PDA

View Full Version : The Rockets Are NOT a Championship Caliber Team: Here's Why



jam
07-08-2013, 10:10 AM
The last few days have seen an avalanche of rockets related threads and a lot of preseason hype and anticipation. Calm down. The rockets aren't ready to win a championship. Yet. Here's why:

1. Howard: has he recovered fully from back surgery? How will his shoulder hold up? Howard doesn't shy away from contact, and his ongoing health is always a concern.

I won't even speak to his psychological and emotional issues, which I find unfathomable. There will be a honeymoon period lasting up to a season (highly unlikely), but at some point the REAL Dwight will emerge to question the coaching, his teammates, the amount of pollen in the air, the guy riding his bumper during his commutes to games and practices, and god knows what else.

--

2. McHale. McHale is an inexperienced coach, and has struggled to integrate the talents of his starters. Some problems I observed:

a. The team's offensive sets often looked laughable at the start of the season--an appalling lack of cohesion between Lin and Harden and between the guards and Asik were evident.

b. Mchale seemed unable to find a way to integrate the talents of Harden and Lin; two ball dominant scorers and playmakers. Oddly, Mchale attempted to use lin as a 3 point specialist, which seemed strange, since Lin has never been a considered a great shooter, but rather a slash and kick scorer and assist man.

bi. Harden meanwhile, got off to a blazing start, then became increasingly inefficient as time wore on, with his FG% plummeting drastically. In addition, Harden, given the green light, often became a notorious ball stopper, along the lines of kobe and carmelx, turning his teammates into spectators. While McHale apparently told Howard he would hold him accountable, that was certainly not the case with harden.

--

3. Howard and Asik. If mchale had difficulties integrating lin and harden's talents, he will have yet another problem integrating asik and howard. Again, you have two players with similar, largely redundant skillsets, who don't seem to complement one another.

--

4. PF? The rockets don't have a clear cut starter at PF. Donuts is inexperienced and an offensive specialist. McHale seems to have little faith in TJ, although he is widely considered to be a very promising two way player. PF has been a revolving door for the rockets and that situation seems unlikely to change, barring yet another blockbuster move for a big name.

The rockets have two proven all nba players, and several (parsons, lin) who seem likely to break out as all stars in the next 2-3 seasons, but a lot of this hinges on mchale's ability to milk maximum contributions from every player; a talent mchale has not yet shown or developed.

The bottom line is that HOU is one move away (an all star 4) from contending for a championship.

They may also be a coaching move away as well.

If I were a betting man, I'd say 15-16 is their best chance to win it all, but ONLY IF they have acquired a top tier 4 and/or TJ and/or Donuts becomes a quality starter.

There are a lot of IF's there. The good news is, the rockets have a ton of talent, and arguably the best GM in the game. The future is very bright, but this in no way, shape or form guarantees a championship. :)

MonroeFAN
07-08-2013, 10:24 AM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

2-ONE-5
07-08-2013, 10:28 AM
someones drinking the haterade. the offseason isnt over yet, Houston isnt done trying to better the team.

WhiteSoxGod
07-08-2013, 10:33 AM
someones drinking the haterade. the offseason isnt over yet, Houston isnt done trying to better the team.

LOL EXACTLY, saying 2 superstars doesn't make you at least a contender for the title is either asinine, incredibly ignorant, or just plain & simple hate.

Sly Guy
07-08-2013, 10:37 AM
Asik will be moved.

Dwight's injuries are still a concern, but it's a full off season and a year removed from his last surgery.

If Dwight brings the same 'me first' attitude to the Rockets, I can see team chemistry still being a problem [although being roasted for it last year in LA may have changed him]

Coaching may be the issue, I've never been a fan of McHale, however, the coach is the most easily replaced part.

All in all, the Rockets are in a much stronger position this year and so far have done everything they can to make themselves considered a strong contender.

TrAv=MaGiCfReAk
07-08-2013, 10:46 AM
Saying there not a championship caliber team is as valid as those who claimed the Lakers were guaranteed to be in finals last year before the season started and we all know how that turned out.

Way too soon to tell

lajoie
07-08-2013, 10:58 AM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

There's a big difference playing with Kobe and Harden. Playing with Harden, you might actually get to touch the ball.

jam
07-08-2013, 11:05 AM
You've done an amazing job of displaying both your lack of literacy as well as your deep level of butthurt in just one post. :)

Try using a dictionary next time if you don't understand the difference between a champion and a contender. :)


LOL EXACTLY, saying 2 superstars doesn't make you at least a contender for the title is either asinine, incredibly ignorant, or just plain & simple hate.

shep33
07-08-2013, 11:06 AM
Who knows at this point? Give it time, their roster isn't complete yet.

MonroeFAN
07-08-2013, 11:13 AM
There's a big difference playing with Kobe and Harden. Playing with Harden, you might actually get to touch the ball.


You guys need to SERIOUSLY chill out on Harden. The guy looks like a superstar, and I hope he is because I'm a big fan of his. But one season does not make you better than Kobe (not saying you are suggesting he is better, but you're coming awfully close).

Also, I don't see how giving Dwight touches on the offensive end is conducive to winning a championship.

jam
07-08-2013, 11:17 AM
You obviously didn't watch the rockets play very often, especially in the last half/third of the season.

Harden developed into a notorious ball stopper (at times), all too often dribbling out the clock, and then chucking up a very low percentage 3.


There's a big difference playing with Kobe and Harden. Playing with Harden, you might actually get to touch the ball.

ManRam
07-08-2013, 11:19 AM
yeah. who knows?

i think dwight will play with a bit of a chip on his shoulder. as i've made clear, i think the psychological things are a bit overblown. even if he is a complete headcase, he's out of LA and things should be much more refreshing now. i don't see why he won't perform like he did in orlando, and that's at a top 3-5 player level. unless of course he's still not healthy. backs can be tricky things, maybe he never even gets completely back to where he was.

i just can't see how he doesn't play much, much better. all that stuff said about him that's negative might very well be true and not sensationalized one bit, but this should be a much better environment. the toxicity is gone...be it coach turmoil, kobe, the media, the fans, or whatever...it all figures to be gone.


right now as constructed they aren't true championship contenders. but i don't think they're far off. san antonio i think is going to be on a slight down-swing. the thunder aren't as deep and talented as they were the past two seasons. the nuggets should drop off a bit. the grizzlies figure to be right there, but they aren't world beaters in the least bit. golden state is a wild-card, but i'd hesitate calling them true contenders either.

there are a lot of good teams out west, but i think it's lacking the absolutely dominant teams that we've gotten used to.

WhiteSoxGod
07-08-2013, 11:20 AM
You've done an amazing job of displaying both your lack of literacy as well as your deep level of butthurt in just one post. :)

Try using a dictionary next time if you don't understand the difference between a champion and a contender. :)

Championship Caliber is not champion, it simply means you're a championship contender. A dictionary would not help you. What helps me is my in-depth knowledge of basketball, well enough to know that your statements are very pre-mature and not necessarily founded in sound logic. 2 Superstars make the Rockets a Championship caliber team or in other words, a Championship contender.

