Yao Ming is China’s most recognizable athlete, so you’d think that everyone associated with athletics in that sports-mad country would do their best to keep him happy.
Apparently, the coach of China’s national basketball team didn’t get the memo, because he benched Ming for much of his team’s 14-point loss to Greece on Monday. Yao was not amused.
From China Daily:
[Jonas] Kazlauskas acknowledged that Yao was unhappy with the decision, saying the Houston Rocket star would have played more if China had a chance of winning, but after falling behind by 24 points in the first half that opportunity was lost.
“If we should be able … to play close from the beginning, for sure Yao Ming should play a longer time, but there was no reason to keep him on the court,” Kazlauskas said.
Yao did not speak to reporters following the game, but his facial expression told the whole story.
A bit of unsolicited advice, coach: Find a good place to hide.