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Washington Times: Wizards awaiting first look at Yao

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by heech, Nov 22, 2002.

  1. heech

    heech Contributing Member

    May 20, 2002
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    God, I hate the Washington Times. It's a conservative rag that bashes on China at every opportunity... I have to say I believe political motivations are at least partly behind their bashing of Yao (read some of their draft-time articles for more indication of this). It's almost amusing how this guy works in the mention of Yao's 30 points against Dallas... despite the fact it almost single-handedly defeats the "point" of the article.


    Wizards awaiting first look at Yao
    By John N. Mitchell

    There is irony in Yao Ming's nickname, the "Little Giant." The 7-foot-6 center of the Houston Rockets is one of nine players in NBA history to stand at least 7-4. Top Stories

    Yet there are those who believe that Yao, the top pick in the 2002 draft and the first foreigner to be drafted No.1 overall, may have little impact on the league.
    "Yao Ming makes Shawn Bradley look like Bill Russell," TNT analyst and future Hall of Famer Charles Barkley said. "He might be a good player someday, but he is not ready."
    Indeed, Yao is not ready to dominate despite last night's 30 points against Dallas. If he never does, he will join a long list of extremely tall players — from Manute Bol (7-7) to Gheorghe Muresan (7-7) to Bradley (7-6) to Priest Lauderdale (7-4) — whose performances never matched their height.
    But unlike those players, much is expected of Yao, at whom the Wizards will get their first look tonight when they visit Houston. Yao is not a shot-blocking former shepherd from the Sudan like Bol. Nor is he a giant toothpick once viewed as potentially having a huge NBA upside, as Bradley was at Brigham Young because, among other things, he excelled at baseball and golf while in high school.
    Considering the NBA's present infatuation with foreign players, the stakes are highest with Yao, a star on the international circuit. In his last season with the Shanghai Sharks of the China Basketball Association, Yao averaged a career-high 32.4 points (with a shooting percentage of .721 from the floor), plus 19.0 rebounds and 4.8 blocked shots.
    But he is still somewhat of a mystery, because, despite his homeland numbers, there have been times in his rookie season when he has seemed light years away from the franchise player Houston hopes he will become.
    Although the 296-pound Yao, then just 20, averaged 10.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocks in the 2000 Olympics, Alonzo Mourning, a member of the gold medal-winning American team, thought Wang Zhizhi was China's best player. And Wang has been marginal at best in the NBA. In his third year in the league, Wang was released by the Dallas Mavericks last summer and has appeared in five games with the Los Angeles Clippers.
    Yao also didn't inspire any comparisons to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar when he was held scoreless in his NBA debut. Against the Los Angeles Lakers without Shaquille O'Neal, he was 9-for-9 from the floor, scored 20 points, and grabbed six rebounds.
    However, Lakers coach Phil Jackson didn't want anyone to get the wrong idea about where Yao is on the learning curve.
    Asked how Yao might have fared against O'Neal, the league's most dominant force, Jackson replied, "[O´Neal would] break him in two. It wouldn't be fair for this kid to go against Shaquille, who's such a dramatic force, such a dynamic amount of energy."
    Despite Yao's inconsistency, some insight into how much teams factor Yao into their game plan reveals where he is right now as a player.
    "I've heard the hype, but I don't know much about him other than what I've read," Wizards forward Jerry Stackhouse said. "With [the Rockets], your concerns begin with [Steve] Francis and Cuttino [Mobley]" — two Houston guards who are more than a foot shorter than Yao.
    Wizards coach Doug Collins was the top pick by the Philadelphia 76ers 29 years ago, joining a team that had won a record-low nine games the season before. Collins said that there is no comparison between the scrutiny he faced and what Yao will encounter.
    "I got a phone call," Collins said, telling how the league notified him of his selection out of Illinois State. "I hadn't even been on national television yet. With this young man everything he's done has been scrutinized — his every step chatted about on the Internet. People know about him. He's had some rough times, but as he learns the game he'll get better. Where he'll wind up I have no idea."
    Barkley, on the other hand, does not want to hear anything about Yao, who spent four years playing for the Chinese national team, needing more time.
    "Learn the game?" said Barkley, who was a 21-year-old rookie with Philadelphia in 1984. "He has been playing the game all these years. You know what he said when he got over here? 'Whoa! These brothers are different over here.' He's never seen a brother in China. They are big and strong and they run and jump. Whoa! Even white guys can play over here.' The black guys and white guys — they aren't like those China guys, they're a little bit different over here."
    But Yao will be given every opportunity to succeed in the NBA if for no other reason than his success will open an entirely new market to the league, which now has an office in Beijing. Thirty Rockets games will be televised in China. When Yao made his regular-season debut, the game was available to 287million homes in China. Compare that with the 106.6million TV households in the United States.
    But in order for the marketing campaign to succeed, Yao can't become the next Chuck Nevitt.
    "There's a lot riding on him becoming a real basketball player, perhaps even a star," Collins said.
  2. aries323