WhiteSoxGod
07-08-2013, 11:20 AM
You've done an amazing job of displaying both your lack of literacy as well as your deep level of butthurt in just one post. :)

Try using a dictionary next time if you don't understand the difference between a champion and a contender. :)

Championship Caliber is not champion, it simply means you're a championship contender. A dictionary would not help you. What helps me is my in-depth knowledge of basketball, well enough to know that your statements are very pre-mature and not necessarily founded in sound logic. 2 Superstars make the Rockets a Championship caliber team or in other words, a Championship contender.

jam
07-08-2013, 11:25 AM
LMFAO!!!!!!!!

Holy sh-- dude, thanks for the laugh! :)

Can I get you a sedative? :) You post every comment 3 or 4 times in each thread. Dude, I love your posts, man, pure hilarity!


Championship Caliber is not champion, it simply means you're a championship contender. A dictionary would not help you. What helps me is my in-depth knowledge of basketball, well enough to know that your statements are very pre-mature and not necessarily founded in sound logic. 2 Superstars make the Rockets a Championship caliber team or in other words, a Championship contender.

Chi StateOfMind
07-08-2013, 11:26 AM
I hate when people assume anything. No one here knows absolutely nothing. Its all ppl's opionins. Are they better then Miami, OKC, Chicago, San Antonio, LAC, to us maybe not. But how about we wait and stop making threads that have no benefit yet. Make this around all star break

Snakeyestx
07-08-2013, 11:29 AM
Good god, this whole weekend was "Rockets can do this or that" or "Phil said this" or "Shaq said that" ... make it stop. So much Cali butthurt going on for a guy they talked so much crap about for underperforming.

Here's my theory based off the OP's numbers :


1. Howard: has he recovered fully from back surgery? How will his shoulder hold up? Howard doesn't shy away from contact, and his ongoing health is always a concern.

Know anything about drag racing? There's this little thing called sandbagging where a guy will deliberately underperform to give the false sense of weakness. In drag racing, it's a bit like pool sharking to bait someone into a good wager then blow their doors off. Howard, being unhappy with his situation started sandbagging to either get traded off, or just to illustrate his desire to have some changes made (with the D'antoni offense I suspect). We will know for sure in game 1 of Houston's regular season if he makes a monster first impression.


2. McHale. McHale is an inexperienced coach, and has struggled to integrate the talents of his starters.

This was his first "full" season as Houston's HC with a completely new roster with everyone traded off except Chandler Parsons. He took essentially a brand new roster and took them into the playoffs in his first year. D'Antoni got swept in the first round. Rick Carlisle's Mav's didn't even make the playoffs. McHale lost nearly a month of coaching time due to the death of his daughter and even being under the tutelage of Assistant Coach Kelvin Sampson, Houston still made the playoffs. This is Howard's first chance to be coached by a fellow big man, and a HoF'er at that - one who worked extensively with KG in the early parts of his career, and look how he turned out.


3. Howard and Asik. 4. PF?

I put these two together for one sole reason - I had postulated this before, and seeing as how Daryl Morey and K-Mac have reacted to Asik's displeasure of the situation, I believe they have the same vision. It would appear that they want a 3-man rotation between the 5 and 4 of Howard, Asik and Greg Smith to keep all 3 relatively fresh throughout the season. A front-court of Howard/Asik would be defensively stifling at the cost of some offense, however if Howard and Asik co-exist at the 5 and 4 respectively and work with Olajuwon this summer in his big-man camp, you can have a safe bet that he will teach them the "twin tower" system he once shared with Ralph Sampson in the 80's.

Asik's improvement was monumental and towards the end of the season, you could see he was rather enjoying his role and started doing his best DeAndre Jordan impressions with monster throw-downs. As long as he's willing to play ball (pun intended) and do the 3-man rotation, Houston'll have one fierce front-court.

If not, maybe they'll move him and Lin for someone like Nene or Horford... who knows. :confused:

KniCks4LiFe
07-08-2013, 11:40 AM
jam you've gone coo coo for cocoa puffs?

Dwight Howard once took a team of scrubs to the NBA finals. If he's healthy, not to mention w/ the help of McHale and Hakeem's teacher in Houston, he turns into Dwight Howard the All Star best big man in the league that is a major problem.

Harden can go off 30 pts. a given night when he has space, Dwight can go off 20-30 pts a given night, Parsons is good for 15-20, the question is can Lin? can he develop that 3 pt. shot and contribute 15-20 ppg. If he can't that's the difference w/ them being a championship caliber team or a pretender.

Which is why I proposed if the Roxs ever are offered Rondo + Green for Lin/Parsons/Asik/(2 fillers) you strongly think about making that move.

Jtirado16
07-08-2013, 11:46 AM
As the team stands right now. No they are not a championship caliber team. It'll be interesting to see when the offseason is over tho

FOBolous
07-08-2013, 11:47 AM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

because the Houston team was in the top 5 of many statistical categories but ultimately finished 8th and didn't advance in the playoffs due to youth and inexperience. it's not out of the questions to say the team will do better next year with as they get older and more experienced. another reason why the Rockets didn't finish high despite its high statistical ranking is because Houston relied HEAVILY on 3s...and you know how that goes. Howard will give Houston a stabilizing force in the middle so Houston won't have to rely on the 3 as heavily.

plus Howard didn't work out in LA cause of chemistry issues, injuries, and a bad coach

shep33
07-08-2013, 11:48 AM
I don't know if that Orlando team had scrubs on it, not saying they were stacked lol, but they were okay. Certainly far more talent than LeBron had in Cleveland.

Turkoglu was one of the most dynamic players back then, Rashard and Jameer were all-stars as well, and they had the best shooters in the NBA, along with a top 5 coach.

We also have to remember that this was what 4-5 years ago, and in the much weaker eastern conference.

Muttman73
07-08-2013, 11:50 AM
someones drinking the haterade. the offseason isnt over yet, Houston isnt done trying to better the team.

I thought the Haterade was reserved for Miami??

sep11ie
07-08-2013, 11:52 AM
I've braced myself for the moronic threads about the Rockets that will be coming out.

ClevelandSpider
07-08-2013, 11:53 AM
jam you've gone coo coo for cocoa puffs?

Dwight Howard once took a team of scrubs to the NBA finals. If he's healthy, not to mention w/ the help of McHale and Hakeem's teacher in Houston, he turns into Dwight Howard the All Star best big man in the league that is a major problem.

Harden can go off 30 pts. a given night when he has space, Dwight can go off 20-30 pts a given night, Parsons is good for 15-20, the question is can Lin? can he develop that 3 pt. shot and contribute 15-20 ppg. If he can't that's the difference w/ them being a championship caliber team or a pretender.

Which is why I proposed if the Roxs ever are offered Rondo + Green for Lin/Parsons/Asik/(2 fillers) you strongly think about making that move.

