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Zhou Qi was born in poverty to parents whose names are not popular but he has defied his humble beginnings to pull off the rarest of occurrences – a Chinese drafted in the National Basketball Association (NBA). His story is unique and shows a determination to succeed at all cost and rise to the top of the sport we all have come to love. Let’s take a delve into the life of Zhou Qi and learn about him a bit more.
Zhou Qi’s Bio, Age
Zhou Qi is a Chinese basketball player who is currently thriving in the NBA. Born in China, in a place known as Xinxiang in the province of Henan, his birthdate is given as January 16, 1996. Qi is a very tall athlete, a gene that seems to be abundantly present in the family as his parents are also tall. While his father is 6 ft 5 in, Qi’s mother is 5 ft 11 in. He is the only child of his parents and it is not certain what his education background is having come to form a poor home.
His obvious talents only began to catch the eye of scouts and other observers in 2011 when he represented his country, China, at the TBF International U-16 (Basketball) Tournament. His magnificent showings meant that China would come out top in the tournament. At the age of 15, he led his team to best the German team in the semi-finals by posting an outstanding 41 points, 28 rebounds, and 15 blocks. And as if that was not enough, it was game on for him again in the final against Turkey (which was the host nation) and he continued where he left off against the German side by recording 30 points, 17 rebounds, and 8 blocks, which did enough to win them the title and earning him the MVP crown.
Furthermore, Zhou Qi showed that his performance in the U-16 tournament was not a fluke as he entered the Albert Schweitzer Tournament the next year, in 2012 and his average was 16.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 4.2 blocks, which cemented his place as one of the best teenage players in international basketball. His exploits would see him leave his boyhood club the Liaoning Jaguars and join a professional basketball team in the form of the Xinjiang Flying Tigers of the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) in 2014.
Zhou Qi’s move to Xinjiang Flying Tigers sparked up some controversies. First, there was the rumor that he rejected offers from colleges from the United States who offered him scholarship packages (a move which was seen by the local media as a better prospect for his career) but he rejected them for a cash-induced move to play for the Tigers. Again, there were rumors that he was made the highest-paid player on the Tigers teams with a 3-year contract worth $744,000. But even though the rumors continued to spread as the controversies raged on, the club vehemently denied all the accounts.
In his last season with the Tigers, the 2016–17 season, he led the team to their first ever championship victory before buying out his remaining contract to be eligible to be part of the 2016 NBA Draft. Zhou Qi became the first Chinese in nine years to enter the NBA draft and he was selected in the by the Houston Rockets as the 43rd overall pick. He would, however, not sign a professional contract until July 2017 and even though he made his debut with the Rockets in a win over the Dallas Mavericks in October that same year, he was assigned to their affiliate in the NBA G-League, Rio Grande Valley Vipers.
Qi started his international basketball career with the youth cadres. As mentioned earlier, he stepped up on the basketball scene with amazing performances as a 15-year old with the U-16 national team in 2011. He would, however, make his debut with the senior team in the 2014 Asian Games which was held in South Korea. Qi was also part of the team that represented China as they hosted and won the FIBA Asia Championship in 2015 where his 16 points and 14 rebounds earned him a spot in the 2015 FIBA Asia Championship All-Star Five. He is also part of the basketball team that represented China at the 2016 Summer Olympics which held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Zhou Qi’s Net Worth
The Houston Rockets power forward is a rising star in the NBA and do not take that for granted as he has all it takes in his arsenal to reach whatever height he hopes to reach in the game. He signed a four-year rookie contract worth about $5.6 million with a guaranteed sum of about $820,000. His annual salary is quite above the $1 million-mark but not in any way near the franchise top earners such as , who earns $28 million and who earns $24 million in annual income.
A search for a parent or relative for Zhou Qi on the internet (Google Search) will bring up the name “Zhou Jianwei” but it is not clear who the aforementioned is – whether father or mother. There is no other detailed account of who his parents are or other relatives but what we do know is that he is a single child and does not have any siblings.
On the relationship front, there is no mention of any lady (or man) in his life on a romantic standing. His social media pages do not give out any information and so we assume he is currently focused on his career and hoping to make something out of it.
Body Measurements – Height, Weight
Zhou Qi towers so high and ranks among the tallest players in the NBA with a height of 7 ft 2 in (2.18 m). His weight is measured at 95 kg (210 pounds) with his wingspan put at 7-7¾ while his standing reach is 9-6½.