No chance at all he (Yao Ming) puts on a uniform at the Worlds. He’s coming off the injury. He’s slowly getting back into his individual workouts. He won’t be cleared by then. (Robert Donewald, Chinese national team coach)
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: China’s loss is the Houston Rockets’ gain.
Yao Ming will not suit up for China at the upcoming FIBA World Championship in Turkey because the 7-6 pivot is still recovering from a foot injury which forced him to miss the entire 2010 season.
For China, the loss is obvious. They were manhandled on the low block in an 82-60 loss against an upstart and scrappy Canadian team at the Jack Donahue International Classic in Vancouver, BC.
Bigger, muscular posts will have their way with the slighter Chinese bigs in Turkey.
What`s bad for China is good for Houston. The Rockets re-signed their key free agents this off-season, and are looking forward to a full training camp with scorer Kevin Martin, who was acquired at the trade deadline from the Sacramento Kings.
So Yao is skipping the intense two-week World Championship to try to return for the NBA season.
This is wise. Former Toronto Raptor Jorge Garbajosa compromised his NBA career by going against GM Bryan Colangelo’s wishes and playing for Spain at the European Championship before his ankle had fully healed.
Of course, the stakes are higher for Houston than Toronto. Garbajosa was a useful glue-guy; Yao is an elite center.
Come to think of it, the stakes are high for Yao, too. The perennial All-Star has said he’ll retire if his foot doesn’t heal.
Perhaps, China’s loss is Houston and Yao’s gain.
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