At first glance, tall Asian basketball players may seem like a contradiction in terms. After all, the majority of Asians are known for their short stature. Yet over the past few decades, some of the most talented and successful basketball players in the world have been of Asian descent.

In this article, we’ll explore who these height-advantaged athletes are, how they achieved success in a game typically dominated by taller Americans, and what their legacy is to the sport. We’ll also look at some of the incredible records they have set and how they’ve helped pave the way for future generations of Asian ballers.

So if you’re an aspiring basketball player or just an interested fan, read on to learn more about tall Asian basketball players – an unlikely but very real phenomenon that has taken the sport by storm!

Yao Ming: Career Highlights

Yao Ming was like a giant amongst men on the court, towering over his opponents with his impressive height. His career highlights are a testament to his talent and athleticism.

Yao Ming was an eight-time NBA All-Star and five-time All-NBA player. He holds the record as the top international draft pick in NBA history, having been taken first overall by the Houston Rockets in 2002. He also led the Rockets to four straight playoff appearances and two trips to the Western Conference Finals between 2004 and 2009. In addition, he was named the MVP of the 2004 All-Star game and won a bronze medal with China at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Off the court, Yao has become an ambassador for basketball in China, helping to promote the sport through various initiatives such as hosting youth camps and establishing charity organizations. His influence on Chinese basketball has been immense, inspiring generations of players to pursue their dreams of playing in the NBA.

Yao’s illustrious career serves as an inspiration for aspiring hoopsters everywhere, showing that anything is possible if you’re willing to put in hard work and dedication.

Yuta Watanabe: From Japan To The G-League

A remarkable athlete, Yuta Watanabe has made a name for himself in the world of basketball – and he’s just getting started. This tall Asian player hails from Japan and is making waves across the globe. His journey began with playing on his high school team in Kanagawa, but it didn’t take long before he was taking his talents to the next level. Here are three highlights of this rising star:

First, Yuta Watanabe has achieved success on the court through hard work and determination. After attending George Washington University, he was drafted into the G League in 2018. He then went on to sign with the Memphis Grizzlies, becoming only the fourth Japanese-born player to make it into an NBA league team.

Second, Yuta Watanabe proved himself through awards and honors throughout his career. In 2019 he won a G League Slam Dunk Contest with an impressive 360 windmill dunk. That same year he also received All-NBA G League Third Team honors for his stellar performance that season.

Finally, Yuta Watanabe continues to inspire other players to reach for their dreams – both in Japan and abroad. He has become a role model for young athletes all over the world who can look up to him as an example of what hard work can accomplish. His story shows that anything is possible if you put your mind to it! As we move forward into a new era of basketball worldwide, we can be sure that Yuta Watanabe will remain at its forefront.

Hamed Haddadi: The First Iranian Player In The Nba

Hamed Haddadi is an Iranian professional basketball player who made history by becoming the first Iranian to play in the National Basketball Association. Standing at seven feet two inches tall, he is one of the tallest players to ever come out of Iran. His career began in his native country before taking him to a number of teams around the world. Here are four reasons why Hamed Haddadi stands out from other tall Asian basketball players:

First, he was the first Iranian athlete to make it into the NBA. This feat opened up opportunities for many aspiring players from his home country, as it showed that anything is possible with dedication and hard work. Second, Hamed has been able to stay competitive despite playing against much younger opponents. He has consistently demonstrated his strength on both offense and defense throughout his career. Third, he’s an incredibly versatile player who can play any position on the court – from point guard to center – making him a valuable asset for any team. Finally, he’s been able to adapt quickly to new cultures and environments during his time abroad, demonstrating an impressive level of professionalism and commitment regardless of where he plays.

Hamed has achieved great success throughout his career and accomplished something that no other Iranian player had done before him – a true testament to his talent and perseverance. Today, he continues to inspire many young athletes in Iran with his story and remains one of Asia’s most recognizable names in basketball circles worldwide.

Sun Ming Ming: China’s Tallest Player

Making waves in the world of basketball, Sun Ming Ming has soared to great heights. Standing at a towering 7’9″, the Chinese player is making his mark on the court. His journey to becoming one of China’s tallest players undoubtedly hasn’t been a walk in the park.

Despite any difficulties he may have encountered along the way, Sun Ming Ming has overcome them with grace and determination. He was even signed as a free agent by the American team, The Maryland Nighthawks, of the now-defunct ABA league. After that, he played for three teams in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) for five years – all while remaining dedicated to improving his game.