Scrubs? They had 3 all-stars that year in Dwight, Lewis and Nelson, Turkoglu shot the best ball of his career that year, especially in the playoffs and they had one of the best coaches...your statement couldn't be farther from the truth...:facepalm:

Move over Miami bandwagoners of summer 2010 and Lakers bandwagoners of 2012, there's a new sheriff in town that guarantees a title: Rockets fans of summer 2013...

abe_froman
07-08-2013, 11:54 AM
someone's mad...

the rockets have a good shot,not saying they're a lock.but if you have players the likes of a howard and harden ,you def have as good a chance as anyone in the west

Oldmantrash
07-08-2013, 11:54 AM
You can break down every team, except maybe the Heat, and come up with the same conlusion.
There are no super teams, it all depends how they end up meshing.
OKC is flawed, the Spurs are old, it's certanily not far fetched to call them contenders.

abe_froman
07-08-2013, 11:57 AM
I've braced myself for the moronic threads about the Rockets that will be coming out.

if your team gets the prized guy,the fanbases that lost will be out in force

ewells20
07-08-2013, 11:59 AM
Well, I think the Houston Rockets squad last year was about equal to the LA Lakers squad with Dwight last year. They finished with identical 45-37 records. Now, as far as the Lakers are concerned with Dwight, there are a few arguments I can provide there.

1) Dwight was clearly trying to recover from back and shoulder injuries and wasn't 100%. A full offseason to recover and a year removed from surgery, we should see that same defensively dominant force this year.

2) The Lakers struggled all season to become cohesive for several reasons. Injuries to Kobe, Steve Nash, Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard, Steve Blake... this team was decimated almost all season long and the true core of this team never really made its debut 100% healthy.

3) Which leads to argument 3, age. Kobe seems ageless but the wear and tear eventually led to him being hurt. the Lakers squad couldn't take all those minutes because of age and injury. The difference with the Rockets? They have a much younger squad, with fresh legs. They won't tire as easily as the Lakers or be as prone to injury.

So do I think the Rockets can be a championship caliber team. I do, but as with all things it takes time. Do they need a Superstar PF? I don't think so. If they got someone like Ryan Anderson, who is a stretch 4 and can compliment Dwight, in much the same way that a young Rashard Lewis did for Dwight in Orlando, then that would make a world of difference. They would have shooters in Ryan Anderson and Chandler Parsons, that can stretch the floor with their deadly accuracy, which would open the lanes for James Harden and create opportunities off the block for Dwight Howard. But this all takes time, but do I think it can work? Yes.

t_money25
07-08-2013, 12:01 PM
Wayyy to early to make a statement like that. It's also too early to say they are definite contenders. Lets give it a month into the season before we write the Rockets off....

KniCks4LiFe
07-08-2013, 12:04 PM
Scrubs? They had 3 all-stars that year in Dwight, Lewis and Nelson, Turkoglu shot the best ball of his career that year, especially in the playoffs and they had one of the best coaches...your statement couldn't be farther from the truth...:facepalm:

Move over Miami bandwagoners of summer 2010 and Lakers bandwagoners of 2012, there's a new sheriff in town that guarantees a title: Rockets fans of summer 2013...

come on... Nelson I'll give you, Lewis was a three point shooter, Turk was a 3 pt shoot. Nothing special there. You shot down Dwight and it was over.

The Roxs scored 100+ pts ppg last season, now they add Dwight Howard. They are a problem. Not a championship team, but potential.

Chronz
07-08-2013, 12:10 PM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

Prolly because the Rockets were better than the Lakers despite not having Howard...

slashsnake
07-08-2013, 12:15 PM
I would say they are a contender... They could be the top team in the West. Depending on how Rose's comeback goes and how other new teams mesh, they could challenge the heat (especially if Wade/Bosh keep falling).

But as for Howards back surgery, there is a good reason to be hopeful. The last couple months of the season he was really looking more like the Dwight of old (19.5 points 13 boards, 2.7 blocks).

And throw in that he was in what was quite possibly the worst situation for him from a scheme/coaching perspective and going to a coach who was one of the best post players in NBA history. THere's a reason to think he may succeed quite well there.

goku
07-08-2013, 12:15 PM
is the offseason over yet ????

Chronz
07-08-2013, 12:17 PM
You've done an amazing job of displaying both your lack of literacy as well as your deep level of butthurt in just one post. :)

Try using a dictionary next time if you don't understand the difference between a champion and a contender. :)
In which case this thread is even more pointless. Seriously, have you seen a single Rox fan declare themselves champions? Im pretty sure they are all just excited to finally be in the mix again. If you can prove that they aren't, then Ill be interested, but saying a team that isn't done being constructed isn't going to win a chip isnt exactly going out on a limb, lest we forget the triumvirate of Wade-Bron-Bosh didn't win their first year either.

Iron24th
07-08-2013, 12:17 PM
come on... Nelson I'll give you, Lewis was a three point shooter, Turk was a 3 pt shoot. Nothing special there. You shot down Dwight and it was over.

The Roxs scored 100+ pts ppg last season, now they add Dwight Howard. They are a problem. Not a championship team, but potential.

Howard led a team to the finals once in a weak eastern conference, have you seen how tough is the west actually?

Plus howard will not make them better in offense, he'll make them worse, he wants a crazy amount of touches but has just one post move and everyone knows which is it, watch him get the ball stripped 5 times per games.

Chronz
07-08-2013, 12:21 PM
LOL I thought this argument was one sided but those who think Dwight will magically revert to the beast that led Orlando to the Finals are just as blind. The Rox will not likely win the title their first year together people, and thats OK considering its year 1.

slashsnake
07-08-2013, 12:22 PM
And Turk shot 41% from the field that year. If that is shooting the "best ball of his career", that isn't saying a lot. They had 3 pt shooters but that team was built around getting open shots after either penetration or forcing teams to double Dwight.

As for "one of the best coaches"... I like Van Gundy, but if NBA GM's thought that, I think he would have a job.

torocan
07-08-2013, 12:29 PM
I think folks need to temper expectations both ways.

The Rockets will most likely be a competitive play off team with a good shot of getting HCA.

That said it's their first year together and they're still very young so at best they're a dark horse to get to the WCF. I also wouldn't be surprised if they ended up with 5th or 6th seed. That's with the roster today.

IF Morey pulls off another nice trade/signing, the Rockets could become very scary. I doubt many teams want to face them now... they certainly won't want to be facing them later if Morey makes some other nice additions.

ManRam
07-08-2013, 12:33 PM
I don't know if that Orlando team had scrubs on it, not saying they were stacked lol, but they were okay. Certainly far more talent than LeBron had in Cleveland.

Turkoglu was one of the most dynamic players back then, Rashard and Jameer were all-stars as well, and they had the best shooters in the NBA, along with a top 5 coach.

We also have to remember that this was what 4-5 years ago, and in the much weaker eastern conference.

Yeah. They weren't scrubs. Hedo, Lewis and Nelson were all All-Stars during points of their dominance. None were like Harden, but all were great fits especially because they all were great shooters. We had good perimeter defenders during the absolute peak (Lee and Pietrus), nice depth (those two + Gortat, Redick, Alston). And, we had a tremendous coach.

