No failure to communicate

Updated: December 4, 2003, 5:35 PM ET
By Frank Hughes | Special to ESPN.com

Last season, the Houston Rockets were playing one of a myriad of their regular-season games when an unnamed referee sidled up to 7-foot-5 rookie center Yao Ming and uttered some directions.

Yao did not respond.

At first, the official thought, he was too far away from a man standing that tall, whose ears were two feet away from the offical's mouth. So the referee yelled louder. Still, Yao did not respond, and the referee thought that perhaps the language barrier with the native of China ...

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