Sun Ming Ming’s dedication and hard work has paid off in spades. He’s achieved success on both an individual level and as part of a team, having won championships with two CBA teams and being named Defensive Player of the Year in 2011-2012. His commitment to furthering himself on and off court is inspiring and has earned him recognition from basketball fans around the world. With such a strong presence established, it’ll be exciting to see what other feats this giant of basketball will accomplish!

Rik Smits: The Dutchman In The Nba

At 7 feet 4 inches tall, Rik Smits was a giant in the basketball court. He was widely known for his ability to bring a unique style of play to the NBA. His Dutch roots made him an intriguing player, as he became the first European-born player to ever be drafted by an NBA team.

Smits’ career began in 1988 when he was drafted into the NBA by the Indiana Pacers. He quickly became a fan favorite due to his raw talent and incredible height. Despite being undersized for his position, he had remarkable ball-handling and shooting skills which allowed him to be very successful on the court.

After retiring from the NBA in 2000, Smits went on to become one of the most revered players of his time. His impressive list of accolades include being voted as an All-Star twice, being named Most Improved Player in 1997, and having his jersey number retired by the Pacers organization. He is also remembered for being one of only three players who have ever scored more than 10,000 points while playing for the same team throughout their entire career.

The legacy that Rik Smits left behind is undeniable – he opened up doors for other international players and set high standards for those who followed him into the league. His impact on basketball will never be forgotten by fans around the world. With this in mind, it’s no surprise that he is fondly remembered as one of Europe’s most successful exports to ever make it big in America’s premier basketball league.

Yuta Tabuse: Japan’s First Nba Player

Yuta Tabuse is a name that has gone down in basketball history. He was the first Japanese player to make it to the NBA, and he has earned himself a special place in the hearts of those who love the game. Born in 1977, Yuta grew up with a passion for basketball, and this led him to become the first Japanese player ever to be drafted into the NBA. He started off his career playing for his hometown team, the Saitama Broncos, and then moved on to play for other teams before eventually making it to the NBA.

Yuta’s time in the NBA was short-lived but memorable nonetheless. While playing for two seasons with the Phoenix Suns, he made an impact by becoming one of their most reliable players during his time there. His best season came during his second year with them when he averaged 5 points per game and 4 assists per game. Although he never fully achieved his dream of becoming a star in the NBA, Yuta’s accomplishments will always be remembered as an inspiration for young athletes who are looking to achieve greatness like him.

Despite not lasting long in the league due to injury problems and roster moves, Yuta Tabuse will forever be remembered as Japan’s first ever NBA player and an inspiration to many aspiring basketball players around the world. His hard work and determination have made him a role model for all those who want to reach their goals no matter how difficult they may seem at times. With this legacy behind him, Yuta can look back on his journey proudly knowing that he helped pave the way for future generations of Japanese basketball players looking to make it big in America’s premier professional sports league.

Andray Blatche: From High School Star To The Nba

Andray Blatche is a shining example of an athlete who has achieved success through hard work and dedication. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes, he has worked himself up from high school star to NBA professional. He stands out as one of the tallest Asian basketball players.

A graduate of South Kent School in Connecticut, Andray was recognized as one of the top players in the country during his senior year. His athleticism and tenacity earned him numerous accolades, including being named MVP of the McDonald’s All-American Game. This led to an impressive college career at Syracuse University before eventually being drafted to the NBA in 2005 by the Washington Wizards.

Since then, Andray has made several stops throughout his NBA career, playing for teams such as Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers. He currently plays for Xinjiang Flying Tigers in China’s Basketball Association (CBA). Despite all these transitions, Blatche continues to be one of Asia’s most prominent basketball players, using his stature to inspire other aspiring athletes from around the world. His story serves as a reminder that with hard work and dedication, any dream is achievable. With this mindset, Andray looks forward to achieving even more success in his future endeavors.

Kim Jong-Kyu: South Korean Sensation

Kim Jong-kyu is a South Korean basketball sensation who has made a name for himself in the sport. He has achieved success through his hard work and dedication on the court, and his commitment to improving his game. His skill set and ability to make plays have made him one of the most exciting prospects in Asia.

Kim’s journey to becoming an international star began when he was just 15 years old. He was selected as part of South Korea’s national team, where he gained experience playing against other top Asian players. After that, he played in various tournaments throughout Asia and Europe, gaining valuable experience that helped him develop his game further.

Throughout his career, Kim has showcased his remarkable athleticism and skill set in many different ways: • Versatility: Kim is able to play multiple positions on the court, making him a valuable asset to any team. • Leadership: Kim is a leader on the court, always looking for ways to help his team succeed. He strives to be an example for younger players by showing them what it takes to become successful. • Scoring Ability: Kim can score from anywhere on the court, whether it be from three-pointers or driving to the rim. His ability to make big shots at crucial moments makes him a reliable go-to option for teams looking for scoring options late in games.

