58 Facts About Yao Ming


Yao Ming is a Chinese basketball executive and former professional player.


Yao Ming played for the Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association and the Houston Rockets of the National Basketball Association.


Yao Ming, who was born in Shanghai, started playing for the Sharks as a teenager, and played on their senior team for five years in the CBA, winning a championship in his final year.


Yao Ming reached the NBA playoffs four times, and the Rockets won the first-round series in the 2009 postseason, their first playoff series victory since 1997.


In July 2011, Yao Ming announced his retirement from professional basketball because of a series of foot and ankle injuries which forced him to miss 250 games in his last six seasons.


Yao Ming is one of China's best-known athletes, with sponsorships with several major companies.


In February 2017, Yao Ming was unanimously elected as chairman of the Chinese Basketball Association.


Yao Ming is the only child of 6-foot-7-inch Yao Ming Zhiyuan and 6-foot-3-inch Fang Fengdi, both of whom were former professional basketball players.


At 11 pounds, Yao Ming weighed more than twice as much as the average Chinese newborn.


When Yao Ming was nine years old, he began playing basketball and attended a junior sports school.


Yao Ming first tried out for the Shanghai Sharks junior team of the Chinese Basketball Association when he was 13 years old, and practiced ten hours a day for his acceptance.


When Yao Ming decided to enter the 2002 NBA draft, a group of advisers was formed that came to be known as "Team Yao Ming".


Yao Ming was widely predicted to be picked number one overall.


Shortly after Wang Zhizhi refused to return to China to play for the national team and was banned from playing for China, the CBA stipulated that Yao Ming would have to return to play for the national team.


Yao Ming did not participate in the Rockets' pre-season training camp, instead playing for China in the 2002 FIBA World Championships.


Yao Ming played his first NBA game against the Indiana Pacers, scoring no points and grabbing two rebounds, and scored his first NBA basket against the Denver Nuggets.


Yao Ming was not angry with the promotion because he was not familiar with American stereotypes of Chinese.


Yao Ming said he believed O'Neal was joking, but he said a lot of Asians would not see the humor.


Yao Ming received nearly a quarter million more votes than O'Neal, and he became the first rookie to start in the All-Star Game since Grant Hill in 1995.


Yao Ming was voted the Sporting News Rookie of the Year, and won the Laureus Newcomer of the Year award.


Yao Ming was voted to be the starting center for the Western Conference in the 2004 NBA All-Star Game for the second straight year.


Yao Ming finished the season averaging 17.5 points and 9.0 rebounds a game.


Yao Ming averaged 15.0 points and 7.4 rebounds in his first playoff series.


Early into his fifth season, Yao Ming was injured again, this time breaking his right knee on December 23,2006, while attempting to block a shot.


On November 9,2007, Yao Ming played against fellow Chinese NBA and Milwaukee Bucks player Yi Jianlian for the first time.


Yao Ming missed the 2008 NBA playoffs, but he did not miss the 2008 Summer Olympics at Beijing, China in August.


However, the Rockets lost their next two games, and Yao Ming was diagnosed with a sprained ankle after Game 3.


In reaction, Yao Ming said the injury, which did not require surgery, was "better than last year".


In July 2009, Yao Ming discussed the injury with his doctors, and the Rockets applied for a disabled player exception, an exception to the NBA salary cap which grants the injured player's team money to sign a free agent.


On December 16,2010, it was announced that Yao Ming had developed a stress fracture in his left ankle, related to an older injury, and would miss the rest of the season.


On July 20,2011, Yao Ming announced his retirement from basketball in a press conference in Shanghai.


Yao Ming cited injuries to his foot and ankle, including the third fracture to his left foot sustained near the end of 2010.


Yao Ming was nominated by a member of the Chinese media for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame as a contributor to the game.


Yao Ming would have been eligible for induction as early as 2012, but Yao felt it was too soon and requested that the Hall of Fame delay consideration of the nomination.


On September 9,2016, Yao Ming was inducted into the Hall of Fame along with 4-time NBA champion Shaquille O'Neal and Allen Iverson.


Yao Ming then vowed to abstain from shaving his beard for half a year unless the Chinese national team made it into the quarter-finals of the 2004 Olympics.


Yao Ming led the Chinese national team to three consecutive FIBA Asia Cup gold medals, winning the 2001 FIBA Asian Championship, the 2003 FIBA Asian Championship, and the 2005 FIBA Asian Championship.


Yao Ming was named the MVP of all three tournaments.


Yao Ming carried the Chinese flag and led his country's delegation during the opening ceremony.


Yao Ming scored the first basket of the game, a three-pointer, in China's opening 2008 Olympics Basketball Tournament game against the eventual gold medal-winning United States.


Yao Ming met Chinese female basketball player Ye Li when he was 17 years old.


On May 21,2010, the couple's daughter Yao Ming Qinlei was born in Houston, Texas.


In 2004, Yao Ming co-wrote an autobiography with ESPN sportswriter Ric Bucher, entitled Yao Ming: A Life in Two Worlds.


In 2009, Yao Ming provided the voice for a character of a Chinese animated film, The Magic Aster, released on June 19.


Yao Ming took a tailored degree program with mostly one-on-one lectures to avoid being a distraction on campus.


Yao Ming completed his studies in July 2018, graduating with a degree in economics after 7 years of study.


Yao Ming is one of China's most recognizable athletes, along with Liu Xiang.


Yao Ming was signed by Nike until the end of his rookie season.


Yao Ming had a deal with Pepsi, and he successfully sued Coca-Cola in 2003 when they used his image on their bottles while promoting the national team.


Yao Ming eventually signed with Coca-Cola for the 2008 Olympics.


On July 16,2009, Yao Ming bought his former club team, the Shanghai Sharks, which were on the verge of not being able to play the next season of the Chinese Basketball Association because of financial troubles.


Yao Ming has participated in many charity events during his career, including the NBA's Basketball Without Borders program.


Yao Ming was joined by fellow NBA stars Steve Nash, Carmelo Anthony, and Baron Davis, and Hong Kong actor Jackie Chan.


Yao Ming serves as Global Ambassador and member of the International Board of Directors.


Yao Ming partnered with WildAid to appear in commercials and documentaries to educate citizens on the harmful effects of shark fin soup on shark species.


Yao Ming has filmed a number of public service announcements for elephant and rhino conservation for the "Say No" campaign with partners African Wildlife Foundation and WildAid.


On March 3,2013, Yao Ming attended the First Session of the 12th Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference as one of its 2,200 members.


Yao Ming was a member of the CPPCC from 2013 to 2018.