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Yao Ming Returns, Houston Rockets Prepare For Upcoming Season

HOUSTON - APRIL 30:  Center Yao Ming #11 of the Houston Rockets in Game Six of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at Toyota Center on April 30, 2009 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images
Brandon RibakSenior Writer IAugust 25, 2010

Yao Ming's devastating foot injury during the 2009 NBA Playoffs that made him contemplate about retirement forced the 7'6" center to sit out for the entire 2009-10 season. 

During Yao's season long absence Houston acquired shooting-guard Kevin Martin via trade. In addition, the Rockets starting point-guard, Aaron Brooks, won the NBA's Most Improved Player Award while leading the league with 209 three-pointers made.

Although the Rockets completed the regular season with a 42-40 record (first season under 50 wins since the 05'-06' season) the team managed to make some key moves during the current offseason that should catapult the organization back into the postseason.

The Rockets re-signed Luis Scola and Kyle Lowry in addition to signing veteran center Brad Miller to a three-year contract.

Miller provides the organization with experience and much needed insurance at the five spot.

In addition to the re-signings of Luis Scola and Kyle Lowry, on Aug. 11 Houston agreed to ship Trevor Ariza to the New Orleans Hornets in return for New Jersey's shooting-guard Courtney Lee as part of a four-team deal.

This transaction reportedly saves the Rockets approximately $10 million for the 2010-11 season.

With eight players on the roster being 25 years of age or younger, including 14th overall pick Patrick Patterson, Houston has much to look forward to as the season nears.

Brooks will most likely be the man running the show, but with support from sharp-shooter Martin, rebounding machine Scola, defensive specialist Shane Battier, big man Yao, and the energy from the young guns, the Houston Rockets have placed the right pieces into the puzzle to enjoy a successful campaign this year.

For more of Brandon's content be sure to check out www.nbaprimetime.com and follow him on twitter at www.twitter.com/_nbaprimetime

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