Tuesday , Jul , 27 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Yao Ming on his injured foot: `I might choose to call it quits`

Houston Rockets centre Yao Ming is considering quitting basketball after next season if he doesn’t fully recover from his lingering foot injury.

In comments to Chinese state media Monday, Yao sounded far from optimistic about his future and also made a rare criticism of China`s national basketball program.

“If the foot injury does not heal next season, “I might choose to call it quits,” he said.

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Once upon a time, it looked like he wouldn’t make it.

Years ago, Yao Ming was a polite, but awkward rookie trying to survive his first NBA season.  Everybody took shots -including TNT broadcasters Charles Barkley and Kenny Smith who believed he’d never score 20 points in a game.

The pundits were wrong. Yao quickly found his way. Today, on-and-off court, he’s an international sensation.

When healthy, he’s a top center, a giant with touch and skill. Off-court, he helped the league succeed in the lucrative Chinese market. Thanks to Yao, the NBA is now a global brand.

Hopefully, he makes a comeback. His return would turn the Houston Rockets into a highly competitive squad in the Western Conference.

Whatever happens, his legacy, in America and at home, is complete. Yao has certainly made it.

–Oly Sandor.

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