The big man has a mild sprain in his left ankle and will only be out for a week, according to the Houston Rockets. He will miss the rest of the Rockets’ road trip and return to Houston to begin rehabilitation.
He suffered the injury last night against theWizards when he took a charge from JaVale McGee in the first few minutes of the game. Houston lost 98-91 as Yao missed the rest of the game and Houston fell to 1-6.
The Rockets have been limiting his minutes with the hopes that he will stay healthy the entire season. However, head coach Rick Adelman had mentioned that he planned on increasing his playing time.
Yao missed all of the 2009-10 season after undergoing surgery to repair his broken left foot and has missed a significant amount of playing time during the last five seasons due to injury.
When drafted in 2002 by the Rockets, Yao became the first international player to be selected first overall without having played college basketball in the United States. Subsequently, the diplomatic hassle that Houston had to undergo to acquire him isn’t looking like it was worth the time as he is consistently injured and has yet to win a single playoff series with the Rockets.
With both Yao and Brad Miller out, Houston will have to lean on Chuck Hayes even more in the front court. He has only scored over ten points once with 16 against Golden State and has only pulled down more than ten rebounds with 13 against San Antonio. Luckily, Luis Scola has really stepped up and is playing lights out with nearly 22 points and 11 rebounds a game.
Houston has yet to string together a series of wins and only has one on the season when they beat Minnesota last week 120-94. Right now would be a good time for them to get some wins with games against Indiana, New York and Toronto all in the next week. However, with the Yao out and considering how poorly Houston is playing, don’t expect too many notches in the win column.