Yao Ming, China's most famous athlete, is officially retiring from the NBA. The 7'6'' Houston Rocket center has faced a lot of injuries over the last couple of years and he has decided enough is enough. This list covers all the highlights from Yao Ming's career - on and off the court. His career peaked in 2006-2007, when he averaged 25 points per game. But, this number would not last. He slowly became prone to injury and started facing the reality that he is a 7'6'' giant... and people that tall are rather fragile.Bonus: are you aware of the Yao Ming funny side? Yao Ming career high scoring and rebounding is nothing to scoff at, but he's a funny guy as well. Read on to reminisce about his storied basketball career.
Yao Ming Meets Verne Troyer
The tallest and shortest celebrities come face-to-face in this spot for Apple's 12" and 17" PowerBooks. (Get it?) Yao and Verne Troyer (better known as "Mini-Me" from the Austin Powers films) are boarding a plane near one another when they both reach for their laptops. Humorously, Yao uses the smaller 12" PowerBook while Verne grabs his 17" PowerBook. (You may also notice that the narrator of the ad is none other than actor Jeff Goldblum.)
#1 Overall Pick in the 2002 NBA Draft
Yao was selected by the Houston Rockets as the #1 overall pick in the 2002 NBA Draft. It doesn't get much better than that.The deal was a long time in the planning. The Rockets sought special permission from the China Basketball Association to pick up Yao (who was already a star in his homeland). Through an interpreter, while still in Beijing, Yao told reporters that he was excited for the start of "my new basketball life" and said "This is a new league in front of me for me to play, so it will be a new challenge for me."
Yao Ming Posterizes LeBron
Yao brutally dunks over the top of LeBron James in this clip from a February 2009 game between the Rockets and the Cleveland Cavaliers. This led to much debate between fans over the importance of a height differential when blocking shots.
Yao Ming Ejected from Game
Yao was known for his class as a player. But, apparently even polite 7.5" Chinese men get irritated at the refs every once in a while. Check out this video of Yao getting kicked out of the game against the Sacramento Kings on December 1, 2007, and his ensuing frustration.