They look like scrubs now, but don't get it twisted, that was a very good TEAM.

But still, you can't downplay the impact he had. He beasted during the Finals run, and consistently churned out top-5 team defenses with 3/4 sub-standard defenders starting with him.

Remember, Houston already has a solid offense. Howard will help in that regard, but the Rockets' issues were defensively and Howard can turn that around, if healthy, very quickly. Even as good of a defender as Asik is, he can't cover the paint and clean up perimeter mistakes like healthy Dwight

Stinkyoutsider
07-08-2013, 12:35 PM
I think the Rockets are fine either way (contender or not). Rockets brass knows this is going to be a multi-year project to become a championship contender and I think Rockets fans will come around and take the club for what it is now (which is a talented team).

Morey collected a lot of assets before getting Howard so I'm sure he's going to be more active now that they have him in the team.

I agree, Harden did show some signs of being a ball stopper late in the season but I think he did everything that Mchale asked of him to do. Or maybe it's not even coaching that contributed to this? Maybe Harden thought in his own mind that this team would only do damage in the playoffs if he took over and put up a good number of shots?

I know a lot of people will roast me for saying this, but I would like if Howard and Asik could function together on the court. As far as an athlete, Howard can play the 4. He's quick and agile for someone of his size. Defensively, the paint would be totally locked down and there's no other 4 in the league who can come close to matching up against Howard. Only negative comes on the offensive end because of spacing problems unless Asik could step out and hit a jumper...

Clippersfan86
07-08-2013, 12:36 PM
come on... Nelson I'll give you, Lewis was a three point shooter, Turk was a 3 pt shoot. Nothing special there. You shot down Dwight and it was over.

The Roxs scored 100+ pts ppg last season, now they add Dwight Howard. They are a problem. Not a championship team, but potential.

Good thing there is another end of the court that matters too (defense). Dwight will no doubt improve their defense but it remains to be seen how much because nobody on their team besides Dwight, Asik, Beverley and Parsons can defend worth a sh** really. Lin, Harden and whoever they get at PF will likely be a defensive liability in the starting lineup.

Clippersfan86
07-08-2013, 12:37 PM
LOL I thought this argument was one sided but those who think Dwight will magically revert to the beast that led Orlando to the Finals are just as blind. The Rox will not likely win the title their first year together people, and thats OK considering its year 1.

Good post. Like I said the one main thing for this team is how big the contending window is. They have at LEAST 5 years to figure it out if they stay together.

PhillyFaninLA
07-08-2013, 12:38 PM
Yup and the Heat are not championship caliber either, or the Bulls with a healthy Rose, or the Bulls with Pippen and Jordan

PhillyFaninLA
07-08-2013, 12:44 PM
Howard led a team to the finals once in a weak eastern conference, have you seen how tough is the west actually?

Plus howard will not make them better in offense, he'll make them worse, he wants a crazy amount of touches but has just one post move and everyone knows which is it, watch him get the ball stripped 5 times per games.


Here are some fresh grapes the one's you are eating are very sour.

ChiSox219
07-08-2013, 12:55 PM
I dont think people realize how good Houston was last especially given the Rockets unique situation. If Dwight is a healthy this team is as much a threat to the west as anyone else.

John Walls Era
07-08-2013, 01:02 PM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

:laugh: Houston was better than the Lakers last year without Howard.

WhiteSoxGod
07-08-2013, 01:04 PM
is the offseason over yet ????

LOL I know right. It is just sad that people are suddenly attacking the Rockets like they were the heat. I mean geez such hater-ade.


I dont think people realize how good Houston was last especially given the Rockets unique situation. If Dwight is a healthy this team is as much a threat to the west as anyone else.

Absolutely correct, to say otherwise is very short-sighted.

akagiredsuns
07-08-2013, 01:06 PM
The last few days have seen an avalanche of rockets related threads and a lot of preseason hype and anticipation. Calm down. The rockets aren't ready to win a championship. Yet. Here's why:

1. Howard: has he recovered fully from back surgery? How will his shoulder hold up? Howard doesn't shy away from contact, and his ongoing health is always a concern.

I won't even speak to his psychological and emotional issues, which I find unfathomable. There will be a honeymoon period lasting up to a season (highly unlikely), but at some point the REAL Dwight will emerge to question the coaching, his teammates, the amount of pollen in the air, the guy riding his bumper during his commutes to games and practices, and god knows what else.

--

2. McHale. McHale is an inexperienced coach, and has struggled to integrate the talents of his starters. Some problems I observed:

a. The team's offensive sets often looked laughable at the start of the season--an appalling lack of cohesion between Lin and Harden and between the guards and Asik were evident.

b. Mchale seemed unable to find a way to integrate the talents of Harden and Lin; two ball dominant scorers and playmakers. Oddly, Mchale attempted to use lin as a 3 point specialist, which seemed strange, since Lin has never been a considered a great shooter, but rather a slash and kick scorer and assist man.

bi. Harden meanwhile, got off to a blazing start, then became increasingly inefficient as time wore on, with his FG% plummeting drastically. In addition, Harden, given the green light, often became a notorious ball stopper, along the lines of kobe and carmelx, turning his teammates into spectators. While McHale apparently told Howard he would hold him accountable, that was certainly not the case with harden.

--

3. Howard and Asik. If mchale had difficulties integrating lin and harden's talents, he will have yet another problem integrating asik and howard. Again, you have two players with similar, largely redundant skillsets, who don't seem to complement one another.

--

4. PF? The rockets don't have a clear cut starter at PF. Donuts is inexperienced and an offensive specialist. McHale seems to have little faith in TJ, although he is widely considered to be a very promising two way player. PF has been a revolving door for the rockets and that situation seems unlikely to change, barring yet another blockbuster move for a big name.

The rockets have two proven all nba players, and several (parsons, lin) who seem likely to break out as all stars in the next 2-3 seasons, but a lot of this hinges on mchale's ability to milk maximum contributions from every player; a talent mchale has not yet shown or developed.

The bottom line is that HOU is one move away (an all star 4) from contending for a championship.

They may also be a coaching move away as well.

If I were a betting man, I'd say 15-16 is their best chance to win it all, but ONLY IF they have acquired a top tier 4 and/or TJ and/or Donuts becomes a quality starter.

There are a lot of IF's there. The good news is, the rockets have a ton of talent, and arguably the best GM in the game. The future is very bright, but this in no way, shape or form guarantees a championship. :)

OP is nothing but a troll, already drawing conclusions and the offseason is far from done and the Rockets have yet to finish tweaking their roster. Adding Omri Casspi was a positive, let's just wait until the roster is set. And please enough with the ignorant Dwight Howard hate. Howard did not fit into Mike D's system. Mike D was trying to do in L.A. what he did in Phoenix with 30+ year-old guys. Exercise a little common sense.

