1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

Chronicle: Yao gives hint of talent

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by prlen, Aug 17, 2002.

  1. prlen

    prlen Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2002
    Messages:
    738
    Likes Received:
    0
    Chronicle: Yao gives hint of talent

    Rockets' top pick makes most of limited touches
    By JONATHAN FEIGEN
    Copyright 2002 Houston Chronicle
    VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- With the spotlight following his every move, Yao Ming offered his first performance on a North American stage and followed the show-business adage perfectly. He did just enough to leave the audience, including Rockets coach Rudy Tomjanovich, happy, hopeful, but hungry for more.

    When he shot the ball, Yao was perfect. He just did not have a chance to shoot often. When he used his size, he could be awesome. But he also said he needed to add girth to his enormous height.

    A guest star in Steve Nash's show Friday, the 7-5 Yao was not quite a scene-stealer. But he had his moments. The shooting touch was every bit as advertised. Yao made all six of his shots and all five of his free throws to finish with 17 points.

    But his clearest lesson might have been that Nash, the first Canadian NBA All-Star, was on another level from everyone else on the court in the exhibition between Canada and the Chinese national team. In a 94-66 Canadian rout, Nash scored a team-high 25 points in his final Canadian game of the summer.

    But Yao impressed.

    "I believe Yao will have a very good NBA career," Nash said. "He's going to create his own legacy. He's going to have a great impact on the league. Houston is really fortunate to have him."

    Yao said the experience showed him he will have plenty of work to do.

    "I need more weight training," he said. "No. 23 (6-6, 260-pound Canadian backup center Richard Anderson) is so strong. He was so physical. Maybe I can get stronger than him."

    But Tomjanovich was not about to complain. If anything, he seemed even more eager to get Yao on an NBA court where officials likely would prevent the inside wrestling match of Friday's game. Tomjanovich said he was no more excited about getting Yao, but only because he had been so thrilled.

    "It was great," Tomjanovich said. "I will say, I liked what I saw. I got a feel for what he could do. Thank God we have the rules that we have. I have been excited all along. Nothing has changed the way I feel about the guy."

    Unlike the last NBA game in Vancouver, when the Rockets and Steve Francis became easy targets to vent frustration and cause to demonstrate nationalistic pride, the game was treated as a happy celebration. There were more Chinese flags in GM Place than Canadian. The crowd of 12,070 cheered Nash's every move but also delighted in Yao's dunk.

    But for those looking for a first North American glimpse of what the Rockets will get when Yao joins them, there were only hints.

    With his teammates unable to get him the ball, Yao led his team in scoring, but had little impact on the game. But he did provide the night's best highlight that did not involve Nash.

    Canada needed only to apply consistent ball pressure on the Chinese guards to keep the ball away from Yao inside. China tried to post-up Yao, but it was all the guards could do to keep the ball.

    With his hands on the ball for just the third time in the game's first 7 1/2 minutes, Yao quickly turned on Anderson and threw down a violent slam through a hard foul.

    Wearing No. 13, rather than the No. 11 he will wear with the Rockets, and playing with no less than an eight-inch height advantage throughout the game, Yao was unable to become a consistent part of the Chinese offense his guards could not run. But he did seem to grow more at ease throughout the game.

    Yao, who averaged 32.4 points per game in China last season, added five rebounds, five blocked shots and three steals.

    But in a more general sense, for Tomjanovich, Yao's first days in North America were a success well before the Chinese team arrived in GM Place, in uniform, 45 minutes before tipoff. Yao was greeted with cheers in introductions, apparently indicating that Hakeem Olajuwon was not the only Rockets center to have earned Vancouver's affection.

    But Tomjanovich was so pleased with his visit with Yao on Thursday, he was moved to make another Olajuwon comparison.

    "I talked to him after (meeting with Yao's) coach," Tomjanovich said. "I was pretty excited about the meeting with the coach and I was talking really fast. I said, `Normally I talk slower.' I told him I would try not to talk so fast. He really reminded me of Hakeem. He said, `You shouldn't have to adjust to me, I'll adjust to you.' "

    Tomjanovich was not sure if he would get to talk with Yao at all. But Thursday, Tomjanovich visited with Yao for an hour and 15 minutes, discussing everything from Rockets plays to players.

    "I feel like he felt comfortable with me," Tomjanovich said. "I felt comfortable with him."

    Yao also said he enjoyed the meeting. But more importantly, he also seemed to be looking forward to putting it to use.

    "I just got to know him," Yao said. "I don't think I can have that much time to train with the Rockets. If we can start with each other, that's a good beginning."
     
    #1 prlen, Aug 17, 2002
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2002
  2. guest

    guest Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2002
    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0
    nice little article......... :)
     
  3. Stevie Francis

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2002
    Messages:
    1,166
    Likes Received:
    0
    thanx for the good read. Yeah base dupon those stats that guy will win ROY
     
  4. AroundTheWorld

    AroundTheWorld ಠ_ರೃ
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2000
    Messages:
    41,489
    Likes Received:
    5,576
    Great article. I really like Yao's attitude...humble, but hungry!
     
  5. rockbox

    rockbox Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2000
    Messages:
    16,549
    Likes Received:
    2,647
    The thing I like most about him is that he has a lot of confidence without being cocky. He knows what he needs to work on and appears to have no problem working on it.

    Its kinda like him saying " I know I can't beat you now, but I will able to soon."
     
  6. montgo

    montgo Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2000
    Messages:
    945
    Likes Received:
    0
    couple observations from what I have seen in clips, read and put together from liv observations:

    1. the guard play is horrible on China's team. They do not know how to get the ball inside and where to pass it for optimum scoring opps. The Chinese guards react versus anticipate Ming's positioning, which is too late. The Rockets guards know how.

    2. Chineseing coaching is not as consistent as Rockets. The Rockets will teach offensive positioning on the court that will allow a bigman to have more scoring opportunities

    3. Yao has some attitude! We like that.

    4. Yao can be powerful when he gets the ball in the right position. Recall how Shaq is unstoppable in the certain position in the paint. It looks like the same for Ming due to his size. I am certain, Stevie and Mobes and Mooch will learn this positioning and get him the ball as he gets there not late

    5. This guy is the real deal. He might not be overly dominating in the his first couple years, look for him to be something to prepare for in his 2-3 year
     
  7. aznlincolnpark

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2002
    Messages:
    646
    Likes Received:
    0
    pretty good article...... Did yao ming hold his ground or push around???

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Rashmon

    Rashmon Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2000
    Messages:
    14,680
    Likes Received:
    4,948
    `You shouldn't have to adjust to me, I'll adjust to you.'

    I love this guy.
     
  9. guest

    guest Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2002
    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0
    ' I told him I would try not to talk so fast. He really reminded me of Hakeem. He said
     
Loading...

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now