Kim’s impressive resume speaks for itself; he has won several awards including MVP of The Basketball Tournament (TBT) All-Star Game in 2020 and All-Star MVP of The Basketball Tournament (TBT) World Cup in 2018. His accomplishments have cemented him as one of Asia’s most talented basketball stars and undoubtedly secured his future in the sport. With his exceptional skillset and leadership qualities, Kim Jong-kyu has become a South Korean sensation with no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

Jeremy Lin: From Harvard To The Nba

He is a giant in the world of basketball, a veritable titan of the court. Jeremy Lin is one of the most famous tall Asian basketball players, blazing his own path from Harvard to the NBA. His story is an inspiring one that has captivated fans around the world.

Lin was born in California and raised in New York, where he attended Harvard. He was undrafted in 2010, but signed with his hometown Golden State Warriors shortly thereafter as an undrafted free agent. He played for two seasons before being waived in 2011 and then picked up by the Houston Rockets.

Lin’s rise to fame happened during his stint with the New York Knicks, when he became known as “Linsanity” due to his incredible play and electrifying energy on the court. His time with the Knicks was short-lived, but it will forever be remembered as one of the greatest Cinderella stories in sports history. From there, Lin has gone on to play for several other teams and established himself as a force to be reckoned with on any court he graces.

Lin’s story is sure to continue inspiring basketball fans everywhere — no matter where his career takes him next — and serve as an example that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Now it’s time to take a look at another Chinese player who made waves when they were drafted by an NBA team – Zhou Qi of the Houston Rockets…

Zhou Qi: First Chinese Player Drafted By The Houston Rockets

Zhou Qi, the first Chinese player to be drafted by the Houston Rockets, is a remarkable basketball player. His rise to NBA stardom has been nothing short of inspiring. Here is an exploration of his journey and accomplishments:

  1. Zhou Qi was born in 1995 in China’s Henan Province. He started playing basketball at the age of 12, and started making waves in the local leagues when he turned 14.

  2. His talent quickly caught the attention of NBA scouts and he was eventually selected as the 43rd overall pick by the Houston Rockets in 2016. This made him the first Chinese player ever to be drafted into a US professional basketball team.

  3. Since joining the league, Zhou Qi has impressed with his natural athleticism and energy on court. He has also become one of China’s most recognizable sports stars. He regularly appears on TV shows, promoting both the sport of basketball and Chinese culture abroad.

  4. Zhou Qi continues to make strides in his career and is sure to have many more successes ahead of him. His story may be one that future generations look up to as they enter their own sports careers—a shining example of what hard work and dedication can achieve.

Ha Seung-Jin: South Korea’s Big Man

Ha Seung-Jin is a South Korean basketball player who stands at 7 feet 3 inches tall. He made his professional debut in South Korea’s KBL league in 2002, and quickly established himself as one of the best players in the league. He was named KBL Rookie of the Year, and also won two KBL MVP awards during his time there.

Ha Seung-Jin was drafted by the Portland Trail Blazers in 2004, making him the first Korean player to be selected in an NBA draft. However, he only played one season in the NBA before returning to South Korea. Despite his short stint in the NBA, Ha Seung-Jin continued to dominate professionally with various teams throughout Asia.

Ha Seung-Jin’s accomplishments have earned him legendary status amongst fans of Asian basketball. His career has been an inspiration for many young Asian players aspiring to make it big on a global stage. The success of players like Ha Seung-Jin has paved the way for future generations to follow their dreams and achieve great heights within basketball. With that being said, we now turn our attention to Wang Zhizhi – China’s first NBA player.

Wang Zhizhi: China’s First Nba Player

When it comes to tall Asian basketball players, one name that stands out is Wang Zhizhi. The Chinese star was the first player from his country to make it to the NBA, and he achieved a number of successes during his career. However, there are some who have raised doubts about whether or not he deserves a place in the conversation about great tall Asian basketball players.

To begin with, Wang Zhizhi was an incredible player when he was on the court. He was able to score from all over the floor and also had a keen eye for passing. He averaged 10 points and 5 rebounds per game in his six seasons in the NBA, which is impressive for someone of his height. Additionally, despite being 7’1″, he had excellent agility and could move around quickly on both offense and defense.

However, it’s important to note that Wang Zhizhi never truly reached super stardom or made any All-Star teams while playing in the NBA. Critics argued that despite being talented and showing flashes of brilliance at times, he never quite managed to take his game to the next level and make an impact on the league overall.

