Before beginning my annual process of circling three Rockets games from the future to which I’m most looking forward to viewing, a few roadblocks had to be broken down. And by a few, I really mean one gigantic brick wall of uncertainty standing in the way of a clear opinion: the roster.
Thus far, Houston’s offseason has been one of personnel fluidity—rumors, hopes, disappointment, and excitement, all wrapped in about a two month span. However, this past week a lot of the day dreams changed when Jeremy Lamb, Royce White, and Terrence Jones signed their first NBA contracts. As far as I know, players signed to rookie deals aren’t allowed to be traded for 30 days upon putting ink to paper on their first contracts, meaning those three are now off the table in any Dwight Howard/Superstar X trade possibility for the time being, giving Houston’s 2012-13 roster a clearer outline. (Once again, for the time being.) Taking this into account then including the team’s two major free agent acquisitions—Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik—a temporarily suitable roster can now be made. [read more…]
Back in March, when I started this series, it seemed unfathomable that neither player would be employed by the Houston Rockets come July. That is now where we stand. Both Kyle Lowry and Goran Dragic, each deemed future All-Stars and considered franchise cornerstones at some point, have moved on. What seemed a decision between these two ended in Linsanity.
Except in the die-hard Internet refuges, all month, I’ve seen and heard nothing but mockery for the Rockets’ pursuit and eventual signing of center Omer Asik. The criticism is a bit difficult to understand. Had they had Magic center Dwight Howard already in the fold, I do think Rockets management would have opted to spend Asik’s money elsewhere or hoped the Bulls would match. But that one of the game’s best players would make Asik’s skillset redundant doesn’t mean this was cash ill-spent. With it looking more unlikely that Howard lands in Houston, this bird-in-hand was well worth his $8million/year pricetag and at just 26, should be a major building block for the team going forward.
The Orlando Magic have told rival executives that they might not trade Dwight Howard after all, according to league sources.
An executive who has had discussions with the Magic regarding Howard said Orlando only will trade the star center in a deal that is great for the franchise. The executive said this has been Orlando’s stance for the past “week or so.”
And so it seems that, at least for now, this Dwightmare will not be ending anytime soon.
A quick story to start off: the presser was scheduled to kick off at 4PM today so, knowing that it would be the largest gathering since the 2004 Republican National Convention, I left work at 3:15. (I work downtown and am five minutes from the Toyota Center.) As I’m turning the corner at Louisiana, two officers on horseback seem to have piqued interest in my presence amidst traffic. I make the turn left, very slowly, and continue onward, thinking nothing of it, assuming it’s my imagination. I glance rearview and both creatures are behind me. I focus on the road. As I pull up to the light, I’m immediately surrounded by the hideous beasts. Conversation ensues; I’m told my registration has expired. While awaiting the final decree, it hits me that I’ve been rung up by a cop riding a horse. This sort of stuff hasn’t happened since the 1800’s. No one I know anywhere, ever has had this happen. How completely humiliating. For this I’m late.