Yao Ming is a retired Chinese professional basketball player who played for the Shanghai Sharks of the Chinese Basketball Association and the Houston Rockets of the National Basketball Association.
The National Basketball Association is the pre-eminent men's professional basketball league in North America, and is widely considered to be the premier men's professional basketball league in the world.
Shanghai is one of the four direct-controlled municipalities of China and the most populous city proper in the world, with a population of more than 24 million as of 2014.
Basketball is a sport, generally played by two teams of five players on a rectangular court.
Yao Ming’s Basketball Hall of Fame Enshrinement Speech by OfficialHoophall
He was selected to start for the Western Conference in the NBA All-Star Game eight times, and was named to the All-NBA Team five times.
The NBA All-Star Game is a basketball exhibition game hosted annually by the National Basketball Association, matching the league's star players from the Eastern Conference against their counterparts from the Western Conference.
The All-NBA Team is an annual National Basketball Association honor bestowed on the best players in the league following every NBA season.
All-star is a term designating an individual as having a high level of performance in their field.
Kobe Bryant VS Yao Ming | Kobe 53, Yao 35 | 12.15.06 by NBA
At the time of his final season, he was the tallest active player in the NBA, at 2.29 m. He is the only player outside of the United States to lead the NBA in All-Star voting.
Yao, who was born in Shanghai, China, started playing for the Shanghai Sharks as a teenager, and played on their senior team for five years in the Chinese Basketball Association, winning a championship in his final year.
After negotiating with the CBA and the Sharks to secure his release, Yao was selected by the Houston Rockets as the first overall pick in the 2002 NBA draft.
The 2002 NBA draft was held on June 26, 2002, at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.
He reached the NBA Playoffs four times, and the Rockets won a first-round series in the 2009 postseason, their first playoff series victory since 1997.
The National Basketball Association playoffs are a best-of-seven elimination tournament among 16 teams in the Eastern Conference and Western Conference, ultimately deciding the league's season champion in the NBA Finals.
In July 2011, Yao 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.
In eight seasons with the Rockets, Yao ranks sixth among franchise leaders in total points and total rebounds, and second in total blocks.
Yao is one of China's best-known athletes, with sponsorships with several major companies.
His rookie year in the NBA was the subject of a documentary film, The Year of the Yao, and he co-wrote, along with NBA analyst Ric Bucher, an autobiography titled Yao: A Life in Two Worlds.
Richard Mathias "Ric" Bucher is a SiriusXM radio host, afternoons on the Mad Dog Sports Radio Channel and Fridays on SiriusXM NBA Radio.
In April 2016, Yao was elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, alongside Shaquille O'Neal and Allen Iverson.
Shaquille Rashaun O'Neal, nicknamed Shaq, is a retired American professional basketball player and former rapper who is currently an analyst on the television program Inside the NBA.
The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame is an American history museum and hall of fame, located at 1000 Hall of Fame Avenue in Springfield, Massachusetts.