Blog Entry

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

Posted on: October 13, 2010 10:22 am
Edited on: August 14, 2011 7:47 pm

Houston Rockets center Yao Ming shows nicely in an NBA preseason exhibition game against the New Jersey Nets in Beijing, China.

Posted by Ben Golliver.

Pardon my pessimism, but the early reports regarding Houston’s plan to impose a strict playing time limit on center Yao Ming, who is returning from a lengthy rehabilitation after undergoing foot surgery, had me spooked. A body that big with a base that potentially fragile is a ticking time bomb, and it’s one that comes with any number of psychological hurdles to go along with the physical ones. Watching Yao play well in Houston's 91-81 exhibition win over the New Jersey Nets on Wednesday morning in Beijing, then, came as a pleasant surprise.

Yao’s first-half play was solid, noteworthy for the smoothness of his gait and his activity level on both ends. On offense, Yao extended out to the three-point line to set high screens with ease and he extended smoothly to provide help defense as well. As is often the case during preseason, the game was an up-and-down affair with plenty of quick triggers. Yao kept pace with mobile Nets center Brook Lopez, one of the league's best young big men, thanks in part to the relatively short length of his stints in both the first and second quarters.

It was during the first six minutes of the third quarter that Yao really distinguished himself. He drew two quick fouls on Houston defenders, hit a 20 foot face-up jumper, and continued to effortlessly set high screens for point guard Aaron Brooks. He was perhaps even better defensively, playing the passing lanes to grab a steal, starting transition play with two outlet passes and positioning his body effectively to defend and frustrate Lopez on the low block. Although he appeared to tire slightly and didn’t commit to rebounding on every possession, his impact was unmistakeable.

Yao’s third-quarter run ended with a thud, as he bowled over Nets guard Devin Harris, who cheekily stepped in front of his path in transition, and came crashing to the court. Man down! Cue panic response. But Yao rose quickly and with a wry smile, clearly disagreeing with the player control foul but not letting it spoil his good humor.

Taken together -- his movement, his mood -- it's fair to call Yao’s 9 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist, and 2 steals effort in 18 minutes a baby step back to normal.


Since: Oct 1, 2010
Posted on: October 15, 2010 9:48 am

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

Houston could be pretty good, if Yao can stay healthy, that is a big if. I think they could best the Spurs, if Yao is healthy. This writer says Yao will get injured again and the rockets will finish 3rd in the southwest division.


Since: Sep 3, 2010
Posted on: October 14, 2010 10:25 am

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

A healthy Yao could take us a long way. Go Rockets


Since: Jul 29, 2008
Posted on: October 13, 2010 7:01 pm

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

I hope Yao can stay healthy for 1 season and prove that he is the best center in the NBA when healthy. Its sad to see this guy get injured every year just bc he is freakishly large. Sadly I see him getting injured again soon and his NBA career being over for good, sad to see a guy with his talent never reach its potential.

Since: Oct 23, 2006
Posted on: October 13, 2010 6:49 pm

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

Ming has freakish size for being Oriental.  I have to beleive that his foot structure will never hold up for 82 NBA games, even if he has limited minutes.

Since: Jul 22, 2010
Posted on: October 13, 2010 5:21 pm

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

Yea someone needs to edit this again..

Anyway I hope yall can at least put up 10 pts, 5-7 rbs, 3 assits, and 4 steats, with a block or half of block

Since: Aug 20, 2006
Posted on: October 13, 2010 3:44 pm

Yao Ming takes baby step back to normal in China

"He drew two quick fouls on Houston defenders"

That's a problem if Houston is defending their own player...

Since: Jul 9, 2010
Posted on: October 13, 2010 1:05 pm

Whoa Horsie!

Take it easy, Yao. Houston needs you for at least 10 regular season games before you reinjure yourself.

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