Completing the inaugural series on the best reader responses to Space City Scoop articles the Editor offers the Houston Rockets Fan post of the year.
The readers have been active, insightful and passionate on a variety of topics. This next response however proved to be our choice for Fan Post of the Year.
And with no further adieu the best fan post goes to: Weirdbeard and his response to an article the Editor wrote asking if Morey had put analytics ahead of character.
Fan Post of the Year
Response to: Has Houston Rockets GM Morey put analytics ahead of character
Weirdbeard, one of Space City Scoop’s favorite posters provided this insightful response to the above article:
My short answer is, “Yes”. That said, in my opinion, there are two main areas that Morey needs to improve on.
1. Player Selection: There’s been mountains of divergent comments made regarding the Rocket’s roster throughout the season. No need to re-hash who’s producing and who’s not. That’s a task for the off-season. There are definitely chemistry issues and some roster changes are clearly warranted. But while those changes are being decided upon, I think Tamberlyn’s main point in this article is a key to how to put that team together. To whit:
“…reporters asked Gregg Popovich what kinds of qualities the Spurs look for in players (and staff), and his response was long, enlightening, and, oddly, inspiring (via ESPN’s Baxter Holmes):
“For us, it’s easy. We’re looking for character, but what the hell does that mean? We’re looking for people — and I’ve said it many times — [who] have gotten over themselves, and you can tell that pretty quickly. You can talk to somebody for four or five minutes, and you can tell if it’s about them, or if they understand that they’re just a piece of the puzzle. So we look for that. A sense of humor is a huge thing with us.
You’ve got to be able to laugh. You’ve got to be able to take a dig, give a dig — that sort of thing. And [you have to] feel comfortable in your own skin that you don’t have all the answers. [We want] people who are participatory. The guys in the film room can tell me what they think of how we played last night if they want to. [Former Assistant GM] Sean Marks would sit in on our coaches’ meetings when we’re arguing about how to play the pick-and-roll or who we’re going to play or who we’re going to sit.
“We need people who can handle information and not take it personally because in most of these organizations, there’s a big divide. All of the sudden, the wall goes up between management and coaching and everybody is ready to blame back and forth and that’s the rule rather than the exception. It just happens. But that’s about people. It’s about finding people who have all of those qualities. So, we do our best to look for that and when somebody comes, they figure it out pretty quick.”
To that I can only say, “Amen”.
2. Coaching: But all of this (roster changes) is meaningless if your head coach doesn’t have the cooperation and respect of the players. If he refuses to play valuable players, does play non-productive players, doesn’t substitute effectively, uses ill advised player combinations and stands idly by while substitution is called for, you could still potentially be screwed, even with the best roster in the NBA. As per Larry Bird in reference to his current head coach:
“But I also think he’s got to start going after guys when they’re not doing what they’re supposed to do. And stay on them, whether you’ve got to take them out of the game when they’re not doing what they’re supposed to do or limit their minutes. I will say, he hasn’t done that enough.”
Which brings me full circle to my pet peeve of this season. Accept that Bickerstaff is not the man for this team. Unfortunately, our best bet (in my opinion) left the building headed for Minnesota, taking my fondest hopes for change along with him… As per a past comment:
“BRING IN TOM THIBODEAU! Van Gundy isn’t gonna cut it. We need a coach who’s abilities include BOTH offensive finesse with hard-nosed defense. To quote from Aaron Ferguson’s article on available coaches this summer.
More from Space City Scoop
- Rockets: Time to return the slander towards Rachel Nichols
- What the Rockets must do with the second overall pick
- Houston Rockets: The case for, and against, trading Christian Wood
- NBA Rumors: Why the Houston Rockets shouldn’t trade up to no. 1 in NBA Draft
- 3 players that would be a perfect fit for the Houston Rockets at 23 or 24
“While Thibodeau is known as a defensive specialist, Van Gundy was drawn to Thibodeau’s “innovative offensive sets” and “player development skills… Thibodeau played a crucial part in the development of centers Yao Ming and Joakim Noah.” Like Capela maybe? We need help on both sides of the ball. Cut the B.S. and bring in a proven team builder and no-nonsense leader.”
So I don’t know if Morey is going to be able to provide a short term answer to Houston’s problems, but a change in tactics is most definitely called for.
Congratulations to Weirdbeard and thank you for all your amazing responses to the writers posts this season. If you ever want to jump from commenting to becoming a regular writer on the site we would love to add you to the team.
Make sure you check out the current Space City Scoop series including our year end player analysis, draft prospects worthy of Rockets picking or trading for and our end of season Rockets Round Table:
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