HOUSTON There is no if.
This was Yao Ming at his philosophical finest; part Yoda, part Neo. In his first appearance at Toyota Center since his fragile feet forced his premature retirement last summer, Yao was bombarded was questions from media seeking to unearth any residual bitterness in his disposition.
The statement was profound the first time Yao uttered it in response, yet media persisted. Surely Yao was bloated with regret and remorse over a career cut short before vast promise reached fruition. He must have harbored resentment over what never materialized for himself singularly or collectively with oft-injured teammate Tracy McGrady.
Yao projected an aura of peace and tranquility yet his inquisitors, blinded by their assumptions that Yao somehow felt incomplete as a human, were oblivious to it. So Yao had to repeat himself despite the message coming through so resoundingly clear initially: There is no if.
"I feel pleased that I could have a career that's been in...