Howard tried to come back early from a shoulder injury and suffered for it. The guy still is in is prime and can still easily be the most dominant center in the league. Bitter Laker or Magic fans just hating. Think before you speak and wait for the dust to settle and then when the Rockets have their roster intact, it will be easy to break down what they're capable of. The Lakers right now are in big trouble. Houston made it to the playoffs and are adding pieces to get them over the top. SMH :facepalm:

tr3ymill3r
07-08-2013, 01:09 PM
Chandler Parsons is the X factor everyone is forgetting about. He had just as much influence in Dwight coming here, he is also better than Metta and Pau. The Lakers were a 7 seed and the Rockets an 8 seed last year, but it's safe to say the Rockets were a better team even without Dwight. If the Heat didn't win a championship in their first year, then every team gets a 1 year pass to gel and come together collectively before they are expected to win in year 2 and 3.

Chronz
07-08-2013, 01:12 PM
Yeah. They weren't scrubs. Hedo, Lewis and Nelson were all All-Stars during points of their dominance. None were like Harden, but all were great fits especially because they all were great shooters. We had good perimeter defenders during the absolute peak (Lee and Pietrus), nice depth (those two + Gortat, Redick, Alston). And, we had a tremendous coach.

They look like scrubs now, but don't get it twisted, that was a very good TEAM.

But still, you can't downplay the impact he had. He beasted during the Finals run, and consistently churned out top-5 team defenses with 3/4 sub-standard defenders starting with him.

Remember, Houston already has a solid offense. Howard will help in that regard, but the Rockets' issues were defensively and Howard can turn that around, if healthy, very quickly. Even as good of a defender as Asik is, he can't cover the paint and clean up perimeter mistakes like healthy Dwight
Is it possible for a crap team to win an elimination game without their best player? Honestly just curious if its ever happened.

Chronz
07-08-2013, 01:15 PM
I dont think people realize how good Houston was last especially given the Rockets unique situation. If Dwight is a healthy this team is as much a threat to the west as anyone else.

Houston had the 6th highest SRS in the West last year. I can see either the Nuggs or Grizz slipping but OKC and LAC should be just as strong. GS is another ascending team.

slashsnake
07-08-2013, 01:17 PM
I think that year Howard went to the finals he was only 3rd or 4th in shots taken. Metta this past season took more shots than Dwight. He isn't like Shaq or Ewing, dominating the ball in the post to score every posession.

And he has been a pretty good scorer despite his lack of moves and any semblance of a shot. In the past 6 years only Dirk, Kobe, Lebron, Wade, Melo, and Durant have scored more points than Dwight. Yet guys like Raymond Felton and Luis Scola took more shots than him in that time. Of the top 7 scoring list in the past 6 years, 6 of them finished in the top 7 in terms of shots taken. Dwight was 35th.

his usage rate has always been in that 20-25% range. Not a big number. Right there with guys like Al Jefferson and lower than Demarcus Cousins.

And over the past 6 years looking at the advanced stats, his teams have averaged about 6 more points with him on the floor than with him off it. So I am not sure where your "make them a worse offensive team" bit comes in to play, when every year they are better.

They feed him because it draws in defenses and creates open shots. Orlando went from 3rd in 3pt% to 29th the minute Dwight left.

WhiteSoxGod
07-08-2013, 01:38 PM
Dwight was also a better player after the all star break because he was more healthy. That trend will continue this year. As i have posted in a couple other threads here are those stats:


Dwight Howard - Per Game
Pre All-Star 16.3 PPG -- 11.8 RPG -- 1.5 APG -- 2.3 BPG
Post All-Star 15.5 PPG -- 14.8 RPG -- 0.8 APG -- 2.6 BPG

You can see a difference in Howard's play. He has been more active on the defensive end and on the glass, and has been better in pick and rolls on the offensive end.


Dwight Howard - Rebounding
Pre All-Star OREB%: 10.8% -- DREB%: 26.5% -- REB%: 18.9%
Post All-Star OREB%: 12.5% -- DREB%: 32.1% -- REB%: 22.6%

The increase in Howard's rebounding numbers are not just based on per-game stats, which can vary based on opponent and pace of the game. If you look at Howard's rebounding percentage, he has increased the amount of available rebounds he has grabbed on both the offensive and defensive end since the All-Star break.


Dwight Howard - Advanced
Pre All-Star OffRtg: 104.0 -- DefRtg: 102.1 -- NetRtg: +1.9 -- USG%: 22.1% -- [+/- (per game)]: +35 (0.7)
Post All-Star OffRtg: 113.0 -- DefRtg: 98.7 -- NetRtg +14.3 -- USG%: 21.4% -- [+/- (per game)]: +88 (8.8)

Here you'll see that Howard's usage rate has dipped slightly -- a pair of 40+ point performances from Kobe likely contributed to that -- but his on-court plus/minus has increased dramatically. The same goes for Howard's on-court offensive and defensive efficiency -- up 9.0 points per 100 possession on offense and giving up 3.4 fewer points per 100 possessions on defense.

FOBolous
07-08-2013, 01:47 PM
well you know what? no matter what happens, the Rockets are going to be better than the Lakers next year. and the year after that cause Melo isnt going to leave NYC (HIS city) and Lebron isn't leaving Miami (Miami to Lebron is like Chicago is to MJ plus Riley's going to keep the team competitive). the best Lakers probably can get is Kevin Love and we'll see how that goes.

Chronz
07-08-2013, 02:18 PM
WOW if they get the 2nd half Howard, I can see them challenging for the 1 seed

slashsnake
07-08-2013, 02:39 PM
I can see that too Chronz. They weren't a bad team without him. They played in the tougher conference (based on their records vs. the East and West they would have been a 50 win team in the east... aka 3rd seed). Orlando was MUCH better with a healthy Howard than last season without him.

OceanSpray
07-08-2013, 02:39 PM
SAS are definitely going to be a better team.
OKC is a better team because they already have experience and with a healthy Westbrook, they are no doubt better than Houston.
LAC is a better team because CP3 and Doc with new pickups in Jared/Reddick.

Houston may be better than GSW/Memphis/Denver. And I say maybe only because we're not updated on Dwight's health and whether or not they can coexist.

RLundi
07-08-2013, 02:42 PM
LOL I thought this argument was one sided but those who think Dwight will magically revert to the beast that led Orlando to the Finals are just as blind. The Rox will not likely win the title their first year together people, and thats OK considering its year 1.

If he's fully healthy and as featured on offense as he was in Orlando, I don't see why not he can't have a similar impact.

His usage rate was the lowest it'd been since his sophomore season. His defense slipped, and idk if that was due to either motivation, injury or just inability but I don't think he'll be the same player he was last year. It was just a single season ago that he was a top 5 player. No way he's fallen that much in that spam of time for good.

KnickaBocka.44
07-08-2013, 02:42 PM
The last few days have seen an avalanche of rockets related threads and a lot of preseason hype and anticipation. Calm down. The rockets aren't ready to win a championship. Yet. Here's why:

1. Howard: has he recovered fully from back surgery? How will his shoulder hold up? Howard doesn't shy away from contact, and his ongoing health is always a concern.

