Yao Ming, aka the most famous Asian athlete in the world, might miss the entirety of the next NBA season. However, that’s not the worst case scenario. According to ESPN, the stress fracture in his foot could be career threatening. Never mind the impact this has on his team, the Houston Rockets, and never mind the impact this has on the parity of the always heated Western NBA conference, I’m wondering what this could possibly mean to Asian basketball in general.
Yao Ming jerseys have been one of the most popular sellers in the NBA since he joined the league. He is a perennial NBA all-star and one of the top five players at his position. Yao is an icon and hero to an entire 1/6th of the world’s population carrying the home flag for China in last year’s Olypmics. So yea, losing him would not be good.
We’ll have to wait till next week for more information as Yao gets second and third opinions from doctors around the world.
He’s always had foot or knee related injuries. During the 2008 season, the one before the Olympics, Yao suffered a pretty serious foot injury half-way through. It took him out for the rest of that season and many speculated the Olympics as well. However he pulled a small miracle coming back in time to make it for the Olympics but I’m wondering if he really was ready to come back. Not that I fault him for possibly risking his career to play for his home country when his home country was the host nation. But you have to wonder if these things are related.
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