Friday, August 31, 2007

Fists of Fury: Yi, the Milwaukee Tourism & Travel Board Welcomes You

Holy shit, Yi finally did it. Milwauke got the big Chinaman signed, or China "teen" and all they had to do was go to China--who'd have figured? This took so long we didn't even care when it happened.

So it was about guaranteed p/t all this time... are you kidding me? Not big huge paper bucks. Because, like Wang Zhi Zhi should have proved, China ain't watching if you get scrub minutes. Abbott at TrueHoop has Hollinger's assessment of Yi. And one thing he's absolutely right about, is that sixth pick curse. Hopefully, Brandon Roy, broke it, but that's a lot of wishful thinking on our part. The forecast is dark, Yi... may the force be with you.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

KJ Choi Won't Duck Your English Questions

This has little to do with basketball other than invoking the whole Shaq-Yao imitating the Chinese language thing, but blogger, Chris Baldwin, makes a nice point on behalf of English as a second language speakers all over the U.S. in criticizing those in the media who have been recently mocking Korean K.J. Choi's English skills. Baldwin writes:
Choi came to the U.S. late in his life, learned the language while trying to make a living in pro golf and make sure his family adjusted to a new country. Unlike many foreign athletes who know English perfectly and still hide behind an interpreter because it's easier to dodge media questions that way - see Ichiro and for years Yao Ming - Choi will do interviews in English. Which gives the fans much more truthful answers and a much better feel for the real guy behind the golfer.

And Choi speaks fine English. He's engaging and insightful - see his story on using that $49 infomercial putter grip in Tour competition. He's actually one of the better interviews on Tour. He even tells a good joke.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Got Old Kicks?

Scoop Jackson has a Page 2 post over at ESPN about modern day heroes. It's an inspiring piece no doubt, as it sets out to be, and he mentions Bobbito and his affiliation with Hoops-4-Hope. He's got a basketball court in Zimbabwe named after him... for good reason. But this also ties into a recent fund-raiser I attended for H4H hosted by the Brian Yang and the Dream League, which came about because, Marshall Cho, one of our friends and former player in both the Dream League and our own Fastbreak NYC, has been out in Africa working with H4H since August of last year.

Bobbito actually had mentioned H4H to me awhile back during some pickup, but for some reason, I didn't put together that it was the same program Marshall had been working with until the fundraiser. Anyway, we've been trying to get more involved with the program. I also like Books-4-Hoops program in IL that Scoop mentions. We'll look into that. At any rate, the fundraiser seem to go off well. Dropped a donation for Fastbreak NYC and Marshall even personally e-mailed a thank you.

It's a great cause, to say the least. Here's the link to the website. If you got some old kicks, or if you sneaker heads just think them shits is out of style, you could get a kid playin' ball out there that would otherwise be hoofing on bare feet. Ship them kicks.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Nothing says love and devotion like a new set of rims

Nothing says love and devotion like a new set of rims
from Yao Central

Shaq is on tour in China, and his is well-documented, so naturally, the Chinese news media asked Shaq what he thought about Yao's recent wedding. This is what he had to say to China Daily:
"I've heard the news that Yao has married a beautiful basketball player. If you let me choose a wedding gift for him, I would give Yao four 24-inch customized rims at his wedding ceremony."
Very generous of the Dieze, only China Daily follows up by saying Yao really isn't in to all the customizing that, "a number of NBA stars are crazy about." The only thing Yao has customized on his BMW 7-series is Y&Y logo on the rear that stands for Yao and Ye Li. That's right... awwwwww. Adorable.

Shaq goes on to talk about Yao, newcomer Yi Jianlian and Chinese basketball. And you'll notice the increased diplomacy while in the middle of his Li-Ning sponsored tour. When was the last time Shaq gave an untested rookie like Yi any love at all? Scary what a shoe contract and tour of China can do to change minds... or at least, mindsets. Now if only they can get Charles Barkley to sign.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Yao vanquishes fiery spirits at wedding

Yao vanquishes fiery spirits at wedding
from Yao Central

Malaysia's The Star Online accounts
Yao Ming's drinking statistics during his wedding earlier this week in Beijing. Apparently, he and his mates downed six bottles of "a fiery Chinese spirit" called Mao Tai, which I've never heard of (maybe the equivalent of a $6.00 bottle of bad Mexican tequila? That's fiery.).

Apparently, he got a little tipsy, but not drunk, and then hunkered down to bed. Which makes one ask, or at least me, how much "fiery spirit" would it take to get the Big Red One-One off the chain? We Asians are not notorious for our alcoholic tolerance--and a great number of us turn bright red upon touch to the tongue, for one reason or another--but Yao is a big Asian, so... how many licks would it take to get to the center of a drunken Yao? More than six bottles of Mao Tai, more from Wikipedia.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Globes, scepters and very tall Chinese

Globes, scepters and very tall Chinese
from Yao Central

Call it naivete, but there's only two really good reasons to get married. There's that whole expression of your undying love, faith and devotion stuff, that's great... and there's the swag. Yao Ming Mania has
pics of wedding gifts given by friends and teammates from a Thursday reception in honor of newlyweds Yao and Ye Li.

There's also pics of the guests themselves and they really brought some nice stuff, but who knew that scepters were still in. Fashionable or not, they look wicked. We gotta get some
for our rec. league.

Scepter or elaborate "smoking" paraphernalia... which would you rather have?

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Yao Cuts the Honeymoon Short

Yao back in business
From Yao Central

Barely a day after the wedding, Yao gets back to work doing what a celebrity athlete does, namely making public appearances and smiling for the cameras. Yao Ming Mania has your pics of the big man appearing at the
2008 Olympics one-year countdown celebration in Beijing (Andy Lau and Jackie Chan!) and at a Coca-Cola sponsored event with 110 meter world record-holding hurdler Liu Xiang. Meanwhile, both world-class Chinese athletes are angling to be the one who lights the 2008 opening ceremony's Olympic flame.
• • •

In unnecessary news, the China Daily reports that Yao and Ye Li have no current plans to have a baby. Reuters India quotes Yao:

"Having children...there's no plan at present. I will be concentrating on preparing for the NBA season and next year's Olympics," Yao said in comments published on official media portal on Wednesday.

"To participate in the Olympics in your home country, it's an opportunity I will really cherish," Yao said.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Mazel Tov!

Mazel Tov!
From Yao Central

"China's most eligible bachelor" finally took the plunge with his long-time girlfriend, Ye Li in a three-hour ceremony at the Shangri-La Hotel in Shanghai.

The ceremony stopped short of tabloid fodder, at least here in the 'States, but it's getting covered perhaps in some unexpected ways. has the most romantic: "Minneapolis church service...Iraq bombings...Yao getting hitched...

Pravda Online reports that there were only 100 close relatives attending, with an equal number of security guards working the event. No teammates, coaches or basketball officials were invited to the nuptials

Meanwhile, back in the U.S., Yao's teammates are playing charity softball. Yao Ming Mania has your pics. If you always wanted to see Aaron Brooks singing karaoke, click here.