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Rockets to put 25 minute a game cap on Yao Ming

Sep 15, 2010, 9:21 AM EDT

Thumbnail image for Yao_workout.jpgRockets GM Daryl Morey wasn’t kidding when he suggested he wanted to keep Yao Ming’s minutes down this season.

Well, it wasn’t a suggestion either, as he told Fran Blinebury at NBA.com.

“It’s going to be hard for everybody,” Morey said. “We have talked in the past about trying to keep Yao’s minutes down over the course of the regular season, but this time it’s not a suggestion or a wish. It’s mandatory. There will be a minutes cap. We will have to pull him out. It is not an option.

“Yao being Yao, he’s not going to want to come out. We all know that. But this is the way it’s going to be. When he’s in a game and he hits his minutes limit, it’s going to be like a baseball pitcher on a pitch count. It won’t be a judgment call anywhere. He comes out and we go on.”

Look for the Rockets to take other steps as well, such as Yao not playing in the second half of back-to-backs and him having some practices off.

Yao missed all of last season following foot surgery where pins were put in to hold the bone in place.  They need him back — with him they are a trendy dark horse pick to knock the Lakers off their perch in the West. Without him they will struggle to make the playoffs. So better to err on the side of caution, don’t you think?

  1. Seth - Sep 15, 2010 at 10:51 AM

    Totall agree. Look at the injury list from last season, big guys are the foundation and the most volnerable player of the whole team — Perkins, Bynum, Oden, Przybilla, Yao, etc.
    Who cares about regular season games? We need a healthy Yao in the playoff.

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