Yao Ming went under the knife once again yesterday to repair a serious stress fracture in his left ankle. Ming is currently considering retirement following his rehab from this latest surgery, but hasn’t ruled out returning to an NBA court altogether yet. Yao only played limited minutes over the course of 5 games to open the season for the Houston Rockets before being placed on the injured list by the team…
“I know this will be another long rehab,” the 30-year-old Yao said in a statement. “But I’m looking forward to beginning my recovery. I will use this time to consider all of my options, and will make a decision regarding my career plans as I get closer to the end of my rehab.”
Team doctor Tom Clanton performed the procedure in Houston.
The Rockets drafted Yao with the top overall pick in 2002, but his NBA career has been derailed by a rash of injuries, mostly to his left foot and ankle.
“You hope this is the last surgery for him,” forward Shane Battier(notes) said. “Good lord. That guy’s seen more hospital beds than Florence Nightingale. You feel terrible for him. For being such a big guy and a hard worker, he deserves a break. We hope this surgery is successful and he recovers quickly.”
His contract with Houston expires after this season, and the Rockets are still awaiting word from the league if they’ll be granted a disabled player salary exception for Yao. That would allow Houston to acquire a free agent, or trade for a player without having to match salaries, up to the value of the midlevel exception (about $5.75 million).
Follow the details through the AP on Yahoo.com.