We, like many people, started debating whether Yao Ming belonged in the Hall of Fame pretty quickly after he retired. In fact, the Chinese media made a push to get him on the ballot immediately as a contributor, rather than wait the normal five years.
But that's not cool with Yao, and he's making it known.
A representative of former Houston Rockets center Yao Ming informed the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Wednesday that Yao feels it is premature for him to be on the ballot for the Hall of Fame in 2012.
"Yao believes it is inappropriate for him to be considered for induction to the Hall of Fame at this time," said John Huizinga, Yao's agent, in an interview with FOX 26 Sports.
Has Yao ever done anything that makes him less likable? Rather than sit back and get swept up in the wave of emotion that is undoubtedly overtaking the Chinese media and basketball officials, Yao is taking the proper route. If he gets in, I'm sure he will accept the honor with the proper grace and dignity. If he does not get in, he will accept it the same way.
It just makes that "we're missing out" feeling even more overwhelming. We've lost a really good player, and, clearly, an equally good person.