I won't even speak to his psychological and emotional issues, which I find unfathomable. There will be a honeymoon period lasting up to a season (highly unlikely), but at some point the REAL Dwight will emerge to question the coaching, his teammates, the amount of pollen in the air, the guy riding his bumper during his commutes to games and practices, and god knows what else.

--

2. McHale. McHale is an inexperienced coach, and has struggled to integrate the talents of his starters. Some problems I observed:

a. The team's offensive sets often looked laughable at the start of the season--an appalling lack of cohesion between Lin and Harden and between the guards and Asik were evident.

b. Mchale seemed unable to find a way to integrate the talents of Harden and Lin; two ball dominant scorers and playmakers. Oddly, Mchale attempted to use lin as a 3 point specialist, which seemed strange, since Lin has never been a considered a great shooter, but rather a slash and kick scorer and assist man.

bi. Harden meanwhile, got off to a blazing start, then became increasingly inefficient as time wore on, with his FG% plummeting drastically. In addition, Harden, given the green light, often became a notorious ball stopper, along the lines of kobe and carmelx, turning his teammates into spectators. While McHale apparently told Howard he would hold him accountable, that was certainly not the case with harden.

--

3. Howard and Asik. If mchale had difficulties integrating lin and harden's talents, he will have yet another problem integrating asik and howard. Again, you have two players with similar, largely redundant skillsets, who don't seem to complement one another.

--

4. PF? The rockets don't have a clear cut starter at PF. Donuts is inexperienced and an offensive specialist. McHale seems to have little faith in TJ, although he is widely considered to be a very promising two way player. PF has been a revolving door for the rockets and that situation seems unlikely to change, barring yet another blockbuster move for a big name.

The rockets have two proven all nba players, and several (parsons, lin) who seem likely to break out as all stars in the next 2-3 seasons, but a lot of this hinges on mchale's ability to milk maximum contributions from every player; a talent mchale has not yet shown or developed.

The bottom line is that HOU is one move away (an all star 4) from contending for a championship.

They may also be a coaching move away as well.

If I were a betting man, I'd say 15-16 is their best chance to win it all, but ONLY IF they have acquired a top tier 4 and/or TJ and/or Donuts becomes a quality starter.

There are a lot of IF's there. The good news is, the rockets have a ton of talent, and arguably the best GM in the game. The future is very bright, but this in no way, shape or form guarantees a championship. :)


You talk about offensive sets and cohesion as if Harden didn't get traded 2 days before the season started. To expect anything like cohesion is naive on your part.

Harden is not a ballstopper, he averaged almost 6 assists per game last year.

Asik will be traded.

lol, please
07-08-2013, 02:49 PM
I agree. A real championship caliber team is a team like the Warriors.

valade16
07-08-2013, 02:50 PM
You talk about offensive sets and cohesion as if Harden didn't get traded 2 days before the season started. To expect anything like cohesion is naive on your part.

Harden is not a ballstopper, he averaged almost 6 assists per game last year.

Asik will be traded.


Why do I keep seeing this Asik will be traded comment. Didn't McHale come out and say they weren't trading Asik?

TrueFan420
07-08-2013, 03:15 PM
Why do I keep seeing this Asik will be traded comment. Didn't McHale come out and say they weren't trading Asik?

He said it but it can easily be a ploy to gain leverage. Asik said he didn't wanna play with him and that he wants out. Their are teams interested and that could provide the rockets with a better compliment to Dwight.

TrueFan420
07-08-2013, 03:16 PM
:laugh: Houston was better than the Lakers last year without Howard.

Didnt la finish with the better record?

slashsnake
07-08-2013, 03:22 PM
Didnt la finish with the better record?

Nope, Houston was 45-37 and 2-4 in the post-season for a 47-41 overall record
LA was 45-37 and 0-4 in the post-season for a 45-41 mark.

JasonJohnHorn
07-08-2013, 03:49 PM
The problem is McHale will supplicate to Howard and give him touches in the post, which is not where he is most effective and that will make the team less effective on offense. It will also likely reduce Harden's role, which I believe is their best option.

The reason Orlando made it to the finals was because SVG knew NOT to run the ball through the post as often as Howard wanted it and even then, when they were in the finals, Howard was questioning SVG publicly. This lead to an eventual parting, but should McHale use Howard effectively, it will alienate Howard and hurt the team and should he supplicate to him, it will make the team less effective. It's lose lose.

tredigs
07-08-2013, 03:50 PM
Did OP say Jeremy Lin was poise to break out into an All Star in the next couple years? Might be the 25th best point in the league. And it's an issue for them.

Anyway, what they need is bench scoring and an answer at PF. We'll see how the next month goes.

lol, please
07-08-2013, 04:00 PM
^ Exactly. A little ridiculous. And that's being generous.

Jroz
07-08-2013, 04:04 PM
LOL EXACTLY, saying 2 superstars doesn't make you at least a contender for the title is either asinine, incredibly ignorant, or just plain & simple hate.

.....was Howard and Kobe contenders last year?........

Crackadalic
07-08-2013, 04:09 PM
Upgrade pg and get a stretch 4 and they can contend

Iron24th
07-08-2013, 04:14 PM
Here are some fresh grapes the one's you are eating are very sour.

Truth hurts.

Asik's better
07-08-2013, 06:16 PM
Remember when Luis scola was the rockets best player and the rockets didnt receive any hate? Life simpler back then.

Anyway, the rockets are contenders whether people like it or not. Asik will be moved because last time I checked Dayrl Morey was the rockets GM. Yes Mchale isn't the greatest coach, however he is a good coach. He took a team that was thrown together a week before the season and coached them to the finals. He is improving. And finally terrence jones would be a good starting piece along side Howard. And to the people who say Mchale has no faith TJ, you obversely are getting him confused with Thomas Robinson.

c.c.
07-08-2013, 06:28 PM
A Laker fan created this thread right?

Lake_Show2416
07-08-2013, 06:37 PM
Rockets will b around 6th or 7th seed in the West, that's not a championship contender

Bmoss12
07-08-2013, 06:48 PM
Lakers got that Karma for screwing over the 76ers.

rockets-fan
07-08-2013, 06:54 PM
Rockets will b around 6th or 7th seed in the West, that's not a championship contender

I really want to know how this is a reasonable prediction??? They lost no one and added Dwight freakin Howard. Your telling me that only gives you 2 more wins overall? Seriously stop with the hate and be reasonable. I can't wait till the Rockets everyone up.

Teeboy1487
07-08-2013, 06:57 PM
As of right now, I think Houston is a 4th seed at best. I think they need more pieces around Howard/Harden/Parsons specifically at the PG and PF positions to compete with the Elite of the NBA. I'm not saying they need stars. They need some shooters in those positions that can be consistent.

