in game coverage

The Rockets’ Recent Struggles

On Monday night, the Rockets finally broke out of their losing slump with a six-point win over the lowly Bobcats. Prior to this victory, Houston had lost seven consecutive games and squandered much of the cushion they had built for themselves earlier in the season. What, if anything, was the cause of the Rockets’ recent slump, and are there any implications for the season going-forward?

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in essays

Ranking Houston’s Players As Trade Chips

Hasn’t it felt over these last few years like the Houston Rockets were an organization hell bent on making trades for the sake of, well, making trades? Rolling dice until a pair of sixes stared back from the table?

Of course their moves weren’t that simpleminded; serious logic played a major part in every transaction they participated in. Each trade was a move on the Chess board to try and acquire a foundational superstar talent. They needed cap space, they needed assets, and they needed luck. [read more…]






in essays

The Daily Blast – January 23, 2012

Table Talk – Chandler Parsons said the Rockets had a players only dinner after the Minnesota game to talk about losing. No word on where they ate, but I’d put money on The Cheesecake Factory.

Revolving Door – Terrence Jones is back from the D-League (scroll to the bottom of the article), where he averaged 19.1 points and 9.8 rebounds.  He’s switching places with Donatas Motiejunas who averaged 23.5 points and 10.8 rebounds in his first stint in the valley.

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in columns

Much has been made of post-Collective Bargaining Agreement days of the NBA, which, with all its new tricks to managing salary caps and free agency, have even the most casual of fans thinking more often like businessmen than as fans of the game—assessing the success with which a team handles this new landscape on a season-to-season basis has become at least as popular as complaining about defensive effort.

(Join the conversation by taking a spin with this cool new toy).

And there’s plenty of truth to the thinking: the new rules make individual players into franchises in a way quite fitting to the personal-brand-affirming Facebook Era, as more of them are journeymen than ever before, and must constantly fight for another salary. The Houston Rockets’ core trio is made of players who, one year ago, were considered untouchable by their franchises. The Dallas Mavericks start O.J. Mayo, one of many short-term salaries they’ve taken on since disassembling its championship team after Mark Cuban decided that the CBA made them too expensive to keep together—and Mayo is playing the best basketball of his career; probably because he knows he’ll have to, if he wants to sign good contracts (he is playing considerably below market value on a two-year, 4 million/year deal).

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in columns

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