Yao Out for the Season… AGAIN

18 Dec

Yao rehabbing here, now out for the season

by Chris McCoy

Yao Ming is out for the season… again. The Rockets 7’6″ center will miss the remainder of the season due to a stress fracture in his left ankle.

The injury was discovered in a routine exam on Thursday morning. Team physician, Walter Lowe, said that surgery is the norm for such an injury, but surgery will keep Yao out for an additional 10 months.  Yao, who has been out since November 10th, is still consulting doctors to see how he will proceed.

The 7-time All-Star, who sat out all of last season after having reconstructive surgery on his broken left foot, started the season with a plan to come back slowly – limited minutes, only to receive news that his current injury is a little more serious than once thought. Lowe stated that the current injury is related to last year’s injury, but that the reconstructive surgery did not put Yao at greater risk for this stress fracture.

The reconstructive surgery Yao had last year, was to make his foot flatter and help distribute the stresses, so the current news has to be a little hard to swallow.

Lowe told the LA Times, “When you look at the course of Yao’s career, stress fractures have been part of his foot, so to say he’s not at a risk to continue to have stress fractures would be crazy. So he is at a continued risk. The new position of his foot should … make those stresses lower.”

Rockets General Manager, Daryl Morey, is hopeful that Yao will recover and play for the team in the future, despite his latest setback.

“We need to continue to talk to the doctors and see where that goes,” Morey said. “Yao Ming’s an All-Star center and when you look throughout the league there’s not very many of them. So if it looks like there’s a good prognosis here — and we’re still learning how good that prognosis will be — for sure we’re going to look at Yao Ming past this season.”

Morey said Yao is taking the new pretty hard, but apparently not TOO hard, as Yao told ESPN: “I haven’t died,” he said. “Right now I’m drinking a beer and eating fried chicken. What were you expecting, a funeral?” It’s good that Yao can keep his humor in the midst of turmoil. We wish you a speedy recovery.

Yao Ming’s career stats: 19 pts 9.2 reb 1.6 ast 1.9 blk

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