Okay, we got Yao into the All-Star Game. He deserved it. Period. There is not a better center in the Western Conference, and unless you're Dwight Howard, you don't have a case at all.
So what do we want to see from Yao tonight?
Long answer: let him have some fun and kid around and shoot as many 3-pointers as he wants.
Short answer: Nothing.
I'm glad he's starting. It's great, but I want him to have a firm seat on the bench, just like last year.
You might think I would want this to avoid injury, and that's partly true, but I honestly don't believe you can get injured in the All-Star Game. No one guards you, At the end of the day, though, it's all about the rest.
Remember, this is the Yao Ming who had a stress fracture in his foot right around this time last year. He then had surgery and rehabbed like crazy in order to get ready to train with China to be ready for the Olympics in Beijing. There, he pretty much had to carry the workload for that team.
Compounding the issue is the ultra-short offseason Yao had to endure. With the Olympics ending in late August, Yao had to rush to Houston and start training with the Rockets. He started off a little rusty, but is now doing everything in his power to keep the Rockets relevant in the Western Conference playoff picture.
Imagine how much time this guy has had off. In the real world, we get weekends off, and summers when you're a kid. True, basketball players have days off in between games (unless you're the Rockets, then you get four games in five nights constantly), but most of that time is spent working out and practicing. Add that the Rockets' hectic first half schedule, and you'll realize that Yao Ming may be the most exhausted basketball player on the planet. And he's still playing this good. Unbelievable.
So although I would love to see Yao go 30/10/5 tonight, but on the other hand, I truly hope Violet Palmer is reffing the game. God, I can't believe I just said that, but five quick fouls in the first five minutes wouldn't bother me any.
And I don't think Yao would mind, either.