Yao recovering well, hopes to return next season

Houston Rockets center Yao Ming hopes to return to the NBA next

season as he continues to recover from surgery on his left foot.

“I’m definitely recovering and the recent results of my

checkups allowed me to make this long trip back to Shanghai from

the U.S.,” Yao said on Friday.

He was in Shanghai to help launch a public service

announcement about protecting sharks by the San Francisco-based

conservation group WildAid.

Houston lost its 7-foot-6 center for this season when he had

surgery in May to repair a hairline fracture in his left foot. Yao

has said he wants to allow enough time for his bones to fully heal.

“I might be completely recovered by next season,” he said.

He has been a spokesman for WildAid since 2006.