Yao Ming steps down from CBA's chairman position

2023-05-25 16:56

Former Houston Rockets star Yao Ming has stepped down as head of China's national basketball league.

Credit: Xinhua/Wu Zhizun
Credit Xinhua/Wu Zhizun

An eight-time NBA All-Star, Yao Ming had been leading efforts to commercialize the top-tier 20-team Chinese Basketball Association Management Company since his appointment in 2017. But now he's decided to resign, with CBA giving no indication of the reason behind his departure other than that the board of directors had determined it was time for new leadership.

Yao's replacement is veteran sports journalist Xu Jicheng, who served on committees bidding for and overseeing management of the 2008 Beijing Olympics and last year's Winter Games

Yao was one of the first Chinese athletes to become an international household name when the Houston Rockets drafted him with the first pick in 2002. The 2.29-meter center played for eight seasons in the NBA before retiring in 2011, citing chronic injuries.

Yao Ming

Yao  Ming
Position: C
Age: 42
Height: 229 cm
Weight: 140 kg
Birth place: China

Allegations of corruption have dogged the league in recent years. Two teams, the Jiangsu Dragons and Shanghai Sharks, were ejected from the league finals last month after being found to have engaged in unsporting conduct over a series of turnovers that resulted in a come-from-behind win by the Sharks.

The outcome was judged as suspicious and resulted in a swift investigation and punishment for both teams. Managers and coaching staff from each team have been barred from the league for up to five years.

China's basketball and football leagues have drawn foreign talent and commercial endorsements, but are weighted down by uncertain ownership lineups and the influence of government. Some officials have been placed under investigation for bribe taking and other forms of corruption.


We want to hear from you. Be the first to comment!

Add comment

  Subscribe   Total comments: 0

We have the right to remove comments which are offensive, contains abusive language, or violates other rules of the website