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Old 03-16-2007, 09:14 AM   #1
the outsider
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Default "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

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BEIJING (AFP) - The finals of China's domestic basketball league kicks off this weekend, with red-hot NBA prospect Yi Jianlian and his Guangdong Tigers battling the Bayi Rockets, led by veteran centre Wang Zhizhi.

The seven-foot (2.12-metre) Yi is expected to be a top pick in June's NBA draft and has long been touted as the best player to come out of China since Yao Ming, the All-Star centre for the Houston Rockets.

"This could be my last CBA finals, so I am planning to play my best ever," the 20-year-old power forward ahead of Sunday's opener in Dongguan city, the first game in the best-of-seven series.

Guangdong, the China Basketball Association (CBA) champions for the past three seasons, are the favourites after finishing the season atop the standings with a 26-4 record and steaming through the play-offs.

However, Bayi are the sentimental favourites thanks to Wang, China's first-ever player in the NBA who returned home last year after four seasons in the world's top league.

The 29-year-old has been dominant this season, averaging 27.3 points and 10.2 rebounds a game while leading seven-time CBA champions Bayi to a second place finish behind Guangdong with a 25-5 record.

The seven-foot veteran centre, once banned for refusing to play for the national side, was also pivotal in helping China advance to the second round of last year's world championships and win the Asian Games title in December.

Wang, along with Yao and Yi, are expected to anchor China's Olympic team at next year's Summer Games in Beijing.

"I have played against Big Wang many times so I know what kind of player he is," Yao told the biweekly Basketball Pioneers paper in an interview this week.

"He is the kind of player that if he starts feeling comfortable on the floor, then it will be real hard for any one player to stop him."

During the finals, that one player is likely to be Yi, but he will also have help from American import Jason Dixon.

The 34-year-old centre is the longest serving foreign player in the Chinese league and has been key to Guangdong's three consecutive CBA titles.

Bayi, which is run by the Chinese military, does not employ foreign players.

However, the side boasts four national team players including veteran sharp-shooters Li Nan, Mo Ke and Zhang Jingsong. Guangdong has five players on the national team.

The two teams are meeting for the fourth time in the CBA finals, with Guangdong posting a 4-1 win in last year's series.

Meanwhile much of the focus remains on Yi, who has impressed several NBA general managers, including Mitch Kupchak of the Los Angeles Lakers and Danny Ainge of the Boston Celtics, who both visited China recently to watch him play.

During the CBA regular season, Yi showed quickness, strength and a good outside shot in averaging 25.5 points and 11.8 rebounds a game.

"Americans like to look at the numbers, so if Yi can have a finals game like I had in 2002 when I hit all of my 21 shots, then he could move up to be the number one overall pick in the NBA draft," Yao said.






guy looks to be the next dirk!

Last edited by the outsider : 03-16-2007 at 09:47 AM. Reason: add on
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Old 03-16-2007, 09:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Hes not going to be the number pick, from what Ive seen the dude is nice, but nobody is foolish enough to draft him above Durant or Oden, I could however, see a possibility in which he was selected above Joakim Noah or Al Horford, its doubtful but depending on his performance its possible. Right now though, this is my top 10
1. Oden
2. Durant
3. Jianlian
4. Green
5. Young
6. Horford
7. J. Wright
8. B. Wright
9. Thabeet
10. Noah


...not saying thats the order or anything, but thats my Mel Kiper -esque board
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Old 03-16-2007, 09:55 AM   #3
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

So the Bobcats are getting him
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Old 03-16-2007, 09:59 AM   #4
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

I have a feeling that the fact this guy is Chinese will make him a higher pick than if he were not (the risk-reward ratio on a chinese player becoming a star is huge, by that I mean that if this guy turns out to be a star player, it means massive potential in the chinese market for whoever drafts him
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Old 03-16-2007, 10:02 AM   #5
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Yi will be a top 5 pick. Oden will be #1 pick.

Yi has a nice fadeaway.
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Old 03-16-2007, 10:08 AM   #6
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Quote:
Originally Posted by the outsider


guy looks to be the next dirk!

Next Dirk? No way, Yi can shoot, but not like Dirk. A better comparision would be Kevin Garnett. Both are extremely athletic, thin 7 footers who can run the floor, shoot the midrange and own a couple of post moves.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:23 PM   #7
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

I love how everyone from overseas is the next Dirk for the most part.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:26 PM   #8
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

[bad taste post erased]



so they say he is a Chinese KG? that'll be something. I've always heard reports of very athletic basketball players in China who are just not old enough to showcase their skill to the world yet. hopefully this guy is the first.

Last edited by VCDrivesAPorscheToWork : 03-16-2007 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:31 PM   #9
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Quote:
Originally Posted by VCDrivesAPorscheToWork
i dont mean to imply anything negative but...


well I'm assuming since this dude is tall he shouldn't have this problem but...




who knows...



anyway, the question is:



wouldn't he be made fun of and become bashful when he is in the shower with his teammates?
You're an ass.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:36 PM   #10
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

well sorry, I didnt mean anything harmful by it. just wondering.



edit: you know what? that was in bad taste. i was a jerk. sorry about it folks. i take it down now.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:37 PM   #11
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

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Old 03-16-2007, 01:39 PM   #12
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

It's already quoted, shouldn't have bothered taking it down.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:40 PM   #13
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Quote:
Originally Posted by funkylikemonkey
It's already quoted, shouldn't have bothered taking it down.



yeah I know people can read it. but it's the action that counts you know? like, actually doing it, though it won't make a difference, means more than leaving it up and saying something.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:43 PM   #14
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Come on guys. This guy is averaging 25 and 11 is the same league in which Wang ZhiZhi is averaging 27 points and 10 rebounds per game.
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Old 03-16-2007, 01:51 PM   #15
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Default Re: "NBA prospect Yi in spotlight at Chinese league finals"

Quote of the day

Quote:
I have played against Big Wang many times - Yao Ming.
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