Rockets Rumors: Yao Doubtful For Asian Championships

Keeping in touch with who the Rockets will be targeting in free agency, the draft, and in trades.

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Rockets Rumors: Yao Ming Likely Will Not Play In Asian Championships

In news from the "duh" file, Rockets center Yao Ming is very doubtful to play in the Asian Championships this year per his teammate Liu Wei. The Chinese Basketball Association did place him on China's roster for the event, but that in no way guarantees anything. 

"He will stay in Shanghai for a while and then go back to the States for an injury check. Nobody knows if he will be able to play until the results come out," Liu told China Daily while appearing at a clinic organized in Beijing by his sponsor, Nike, to instruct a media basketball team.

Who knows how healthy Yao would've been able to stay with a little less time working for China's national team, but that was a risk that the Rockets knew they had to take when they drafted him. It would be shocking if Yao were to play in this event given the relative prestige of it as compared to his last shot to save his NBA career.

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Rockets Rumors: Nene Likely To Opt Out Of Contract

The Rockets search for a center is a lot like Bart Simpson's search for a soul. They need a center. Any center. Your center!

Well, some good news came down the pipeline in that regard as it looks likely that Nuggets center Nene Hilario will opt out of his contract whenever he is actually allowed to do so.

"If I play happy, if I enjoy the game, my game improves," Nene said. "I did my best for the team, for the city. I tried to do my best for the fans. But the (Nuggets) need to understand you need to see the return on the other side, or you need to look for it. You need to look for it sometimes."

"They don't realize all of the sacrifices I made. When you don't feel appreciated, it's hard."

The Rockets will surely appreciate you, Nene. In fact, should the league rules allow it, I bet their offer to you as a free agent would be downright Hilario! (Hits myself for making that joke.)

Houston's search for centers is likely to begin with Grizzlies free agent center Marc Gasol, but since he is a restricted free agent, Nene might be the more attainable target. Besides, Houston should only employ centers that go by one name from now on. It's a sustainable tradition.

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