    aries323 Member

    Oct 8, 2002
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    The writers all over the country find ways to hate on Yao. Let Yao play and prove them wrong. He's special. Everyone that knows the game can see him and know that he's a special player. So screw everyone who don't give the man proper credit. They are probably just mad cause we've got him, and they are stuck with Haywood and JahidiWhite. HAHAHAHA

    GO YAO!!! Lead us to the Playoffs!!!
  3. pippendagimp

    pippendagimp Member

    Sep 1, 2000
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    They're just still bitter about their Kwame Brown #1 selection ;)
  4. lavarock

    lavarock Contributing Member

    Nov 22, 2002
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    I feel funny that they worshiped Barkley's word without saying any hint of the a$$ situation. It's indeed Yao that made Charles look so humliated and stupid tonite.
    I like Charles, but Washington Post, dont' make the same mistake he did or you will regret yourself very bad:)
  5. RIET

    RIET Contributing Member

    May 20, 2002
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    God, it's the equivalent of Fox News.
  6. rezdawg

    rezdawg Contributing Member

    Feb 15, 2000
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    Yeah, its too bad our #1 selection is already better than theirs, 10 games into the season. HAHAHA!!
  7. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
    Supporting Member

    Mar 28, 2002
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    Bah! :rolleyes:

    I always read the Post.
  8. michecon

    michecon Contributing Member

    May 19, 2002
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    That's exactly my feeling. It's like they pull all the info and things said about Yao Ming and filtered all the positive things, and put hte rest of the crap together on paper, incredible.
  9. PSU

    PSU Member

    Jul 23, 2002
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    THIS IS THE WASHINGTON TIMES! Not the Washington Post. BIG DIFFERENCE!!! They are runned by a bunch of of little John Ashcrofts.

    Also, like how they said Dallas released Wang? Oh yeah, what an accurate description.
  10. chievous minniefield

    chievous minniefield Contributing Member

    Jul 6, 2001
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    this article was clearly written before last night's game.

    the poor writer, at the last minute, had to go in and try to find a way to mention the following facts:

    Yao Ming, 30 points, 16 rebounds, 2 blocks
    Shawn Bradley, 20 minutes, 0 points, 2 rebounds, 5 fouls

    . . . and somehow still include Barkley's quote, "Yao Ming makes Shawn Bradley look like Bill Russell."

    this article was written monday or tuesday. knucklehead.
  11. Rocket Addict

    Rocket Addict Contributing Member

    Jan 7, 2001
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    The Washington Times isn't a real newspaper. They have their slant and they run with it. I can hear the newsroom conversation now...

    Editor..."Um, the wire says Yao Ming scored 30 points tonight. Doesn't that defeat the entire premise of this article."

    Reporter: "Well, it isn't exactly accurate, but it's too late to change now..."

    Editor: "Alright, we'll just run with it and add in that he scored 30. Maybe people won't notice. After all, it works for the news desk all the time."

  12. wizard

    wizard Member

    Oct 14, 1999
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    Yeah its pretty damn annoying to read these kinda articles from other cities. The article made his 30 pt night last night seem futile. It's all good though. It makes watching Yao all that more exciting especially when he makes yet another contribution in the stat category and the win column.

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