February 26, 2008

A Crushing Blow to Yao Ming and the Rockets: The future of the Houston Rockets is back on spin cycle. The player some believe plays like Bill Walton is now threatening to have a career like ... Bill Walton.

posted by justgary to basketball at 04:24 PM - 9 comments

Maybe Phoenix will send the Shaquille O'Neal.

posted by dyams at 05:15 PM on February 26, 2008

Tall dudes break down a lot. Nothing more relevant for me to add. Of course, I speak from the perspective of a man who has attained the staggering height of 5'7". I feel bad for the tall guys. I take comfort in the knowledge that I will be a "little old man" one day. I don't know a lot of "tall old men". Tall dudes break down. A lot.

posted by THX-1138 at 05:43 PM on February 26, 2008

What a kick in the nuts for the Rockets and their fans. Just when it appears Yao was going to pull off a full season, right when they're peaking on a 12-game winning streak and slowly moving up the Western Conference standings, it all comes crashing down. In a normal year, I'd put up with arguments that this wouldn't automatically knock a team out of playoff contention. This isn't a normal year, and the West is far too crazy and far too close for a team to absorb the loss of it's star player. For what it's worth, since the ESPN article brought it up, Rockets team doctor Tom Clanton stated that he doesn't expect this to keep Yao from playing in the Olympics this Summer.

posted by Ufez Jones at 06:01 PM on February 26, 2008

Arrgg that sucks for Rockets fans. One of the more interesting players in the NBA.

posted by aerotive at 01:17 AM on February 27, 2008

There's no way the Rockets can overcome this. If they make it to the playoffs, they'll never make it past the first round. They have a grueling schedule coming up in March. You should of heard the local sports radio chatter here in Houston. I thought I was listening to someone's funeral on Sports Radio 610 AM

posted by texasred at 08:26 AM on February 27, 2008

At least one Chinese newspaper (is there more than one?) is blaming the Rockets for overplaying Ming and not having an adequate back-up.

posted by wfrazerjr at 09:14 AM on February 27, 2008

Both Yao and T-mac are too fragile. The same thing happens every year. Just when it looks like the Yao/T-mac combo is about to dominate the league, one or both get hurt. And even when healthy, this team isn't good enough to compete with the best teams in the west. Sure, they're on a big win streak, but so was Portland. Last year, both players were hurt, but the team still found a way to win 50 games, only to get beat by the Jazz in a game 7 at home. For me, it sucks to be a Sonics fan right now, but at least I have hope for the future (regardless of where that future will be). With the Rockets, you have two amazing players who get your hopes up, but can't ever get you out of the first round of the playoffs.

posted by chamo at 11:05 AM on February 27, 2008

Well this sucks. I find myself really liking Yao for a lot of different reasons, work ethic, his arc of progression, the fact that he handles himself really well in the most stressful position of just about any athlete in America (when you realize how heavily his every move is scrutinized by the BILLION + people in China). He is also worn down every summer playing for the Chinese national team, so he gets little rest. History will tell you that most guys that big who play as much as Yao get injured often. Again, this sucks.

posted by sic at 01:43 AM on February 28, 2008

Somehow I don't see Dikembe being the answer to the loss of Yao. In his first game as a starter, I watched him do that stupid finger-wagging thing instead of running the floor at least twice. Somebody needs to remind him that he's a professional basketball player, not some damn kid on the playground; quit wagging your finger at people and leaving your team in a four-on-five situation at the other end of the floor. You play defense. You block shots. I get it.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 05:33 AM on February 28, 2008

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