YAO Ming will return to the city of some of his greatest basketball triumphs when he serves as a judge for the 2013 All-Star Game's slam dunk event in Houston.
Chinese icon Yao joins four other Houston Rockets legends, Clyde Drexler, Dikembe Mutombo, Hakeem Olajuwon and Rudy Tomjanovich, to judge the competition, which this year pits three Eastern Conference players against a trio from the Western Conference.
Yao joined the Rockets after being the first pick in the 2002 National Basketball Association draft. He went on to become an eight-time NBA All-Star and announced his retirement in July 2011 following foot and leg injuries. Yao played eight seasons with the Rockets, reaching the playoffs four times. In 486 games, he averaged 19 points and 9.2 rebounds per game.
Today's competition will feature six dunkers competing over two rounds.
Team West comprises 2012 champion Jeremy Evans of the Utah Jazz, along with the Los Angeles Clippers' Eric Bledsoe and Denver Nuggets' Kenneth Faried. The East has Indiana Pacers' Gerald Green, Toronto Raptors' Terrence Ross and New York Knicks' James White.