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Yao slept here

June 27, 2008 |  7:00 am

Yao Ming It could be the mother of all garage sales.

Beijing Games organizers hope to recoup some of their costs by auctioning off more than 200 million items -- including the bed where 7-foot-6' NBA All-star Yao Ming will sleep.

China Daily reports that Beijing Game organizers hope to raise up to $1 billion yuan ($146 million) by selling furniture, fixtures, clocks, light bulbs, "a variety of sports equipment" and even some of the land underneath Olympic Games venues.
The sale will be conducted by the China Beijing Equity Exchange, which describes itself as "the sole institution for the transfer of ownership of state-owned enterprises."
"Obviously, the bidding will be hot," said CBEE President Xiong Yan. "People will be looking for memorabilia."

A photo in China's largest English-language paper shows that the bed actually is two beds -- a normal-sized bed with an additional mattress attached to where Yao will rest his size 18 feet.

The Houston Rockets center who has been recovering from an injury told a packed news conference in Beijing on Thursday that "I had a physical in Houston on Monday... My fracture is 80% healed, which is normal after four months treatment."

Doctors, Yao added, cleared him for practice in mid-July: "Nobody would want to miss the Beijing Olympics and I won't let you down."

-- Greg Johnson

Photo: Yao Ming during a June 26 Beijing press conference. Credit: Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images