SportsFanatic10
07-08-2013, 07:01 PM
i'd say they've definitely become a contender now, but i don't see them winning this coming season. it even took the heat a year to build around the big three by adding battier and also get the chemistry right. it'll be interesting to see how the rockets finish filling out the roster and obviously they have more flexibility then miami did with out the 3 max contracts. bottom line is they should be very good, but i agree with the train of thought that they won't be winning this year and probably not the next either since i'm not sure they'll quite have enough at that point with teams like okc/san antonio/clippers/warriors in the west. they're up there with them but i'm not convinced they're better then those teams. who knows at this point though.

numba1CHANGsta
07-08-2013, 07:05 PM
Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash>Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons

Greg.
07-08-2013, 07:20 PM
Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash>Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons

Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash<Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons
Holy ****!!! Look guy, I can do it too!!!!

SportsFanatic10
07-08-2013, 07:22 PM
Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash>Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons

not likely.

VendettaRed07
07-08-2013, 07:22 PM
They should sign some vet leaders on the cheap. Maybe billups?

rhino17
07-08-2013, 08:56 PM
Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash>Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons

You realize they had the same record last year when you had dwight and we didn't, right?

kenzo400
07-08-2013, 09:33 PM
if the lakers weren't a championship caliber team with Dwight... I can't for the life of me understand why Houston would think he makes them one.

They will be a nice team to watch though, no doubt about that.

It's because Kobe is **** now.

tredigs
07-08-2013, 09:38 PM
It's because Kobe is **** now.

Let's not kid ourselves, he was just as good as Harden. Nash is better than Lin, and Pau is still probably better than Parsons. Tho' last year it's a decent debate.

kenzo400
07-08-2013, 09:50 PM
Let's not kid ourselves, he was just as good as Harden. Nash is better than Lin, and Pau is still probably better than Parsons. Tho' last year it's a decent debate.

I was obviously joking. But on a serious note, its not about who is better player. Its about who can do more for their team and how each player impacts the game. Harden is his prime and can run twice as fast as Kobe. He makes the defense focus on him whereas Kobe is primarily a shooter now (largely due to his age) You simply cannot compare an emerging superstar like Harden in his prime to a 33 year old Kobe.

Also Pau is a completely different player from Parsons. It also doesn't help that D'Antoini didn't know how to use him. It is not a good comparison.

MonroeFAN
07-08-2013, 09:58 PM
Suggesting that they will finish 6th or 7th in the west is ridiculous. I could see them finishing 1st, but I just don't think that this roster, as-is will be able to compete with Miami and SA and the like come playoff time. Harden and Howard are incredible building blocks obviously.

To those criticizing my previous posts because the Rockets won a tie breaker last season... seriously?

Chronz
07-08-2013, 10:11 PM
To those criticizing my previous posts because the Rockets won a tie breaker last season... seriously?

Actually the Lakers won the tiebreaker. Your post was criticized for more important reasons.

magic0320
07-08-2013, 10:27 PM
You realize they had the same record last year when you had dwight and we didn't, right?

you realize lakers had bunch of starters injured, right? and still had better record.

rockets-fan
07-08-2013, 11:06 PM
you realize lakers had bunch of starters injured, right? and still had better record.

False.

LakersMaster24
07-08-2013, 11:16 PM
Rockets > Lakers.

Denver-boy
07-08-2013, 11:39 PM
You've done an amazing job of displaying both your lack of literacy as well as your deep level of butthurt in just one post. :)

Try using a dictionary next time if you don't understand the difference between a champion and a contender. :)

I dont even care for howard or Lakers or Houston, I just think the poster that made this, is complete douche, as he displays here to another poster.

Denver-boy
07-08-2013, 11:43 PM
Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash>Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons

Coach D'Antoni/Dwight/Gasol/Kobe/Nash<Dwight/Harden/Lin/Parsons/ Coach Mchale

lol D'antoni single handedly could make a team worse. the should of stayed with Mike Brown, or went with Brian Shaw like they should of.... wait hes in denver now :D

YashBoone
07-08-2013, 11:59 PM
I agree whole heartedly, but not so eloquently.

Howard doesn't have the heart of a champion, plain and simple....

Also I can't stand how the new standard in basketball is to try to form bomb squads while everyone dick rides.

Basically, I think teams being overrated and are in actuality father from a chip then most will admit are:

Clippers, Nets, rockets ....

For the past couple of seasons, I have watched as the clips have some how managed to get all kinds of talent and depth, and I think they aren't any closer to a ring now... I don't care who they ****ing sign. DJ isn't a champ .. Blake isn't a champ .. And so on down the line..

Same with lakers last year.
Every sports analyst and literally their mother had them coming out of the west, and looks at what happens..... Now they are doing the same with the nets.....

It's like people don't learn..

WhiteSoxGod
07-09-2013, 12:20 AM
Dwight was also a better player after the all star break because he was more healthy. That trend will continue this year. As i have posted in a couple other threads here are those stats:


Dwight Howard - Per Game
Pre All-Star 16.3 PPG -- 11.8 RPG -- 1.5 APG -- 2.3 BPG
Post All-Star 15.5 PPG -- 14.8 RPG -- 0.8 APG -- 2.6 BPG

You can see a difference in Howard's play. He has been more active on the defensive end and on the glass, and has been better in pick and rolls on the offensive end.


Dwight Howard - Rebounding
Pre All-Star OREB%: 10.8% -- DREB%: 26.5% -- REB%: 18.9%
Post All-Star OREB%: 12.5% -- DREB%: 32.1% -- REB%: 22.6%

The increase in Howard's rebounding numbers are not just based on per-game stats, which can vary based on opponent and pace of the game. If you look at Howard's rebounding percentage, he has increased the amount of available rebounds he has grabbed on both the offensive and defensive end since the All-Star break.


Dwight Howard - Advanced
Pre All-Star OffRtg: 104.0 -- DefRtg: 102.1 -- NetRtg: +1.9 -- USG%: 22.1% -- [+/- (per game)]: +35 (0.7)
Post All-Star OffRtg: 113.0 -- DefRtg: 98.7 -- NetRtg +14.3 -- USG%: 21.4% -- [+/- (per game)]: +88 (8.8)

Here you'll see that Howard's usage rate has dipped slightly -- a pair of 40+ point performances from Kobe likely contributed to that -- but his on-court plus/minus has increased dramatically. The same goes for Howard's on-court offensive and defensive efficiency -- up 9.0 points per 100 possession on offense and giving up 3.4 fewer points per 100 possessions on defense.

Again, by simply looking at the numbers you can see with Dwight the Rockets will be better. They lost a couple of bench players (Aaron Brooks, Carlos Delfino) and added the best Big Man in the NBA. One in which was great last year despite injury. It's like people don't want to use logic and would rather look at what they want to believe will happen instead of what is most likely.

SouthSideRookie
07-09-2013, 12:28 AM
you realize lakers had bunch of starters injured, right? and still had better record.

Kobe played in 78 of 82 games. Dwight played in 76 of 82. That's two top 10 players playing over 90% of the season. Look at their record when they had a healthy roster, better yet look at their record vs .500 teams on the road.

