rockets. But he also conceded that he may have already played his final game.

Yao appeared to be nearing his peak when he averaged 19.7 points and 9.9 rebounds over 77 games in the 2008-09 season. But after helping lead the Rockets past the Portland Trail Blazers in the first round of the playoffs, he broke his left foot in a tough series with the Los Angeles Lakers. Yao underwent a complicated surgery – similar to the one that saved the career of Miami Heat center Zydrunas Ilgauskas – and missed all of the next season. He never truly regained his form, lasting just five games last season before suffering another stress fracture.

“A career is almost like a car race,” Yao told Yahoo! Sports’ Marc Spears in March 2010. “You push the gas to see how good the car is. It takes time to get from zero to 100 miles [per hour]. This is the same thing. You don’t want to hit a hard brake. This is a hard brake for me. If you want me to start up again, you probably need me to take some time.”

The injuries kept Yao from ever fully reaching his potential – and prevented the Rockets from continuing to build off their success in 2009.

“If he was never injured, he would have been one of the greatest centers ever,” said Rafer Alston, a point guard for the Rockets from 2005-09. “You can’t guard him. You had to foul him. He’s 7-6, so he has a height advantage. He had the jump hook over the shoulder.

“If he was healthy we would have gone far. He would have been one of the greatest centers of all-time if he was healthy.”

The Rockets acquired Tracy McGrady prior to Yao’s third season in the league, hoping to give their center a superstar complement. Injuries to both, however, limited the Rockets to just one playoff series victory in their tenure together.

“I feel very honored to have not only played with one of the greatest big men in our league, but to also call him my friend,” McGrady said. “I wish Yao continued success in all his ventures in life.”

The NBA loses one of its few remaining star centers with Yao’s retirement. Shaquille O’Neal, a rival and friend of Yao’s, ended his 19-season career in June.

“Yao will definitely be missed,” O’Neal said in an email. “He is in my mind one of the best centers ever to play. He is the one of the greatest athletes ever to come out of China, and I will miss him.”

-http://sports.yahoo.com/nba/news?slug=aw-wojnarowski_yao_ming_retiring_070811

spiggity_ace
07-08-2011, 06:05 PM
such a letdown for such a promising big man, put em on the list with penny, and tmac, injuries held these guys down.

i remember like 3 or 4 years ago watching yao ming and thinking this is the nxt big thing rite here, wish the injuries let em go.

check two
07-08-2011, 06:18 PM
Sorry to see him have to retire, but it's about time that the Rockets move on. They had McGrady and Ming on the sidelines for way too long. And it goes beyond McGrady's injuries, he's just a parasite.

spiggity_ace
07-09-2011, 12:29 AM
ahh the rockets have a lot of promising young players to carry the team forward, kyle lowry is underrated at the pg, kevin martin is a great scorer, marcus morris will be good, and patrick patterson will be one of those guys that people in th eleague will over look, and they got the wildcard terrence williams who could put up like 23 a game but for some reason every coach he has hates him

SHEEPISH LORD OF CHAOS
07-09-2011, 01:13 AM
damn not shocked though yao ming hasn't really played well in 2 or 3 years and never recovered plus china was drilling this dude into the ground by making him play for his national team and while we still in the NBA. always thought that was gon be his downfall.

spiggity_ace
07-09-2011, 04:47 AM
damn not shocked though yao ming hasn't really played well in 2 or 3 years and never recovered plus china was drilling this dude into the ground by making him play for his national team and while we still in the NBA. always thought that was gon be his downfall.

true a guy his size needs his rest, big guys can't be as active as kobe, its just not possible, i feel bad for him, but the type of guy yao ming is i don't think he'll have any regrets

BIG D O
07-11-2011, 02:14 AM
this was tuff...

even still, Yao surpassed my initial thoughts about him when he was drafted... I didn't think he'd ever be a major factor as a player...

he turned it around there after awhile and was well on his way to being a lot better than anyone could of ever imagined....the injuries just kept nagging him...

in any case, I heard he was just recently married, hope him and his new wife are enjoying the life and continue to do them...