Chinese Basketball Fans to Stop Watching if Yao Ming Retires
An online poll suggests that NBA basketball fans in China will no longer watch the games once Yao Ming retires, potentially diminishing the NBA’s popularity in China. Yao is expected to announce any news on his retirement at a news conference on July 20.
Yao boosted the popularity of the league in China and throughout Aisa. Sales from merchandising and TV ratings of the games went to the roof when the Houston Rockets made Yao the top draft pick in 2002.
Yao was also considered one of the most influential people in China, especially for those born in the 1980’s. Sports analyts are saying that it will be quite some time before the sports industry will see another Yao Ming. Yao has been praised for being a role model for kids in China that learned to love the game of basketball, he taught them how a real professional basketball player should act.
Yao also strenghten the image of the Country when he carried the Chinese flag during the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Some people said that they feel sad to learn that Yao might retire from basketball, but they will still support him since a lot of them still idolize him.
Some have been saying that Yao’s retirement brings an end to a great era in Chinease basketball with the potential that they might not see him in the 2012 London Olympics.