UnWantedTheory
07-09-2013, 12:53 AM
I don't know if that Orlando team had scrubs on it, not saying they were stacked lol, but they were okay. Certainly far more talent than LeBron had in Cleveland.

Turkoglu was one of the most dynamic players back then, Rashard and Jameer were all-stars as well, and they had the best shooters in the NBA, along with a top 5 coach.

We also have to remember that this was what 4-5 years ago, and in the much weaker eastern conference.

My thoughts exactly.


Also, I was hoping Dwight signed in Houston as I love my Texas teams, but people really need to stop overrating this guy. Damn good All-Star caliber player on a young up & coming team. That is all well & good but they will not be true contenders for at least another season or 2. Obviously that depends on what else they can pull off but atm these "2 superstars" aren't going to be enough just yet.

ztilzer31
07-09-2013, 12:59 AM
You got the rockets as an 8th seed last year. They just made a huge upgrade at Center. If they could get a power forward to stretch the floor they would be good. They also have more depth than people give them credit for.

Also Dantoni sucks I'm sorry.

How is anyone overrating Howard? He has one bad year in LA with a bunch of injured has beens and nobodies + Kobe. He had a slightly down year in a bad environment....

This is just sad. Howard is the new Lebron. Everyone just jumping on him because it's easy. LA fans especially always need someone new to hate.

NBA-GMaster
07-09-2013, 08:31 AM
You cant tell.. last year everybody was expecting Lakers to be king of the west.. All I can say is they will be exciting to watch and will be a very good team, Daryl Morey knows how to build a team..

greg_ory_2005
07-09-2013, 09:52 AM
The offseason just started and the OP is already saying that...:laugh2:

ClevelandSpider
07-09-2013, 09:53 AM
When I look at the Rockets two stars I see two players who both lack heart...Dwight, obviously, mental midget and wears his heart on his sleeve...Harden, disappeared in the biggest games of his career...to be a champion you have to have heart which neither of those two have, yet...are they a contender, yes, they'll be a top 4 seed in the West and 1 of 8 teams this season that realistically has a shot at a title, however small because we all know the Heat are gonna 3-peat...will they be a champion, no, at least not with this roster...they need to figure out what to do with Asik and Lin was one of the worst signings ever...Houston will make noise in the playoffs next 3 season but won't win anything, Howard bolts after 15-16 season and finally ends up in Brooklyn where he truly wants to be...

Jabears85
07-09-2013, 10:31 AM
The last few days have seen an avalanche of rockets related threads and a lot of preseason hype and anticipation. Calm down. The rockets aren't ready to win a championship. Yet. Here's why:

1. Howard: has he recovered fully from back surgery? How will his shoulder hold up? Howard doesn't shy away from contact, and his ongoing health is always a concern.

I won't even speak to his psychological and emotional issues, which I find unfathomable. There will be a honeymoon period lasting up to a season (highly unlikely), but at some point the REAL Dwight will emerge to question the coaching, his teammates, the amount of pollen in the air, the guy riding his bumper during his commutes to games and practices, and god knows what else.

--

2. McHale. McHale is an inexperienced coach, and has struggled to integrate the talents of his starters. Some problems I observed:

a. The team's offensive sets often looked laughable at the start of the season--an appalling lack of cohesion between Lin and Harden and between the guards and Asik were evident.

b. Mchale seemed unable to find a way to integrate the talents of Harden and Lin; two ball dominant scorers and playmakers. Oddly, Mchale attempted to use lin as a 3 point specialist, which seemed strange, since Lin has never been a considered a great shooter, but rather a slash and kick scorer and assist man.

bi. Harden meanwhile, got off to a blazing start, then became increasingly inefficient as time wore on, with his FG% plummeting drastically. In addition, Harden, given the green light, often became a notorious ball stopper, along the lines of kobe and carmelx, turning his teammates into spectators. While McHale apparently told Howard he would hold him accountable, that was certainly not the case with harden.

--

3. Howard and Asik. If mchale had difficulties integrating lin and harden's talents, he will have yet another problem integrating asik and howard. Again, you have two players with similar, largely redundant skillsets, who don't seem to complement one another.

--

4. PF? The rockets don't have a clear cut starter at PF. Donuts is inexperienced and an offensive specialist. McHale seems to have little faith in TJ, although he is widely considered to be a very promising two way player. PF has been a revolving door for the rockets and that situation seems unlikely to change, barring yet another blockbuster move for a big name.

The rockets have two proven all nba players, and several (parsons, lin) who seem likely to break out as all stars in the next 2-3 seasons, but a lot of this hinges on mchale's ability to milk maximum contributions from every player; a talent mchale has not yet shown or developed.

The bottom line is that HOU is one move away (an all star 4) from contending for a championship.

They may also be a coaching move away as well.

If I were a betting man, I'd say 15-16 is their best chance to win it all, but ONLY IF they have acquired a top tier 4 and/or TJ and/or Donuts becomes a quality starter.

There are a lot of IF's there. The good news is, the rockets have a ton of talent, and arguably the best GM in the game. The future is very bright, but this in no way, shape or form guarantees a championship. :)

Thomas Robinson?

And if the team doesn't believe he could what about packaging a trade with T. Robinson and Asik for LaMarcus Aldridge?

Something like this: http://espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine . The salary's match up

SteveZissou
07-09-2013, 10:47 AM
Why do people always make up hypothetical trade scenarios.

3RDASYSTEM
07-09-2013, 10:54 AM
I don't know if that Orlando team had scrubs on it, not saying they were stacked lol, but they were okay. Certainly far more talent than LeBron had in Cleveland.

Turkoglu was one of the most dynamic players back then, Rashard and Jameer were all-stars as well, and they had the best shooters in the NBA, along with a top 5 coach.

We also have to remember that this was what 4-5 years ago, and in the much weaker eastern conference.

TURK wasn't nowhere near a dynamic level player

he was the same good bench player in SACTOWN that got starter minutes and put up decent numbers, if he didn't have that pick n roll he wouldn't be dynamic for ****, your game is what makes you dynamic, a pick and roll makes you have a job in the league, like a spot up specialist shooter or so, see LIN on pick and roll 'dynamic'

and LIN is a d league turned forced starter in this league

NELSON made the allstar game as a sub I want to say and even if he didn't he has made 1 allstar and that was with HOWARD, without HOWARD why hasn't LEWIS/NELSON/TURK been allstars?

HARDEN is allnba player without HOWARD so how will that change since he already played with allnba players in KD/WESTBROOK? now he has a allnba interior threat which will make him more dangerous because he doesn't have to share backcourt load of handling ball like in OKC

Jabears85
07-09-2013, 11:05 AM
Why do people always make up hypothetical trade scenarios.

Because you lack creative and vision.......

WhiteSoxGod
07-09-2013, 12:51 PM
Thomas Robinson?

And if the team doesn't believe he could what about packaging a trade with T. Robinson and Asik for LaMarcus Aldridge?

Something like this: http://espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine . The salary's match up

Thomas Robinson was traded to Portland, he is no longer on the team.