Why do I/we undervalue Yao?

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Rileydog, Jan 22, 2008.

  1. Rileydog

    Rileydog Contributing Member

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    Why is 30 and 17 not enough (from Yao)??

    Going home from the Sonics game, I noticed that I was frustrated with Yao. I had to check myself; the dude put up 30 and 17. But I couldn't help but feel somewhat frustrated that he didn't play better. I kept thinking about him turning the ball over in the post, or being denied post entry, or wishing that he'd elbow someone, anyone.

    I am starting to believe that Yao just can't win with us fans, the media or refs. He's the biggest guy on the court, and nothing he does is good enough. I'm guilty of this. Yao's got a great shooting touch. Yawn, wonderful. He is a great teammate. Sigh, that's nice. Yao is unselfish with the ball. Great, but can't he be more assertive . . . (and so on).

    I've always thought of Yao as a bigger, but less athletic Mr. Fundamental, Tim Duncan. I think Tim Duncan is one of the 5-8 most valuable players in the league, and don't think poorly of him at all. In fact, for some reason, I think Tim is a better player than Yao, and would likely trade Yao for Duncan (well, maybe not, but I'd think hard about it).

    But let's look at their performance this year.

    Yao vs Duncan
    PPG: 22.3 vs 18.8
    RPG: 10.7 vs 11
    BPG: 2.34 vs 1.86
    Asst: 2.4 vs 3
    FG%: .505 vs .505
    FT%: 85% vs 68%
    TO: 3.4 vs 2.5

    Yao gets the benefit of 3-4 more mins per game, but based on the numbers, Duncan isn't much better a player, is he? But I sometimes think that Duncan is superior, significantly so.

    (parenthetical 1: some folks get so frustrated with Yao that they feel he is not a max contract player, or that he is just barely above average)

    (parenthetical 2: As I type this, I think there's only one pivot player I'd trade Yao for, and that's Dwight Howard.)

    Bottom line: Yao is the biggest guy on the court. What this all boils down to is that folks want Yao to be Shaq. We want him to dunk, be more athletic, more physical, hard to front . . . and oh by the way, please keep the soft shooting stroke, outstanding freethrows, and keep being a good guy off the court. I'd say I'm being crazy here but I think there's truth to this. I'm basically asking the guy to be the best big man in the history of the game, and if he's not, I figure out a way to be disappointed with 30 and 17.

    This started out as a open ended rambling about my thoughts post Sonics game. But I think I'm onto something here about people's expectations and attitude towards Yao.

    I think my new year's resolution might be to appreciate Yao a little more.
     
    #1 Rileydog, Jan 22, 2008
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2008
  2. t_mac1

    t_mac1 Contributing Member

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    i think that's the case (which really shouldn't be) is b/c of the center position in general and how that position (which was the cream of the crop in the 90s) is now the worst position of all 5.

    the best positions are the SG/SFs (kobe, mac, james, wade, melo...) & PFs (kg, duncan, amare, dirk...) and now the emerging PGs (nash, paul, deron...).

    i mean, yao is now the only LEGIT great center and if you look around the league, there's no other true great center to compete with him. therefore, people expect him to dominate EVERY night w/ #s like 29-30 pts and 14-15 rebounds.

    if he was playing v. the ewings, robinsons, prime shaqs, hakeems..., i think his value would be much higher.

    it's just the state of the center position right now. it's really bad.
     
  3. meh

    meh Contributing Member

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    I do agree with the general sentiment. Although usually I'm just frustrated at the refs and our general inability at times to take advantage of opponents focusing on Yao.

    But let's not get carried away here with the Duncan comparison. Yes, raw stats states that Yao is better than Duncan. But this doesn't take into account that Duncan is a superior defender(although he is slowing down) or that Duncan is a master at moving without the ball, hence more flexibility for the Spurs offense. It's for the same reason I feel Yao's better than Dwight Howard, even if raw stats say otherwise.
     
  4. DaDakota

    DaDakota Contributing Member

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    He is great....we are lucky he is a Houston Rocket.

    DD
     
  5. Bustnani

    Bustnani Member

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    It's all about playoff success, Yao does things well, but nothing great. Tmac atleast has shown to be a great offensive player, but if these two continue to be 2nd round virgins, they will always be looked as underachievers.
     
  6. t_mac1

    t_mac1 Contributing Member

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    i think yao scores "great" for the most part in the reg. season v. most teams (though he can be slowed down w/ the fronting for some teams), but he hasn't proved he can be unstoppable in the playoffs like tmac has for the most part.
     
  7. Dave_78

    Dave_78 Member

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    First, Duncan IS a significantly better player. Then again, he is significantly better than 99+% of the guys to ever play in this league. He is probably the top PF of all time and without a doubt a top 25 player of all time.

    Second, I think many of us remember what Hakeem did. Of course, we know that Yao can never do what Hakeem could do (who can?) but that doesn't stop a part of us from comparing them. It's human nature. We should also consider that Yao is forced to play with rules made to neutralize his strengths. Hakeem never had to do that.