Regardless of this critique though, Wang Zhizhi still deserves recognition for being a trailblazer for Chinese basketball players in America – something which should not be overlooked by anyone interested in learning about tall Asian basketball players. His accomplishments speak for themselves: becoming China’s first ever NBA player is no small feat!

Sim Bhullar: Canada’s Tallest Player

Standing at an astonishing 7’5″, Sim Bhullar is no doubt one of the tallest basketball players in the world, let alone Canada. He became the first player of Indian descent to play a game in the NBA. This made him a trailblazer for players from South Asian backgrounds looking to compete in professional basketball.

In his rookie season, Bhullar averaged impressive stats of 4.2 points and 3 rebounds in 12 minutes per game as part of the Sacramento Kings roster. His impressive size and strength allowed him to stand out among other players on the court, and make his mark as one of Canada’s most successful basketball exports.

Bhullar has since gone on to become an international star with stints in China, India, and Mexico where he continued to dominate games with his height advantage. He even returned briefly to the NBA in 2017 with the Toronto Raptors, becoming only the second Canadian-born player to play for them after Jamaal Magloire. It’s clear that Bhullar has made big strides towards being seen as not only a talented athlete but also a symbol of success for Canadian immigrants everywhere.

The story of Sim Bhullar is indeed an inspiring one, showing that hard work pays off regardless of background or experience level. He serves as a reminder that anything is possible if you put your mind to it – an attitude we could all benefit from embracing!

Takehiko Orimo: Japan’s Versatile Veteran

Standing at an impressive 6-foot-4, Takehiko Orimo is one of the tallest and most versatile basketball veterans to come out of Japan. He is no ordinary player: his poise, agility, and finesse on the court have earned him the nickname “Tiger,” a testimony to his prowess on the hardwood. A true marvel of athleticism, Orimo has amazed fans in Japan and around the world with his incredible feats of basketball mastery.

Orimo’s remarkable career includes stints in both Europe and Japan, where he played for powerhouse teams like Joventut Badalona, Shimane Susanoo Magic, Olimpia Milano, and Akatsuki Five. He also represented Japan in international competitions like the FIBA World Cup Qualifiers and Asian Games. His accomplishments with these teams are nothing short of extraordinary––he holds the distinction of being one of only two Japanese players to have achieved a double-double in EuroLeague play.

With such an illustrious career under his belt, it’s clear that Orimo is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to tall Asian basketball players. His size and skill set make him an ideal candidate for any team looking to add height and experience to its roster––while also bringing some much needed flair to the court!

Rin Okubo: Japan’s Rising Star

Rin Okubo is a rising star in the world of Asian basketball, standing tall above the rest. Like a beacon of light in a dark night, he stands out with his extraordinary athletic ability and impressive height. His impressive skillset and undeniable passion for the game has seen him become one of Japan’s most promising young players.

At 2.06m tall, Rin Okubo is an intimidating presence on the court. He has a wingspan that reaches far beyond what can be seen with the naked eye, allowing him to swat away shots left and right. His agility and speed make it difficult for opponents to keep up with him as he maneuvers around them without breaking a sweat. In addition to this, his physical strength allows him to grab rebounds and launch shots from all over the court with ease.

Okubo’s determination and hard work have helped him excel at both ends of the floor time after time. Whether it’s blocking shots or driving towards the basket for layups, he does it all with enthusiasm that can’t be matched. His talent for playing defense has made him one of Japan’s most sought-after players, as well as a fan favorite when it comes to international competitions like FIBA Asia Cup 2021 and Asian Games 2022. As he continues to improve his already impressive skillset each day, there’s no telling how high he can go in terms of becoming an elite basketball player.


The world of basketball has come a long way in the past few decades, and Asian players have contributed significantly to this growth. From Yao Ming’s incredible career highlights to Yuta Watanabe’s journey from Japan to the G-League, tall Asian basketball players have found success in many different leagues and countries around the world. Not only are they making their mark on the court, they are also changing stereotypes and opening up new opportunities for others who share their heritage.

This phenomenon is often referred to as the “Yao Ming effect,” with an astonishing number of tall Asian players now competing at the highest levels of professional basketball. It is clear that these athletes have made an indelible impact on the game, and paved the way for more opportunities for future generations of Asian basketball stars.

In conclusion, it is hard to overstate how influential tall Asian players have been in shaping modern basketball. Through their hard work and dedication, these talented athletes have not only achieved success but also helped to create a more inclusive environment for all aspiring basketball players around the world.

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