yi-jianlian
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Sunday , Jan , 01 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Why Yi? Did Mavericks miss mark with Chinese star?

The Dallas Mavericks are about to sign a player they've long coveted, reaching terms Saturday on a one-year contract with free-agent forward Yi Jianlian, according to sources with knowledge of the deal.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: I like Yi. I, however, don't like him on the Dallas Mavericks.

The four-man is tall, skilled, and talented, which means he could be a rotation player for most teams.

But the Mavericks are different than most. The world champions do not need another skilled guy like Yi, as they recently added Vince Carter and Lamar Odom.

Here's what they do need: a grimy, blue-collar big to fill part of the void created by Tyson Chandler's departure to the New York Knicks.

Chandler brought an intensity, especially on the defensive end, that took the Mavericks from good to great. He was a one-man zone that solidified the back-end for Coach Rick Carlisle.

That's gone. And since they haven't replaced Chandler, so are the Mavericks' chances of repeating.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

 

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Friday , Jul , 08 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Yao Ming, the bridge between China and NBA, retires

Rockets' Yao Ming has decided to retire from the NBA, league sources tell Y! Sports. He informed the league office within past 48 hours.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Mr. International is done.

Reports indicate that Yao Ming has retired from the NBA due to lingering foot problems. Sadly, the Chinese post barely got off injured-reserve the last few years.

In his prime, Yao could play. The first overall pick in the 2002 draft was a regular at the league’s mid-season classic, the All-Star game. While his Houston Rockets struggled in the playoffs, Yao always stuffed the stat-sheet with scoring averages of 20 points per game.

His legacy will always be China, though. Yao was the main reason the NBA penetrated and profited from the lucrative Chinese market.

Yao's greatest moment may have been an exhibition match between his Rockets and Yi's Milwaukee Bucks. Hundreds of millions of Chinese citizens watched this pre-season contest, confirming Commissioner David Stern's hunch that the league's future was in Asia. 

Other Chinese basketball players will follow Yao to the NBA. And the NBA will follow Yao back to China.

This bridge Yao created between China and the NBA will stand for years to come. His influence and legacy is only just starting.

Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Friday , Jun , 10 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Yao: ‘I don’t even know if I can play again’

The towering Houston Rockets center, China's most recognizable athlete, told CCTV he could not predict when, or indeed if, he would fully recover from a serious ankle fracture suffered last November."I don't know if I would join some champion team in the future," the China Daily quoted him as saying when asked about leaving a new-look Rockets team. "I don't even know if I can play again."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s sad if this is the end.

For years, Yao Ming was excellent. He was incredibly skilled and talented, often averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds, the benchmark for elite fives.

However, Yao never took the Rockets deep in the playoffs. His massive stature lead to numerous injuries.

Yao’s greatest contribution will be spreading basketball into the lucrative Chinese market. He was, after all, the league’s first Chinese star. And the world’s most populous nation followed his every move, which was good for David Stern and the suits at league head office.

Tens of millions of Chinese watched a regular season match-up between Yao’s Rockets and Yi’s Bucks. Perhaps half a billion people would watch one of these two in the NBA Finals.

Some of those billions will aspire to play in the NBA. A few may make it. And this will be, in part, because of Yao.

--Oly Sandor.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Sunday , Feb , 06 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Al Thornton defines poster-job with tomahawk facial on ZaZa Pachulia

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It was nasty, even by youtube, poster-job standards.

Yesterday, Washington Wizards three-man Al Thornton, you may remember him from his days with the L.A. Clippers, threw down a vicious tomahawk jam over the Atlanta Hawks Zaza Pachulia.

Thornton’s jam drew an incredible reaction from the Verizon Centre fans and the Wizards bench. So watch the clip, form your own reaction, and get at us with thoughts in the comment box below.

(Even the stoic Yi is laughing!)

--Oly Sandor.

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Tuesday , Jun , 29 , 2010 Hoopsvibe

Nets save $3 million by trading Yi to Wizards for Ross

The New Jersey Nets traded Yi Jianlian to the Washington Wizards for Quinton Ross on Tuesday.

The Nets sent the Wizards $3 million to complete the deal and also received the Wizards' trade exception, according to league sources.

The move allows the Nets to clear another $3 million in cap space to spend on free agency this summer.

Yi is scheduled to make $4 million next season. Ross is set to make $1.1 million. The Nets should now have roughly $30 million in cap space to spend after the move, according to sources.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: One team's junk is another team's treasure.

Cap space is king for the New Jersey Nets, as the club needs financial flexibility to sign free agents this summer. And trading Yi Jianlian saves the Nets $3 million and puts them on equal footing with the Chicago Bulls.

Instead of conserving cap space to take a run at a big ticket free agent, the Washington Wizards are taking a different approach. The Wizards are acquiring assets on the cheap from teams who need to cut payroll to compete in the Chris Bosh, LeBron James, and/or Dwyane Wade sweepstakes.

For instance, the Wizards scored Kirk Hinrich on draft day. The cost: assuming the combo guard's $9 million per season salary.

Hinrich can back-up both guard spots and mentor first overall pick John Wall, while Yi will fill in for - and hopefully replace - injured four-man Andray Blatche.

Expect a few more of these deals before the July 1st free agent market opens.

Got thoughts?