    Third, I think many of us forget that along with Yao's amazing physical gifts come some real physical limitations. With the great size also comes the inability to keep up with the freak athletes that play as "big men" in this league.
     
  8. Dave_78

    Dave_78 Member

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    I forgot to mention this but I completely agree.
     
  9. Nitro1118

    Nitro1118 Member

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    I agree, it is VERY easy to undervalue him. It is mostly because he is VERY consistent, and he won't open your eyes like T-Mac will with a 40pt game here and there. Not to mention people still expect his to tbe the MDE because of his height, but that is simply unreasonable to expect. It also doesn't help dwight has broken out this year, leaving Yao unfairly left out of conversation nationally.
     
  10. ekim

    ekim Member

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    YOFs can come up with all the excuses in the world but Yao is at least partly responsible for the team's 2 early playoffs exit. I don't need Yao to dunk every shot attempts but I fully expect him to carry the team past first round.

    And please stop comparing Yao to Duncan. Yao haven't done anything yet... no championship, no MVP, and still a first round virgin.
     
  11. irlu

    irlu Member

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    totally agree with you. if the MM duo can win two titles or even one, people will absolutely change their opinions :D
     
  12. Hydhypedplaya

    Hydhypedplaya Member

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    I think it has more to do with the fact that he cant really create his own shot. Every time he puts the ball on the floor its an automatic turnover. I mean if we take the Tim Duncan comparison then you will see that he can put the ball on the floor and score. Yao needs others to basically set the whole play up for him. While on the other hand dwight can't really put the ball on the floor either, but his raw freakish athleticism makes up for him not being able to really create his own shot.
     
  13. durvasa

    durvasa Contributing Member

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    You know, the same thoughts have crossed my mind lately. I have to admit, while watching the games I'll yell out in anger when Yao turns it over, or is slow to a loose ball, or doesn't come out to contest a jumper. I'm pretty harsh with him. And at the same time, I think I tend to look past a lot of the very good things he does. Unfortunately, with him his weaknesses tend to stand out, while his strengths appear unimpressive due to his size. He's been a rock for this franchise for years, and I think I should be a little more appreciate of that.
     
  14. deion_se

    deion_se Member

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    It is all about his teamates and the coach as well. Just look at D-Wade, KG and even Kobe. Yeah we have another superstar in houston, but is Mac having a strong will and healthy body? yes Mac won the score champ twice but he is also a proved playoff loser, at least so far. Other then the two guys houston might have the worst supporting cast in the whole league, not mention the injures we had been going through.

    Didn't Jordan win his first title at his 7th season when he finally got some quality players around him? Yao Ming is definitely not a Jordan type player but to give him his due, the failure of the team is not on him. You can never put all your hope on a single person, because the game takes five.
     
  15. JayLau910

    JayLau910 Member

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    some players you just expect more out of or have a double standard with.

    take for instance everyone's most favorited love/hate player: steve francis. everyone knows about his positives but every time steve francis turns the ball over, people go crazy. I've been a big stevie supporter since he got here but I find myself cringing everytime he turns the ball over or misses a shot. I don't even know why. And I guess it's somewhat the same with Yao. You want certain players (likely those you really like) to do really well and if they make mistakes, it disappoints you. don't know if that makes any sense.
     
  16. v3.0

    v3.0 Contributing Member

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    Present day NBA = revolves around speed, athleticism, star perimeter players

    I think the main reason we undervalue Yao is because his game/weaknesses stick out like a sore thumb in today's game. That and, not to use an overused excuse, he (and Tmac) haven't taken us deep into the playoffs.

    At least Kevin Garnett can say he never had anyone when he got kicked out of the first round perennially, we have 2 superstars that have to say that.
     
  17. t_mac1

    t_mac1 Contributing Member

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    tmac was only a superstar from his orlando days + 04-05 (he hasn't really been a superstar for an ENTIRE season ever since)

    yao has never been a true superstar since he has never had to carry a team by himself--only stretches during the reg. season.

    so in the past 3 yrs, this team has 2 all-stars, not superstars.
     
  18. Blurr#7

    Blurr#7 Contributing Member

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    Hmm Doesn't sound like a YOF to me, he made some great points Yao is very undervalued. We're constanly complaining about what he can't do but overlook the things he does great. And if you fully expect him and him alone to carry the whole team past the first round then you may need to brush up on your Basketball knowledge. The Only pivot man who I saw carry a team was Dream and even he had great play from his supporting players.
     
  19. Deckard

    Deckard Contributing Member

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    I think the big fella is terrific. As long as he can stay healthy and playing at this level, or even improving, we're going to be contenders for a playoff spot and hopefully more. What Yao needs is a good/better than good point guard that can give an excellent entry pass and not jack up 17 shots when (duh!) he should be setting up his teammates.
     
  20. weslinder

    weslinder Contributing Member

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    Great post, great observations. It was really nice to read, and I find myself doing the same thing.

    Five star thread!
     
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