Huq’s Pen: Ramblings from June 9

  • I couldn’t think of a title because I honestly have no idea where I’m going with this post.  When you haven’t written in some time, you just feel an urge to dump everything out at once rather than focus immediately on one topic.  So this could be about the Parsons contract, about Lebron, or even about the new X-Men movie.
  • To the above point, I apologize deeply for having abandoned you all for the past few weeks since the Rockets’ elimination from the postseason.  I had some other projects which required my attention, but more importantly, after the manner in which Houston’s season ended, I just needed a mental health break.
  • I’m so glad the Heat won and I’m so glad Lebron did well.  I’ve never particularly enjoyed watching James play but I became a big fan of his after The Decision just simply in reaction to the stupidity surrounding him.  People become all sorts of stupid when discussing the topic of Lebron James and that held true once again after Game 1 of the Finals.  But I won’t waste any more of this space addressing that.
  • I’ve been saying this every year for like ten years now, so it doesn’t even hold any meaning, but man, “The NBA Finals are back!”  As I noted, in reality, they’ve been back for quite some time now, but the point needs to be underscored.  I guess the source of my amazement/appreciation is the fact that the final series was a dud throughout my childhood and adolescence, years you could call my formative period, so my mental associations with certain things are engrained.  The Jordan years were obviously a treat, but after that, people my age grew up in an era where the Western Conference Finals was dubbed “the real finals”, with East representatives such as the Iverson 76ers, Lebron’s Cavs, the Sprewell Knicks, the Nets, and the Pacers.  Man, we had some absolutely dreadful Finals’.  But its been an absolute event now, as it was intended to be, for quite some time now, to the point where I don’t think most basketball fans even allow themselves to miss a single minute.  I’m too lazy to look it up, but I guess this run of “good Finals” started in 2004 with the Pistons’ upset of the Lakers.

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The Rockets Daily – June 4, 2014

Door #2 - On the eve of the 2014 NBA Finals, still haunted by Damian Lillard every time I close my eyes at night, it’s finally time to come out of hiding and talk some Rockets.

Houston has made the first big personnel move of the not-quite-here-yet offseason by declining the final year of Chandler Parsons’ rookie contract, making him a restricted free agent this summer.

The Rockets hold a $960,000 option on the fourth and final year of Parsons’ contract for the 2014-’15 season, but want to avoid letting Parsons, 25, become an unrestricted free agent next summer. As a restricted free agent in July, the Rockets can match an offer sheet and retain Parsons on a long-term contract.

The Rockets have until June 30 to formally decline the option.       Read More »

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On the NBA: Rings won in July

It seems unlikely that the Indiana Pacers will return. The Miami Heat killed them last night, did they not? Their assassination came through the Heat’s indifference; Lance Stephenson’s attempts to enter LeBron James’ head were met with a shrug and more excellence. Roy Hibbert has had skill stolen by Nerdlucks once again, he’s a toppling structure surrounded by teeming pros. Any rhetorical effort made toward convincing ourselves the Heat weren’t this much of a shoo-in was clearly for naught.

How has the Eastern Conference gotten to this weak of a point? How can it be possible?

As a new, harsher generation of ownership takes the wings of NBA franchises, perhaps it won’t be this way for much longer. Fans of parity and reasonable Atlantic bedtimes should hope that trigger-happy fundmen like Robert Pera and Joe Lacob sell out their cupboards of talent and send their intelligent front-office men out for new contracts.

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Owned and operated: why Houston should be glad for Rockets’ owner

If there’s one takeaway for the Houston Rockets in the weeks since their last game, it’s that it could be so much worse. Losing in spectacular fashion is going to sting, and it’s going to sting for about a year. There are coaching problems and personnel problems and discipline problems. There are good reasons for doubt about Houston’s future, but at least the Rockets don’t have to worry about their owner. It’s increasingly clear that having an owner that does no harm to the franchise is more of a luxury than an expectation, something the Rockets and their fans should be thankful for.

The struggles the Los Angeles Clippers have had regarding their ownership have been both televised and undeniable. There’s nothing to be said about Donald Sterling that hasn’t already been said, so let’s say it again. Recent events kicked off with the public release of a recording of Sterling, a recording in which he was heard not only making overtly racist remarks, but also commenting about a seemingly racist community he was part of. This spurred a tide of anti-sterling sentiment, something that was decades in the making. While his comments were hideous, there was already a litany of reasons to want him out of the NBA.

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Kevin Love and a trip to the trade machine

Quick heads up, the Houston Rockets have been connected via trade rumors to a major star. This is the fourth time in four summers, and the last two actually went through, so maybe there’s a pattern emerging. After not landing a franchise caliber player in at least nine minutes, Houston’s due for another one, right? That being the case, let’s take a journey down the trade machine rabbit hole, laying out the ways that the Rockets could pick up that next piece.

Target numero uno right now appears to be Kevin Love, the floor spacing power foward that Houston has been (not) secretly pining after for years. He’s big, he’s tall, he shoots threes at a crazy clip and his outlet passes are based on some kind of superpowers that mankind can barely comprehend. There’s only one solution for star players who want out of their current teams: come to Houston! Beards are en vogue in H-town, which should suit Mr. Love just fine.

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