In today’s Rocket Science a Hall-of-Fame tribute to Houston Rockets legend Yao Ming.
The 7’6 center from Shanghai, China took the basketball world by storm during the summer of 2002. Yao Ming became the first international player ever selected with the first pick in the draft by the Houston Rockets. Throughout his career Yao became a global icon who bridged the gap between China and the NBA.
Ming’s NBA debut occurred 14 years ago. ESPN‘s Calvin Watkins has reported that Yao Ming will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame this summer.
"The 7-foot-6 Yao, whose career started in Shanghai in the Chinese Basketball Association, was the first pick in the 2002 draft and is given much of the credit for bringing the NBA to China. He was the league’s first Chinese star, and NBA merchandise sales and television ratings in China mushroomed during his career. In 2007, a game his Rockets played against the Milwaukee Bucks, featuring Yi Jianlian, was broadcast on 19 networks in China and watched by more than 200 million people in the country, making it one of the most-watched NBA games in history."
Unfortunately, everyone was not delighted in Yao’s induction into the Hall-of-Fame. During the latest episode of Jalen & Jacoby. Former NBA player Jalen Rose expressed his displeasure in the newest honorary Wednesday afternoon.
YIKES! It is quite obvious Rose is a little salty after receiving the news about Yao. However, there isn’t much to expect from a guy who allowed another player to score 81 points on him.
Over an eight-year span with the Rockets. Yao became an eight-time NBA-All Star, averaging 19.0 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 1.9 blocks. However, during his CBA career with the Shanghai Sharks, Yao became a CBA champion and finals MVP in 2002, averaging 38.9 points and 20.2 rebounds per game. In a recent phone interview with Mark Berman of Fox 26 Houston. Yao says it’s hard for him to explain how honored he is.
"they’re “Think about it,” Yao said. “My name will be standing right next to all those basketball superstars like Shaquille O’Neil, Dikembe Mutombo, Dream (Hakeem Olajuwon), Clyde (Drexler), Dr. J (Julius Erving), Moses (Malone), those guys. Just to have my name next to them, will be hard to explain how honored I am. To be honest with you getting to the Hall of Fame was not my dream, in the beginning, not even the NBA,” Yao said. “Basketball is my dream. I just feel fortunate so many rewards during my career. Can live in Houston. Can play for the Rockets. To be blessed (in getting) into the Hall of Fame. All those things can only raise my appreciation for that."
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