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Home >> Sports
UPDATED: 08:28, February 17, 2005
Bateer highlights for Beijing Ducks' winning opener
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Former NBA and NBDL player Mengke Bateer scored 25 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in his first game back to Chinese Basketball Association (CBA) league, leading the Beijing Ducks to a 108-87 victory over the Shandong Flaming Bulls.

Bateer, who became the second Chinese player in the National Basketball Association (NBA) after Wang Zhizhi, joined the Denver Nugget in 2002.

The 29-year-old center acquired an NBA championships ring along with the San Antonio Spurs during the 2002-03 season before he joined the Toronto Raptors at the end of the season.

He played for the Huntsville Flight in the National Basketball Development League before returning to China prior to the Spring Festival.

Though not starting the game, Bateer received an ovation when he replaced American center Olumide Oyedeji with 2:45 left in the first quarter, grabbing an offensive rebound and making the following layup.

"Bateer has not played with the Ducks' teammates for three years. I believe he could be better off in the following games," said the Ducks' head coach Min Lulei.

Bateer, who played 23 minutes and 36 seconds in the game, said he needs more patience. "I didn't touch the ball for over 20 days after I came back from the U.S.. I will be more aggressive."

The Ducks wrapped up the season with four wins over the Flaming Bulls to remain at the second place of the North Division of the league, behind the Liaoning Hunters.

Oyedeji added 17 rebounds and 17 points for the Ducks, while forward Jiao Jian chipped in 19 and Men Wei 18.

The Flaming Bulls never took the lead from the beginning and failed to close the gap under 10 points after the first quarter.

Source: Xinhua

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