The Houston Rockets seem to be top of mind for everyone in the national media, and they are doing everything they can to tear this team apart. Will the Rockets give in to the nonsense drama, or will they stand together and “Run It Back“ next season?
You have to give the Houston Rockets credit…it is never boring with Daryl Morey as our General Manager. So far this off-season, the Rockets have been fully entrenched with multiple situations of drama surrounding their front office and roster. It appears that the drama bubble burst when Yahoo Senior NBA writer, Vincent Goodwill, sent out a splurge of tweets and videos claiming that the relationship between Chris Paul and James Harden was unsalvageable.
As you continue with this article, please note that I am not naive as to the issues that *probably* exist between James Harden and Chris Paul. James is a once in a generation kind of player, who believe that he should be the absolute focal point of the offense on every single possession. Chris Paul is a first ballot NBA Hall of Famer who is under the impression that he should be able to coach James on how he can be even better than he already is.
My issue with the situation lies within the fact that there are national writers who claim to have “sources“ that tweet things such as, “Sources tell @Yahoosports Chris Paul wants out of Houston. Relationship with James Harden deemed ‘unsalvageable.’“ On the same day that this national columnist sent this tweet out, General Manager Daryl Morey and point guard Chris Paul made comments on an Instagram post insisting that this news was news to both of them. This should have stopped the speculation that this rumor had any legs to it, but of course, it did not.
— Vincent Goodwill (@VinceGoodwill) June 18, 2019
The obvious question here is simple…Who do you believe? I am going to take the side of my general manager and starting point guard. This article is not to completely disregard what national writers who have sources within organizations have to say or speculate, but I think there is absolutely nothing to this story. If it was true, what reason would both Daryl and Chris Paul have to comment that this was “news” to both of them?
The other side of things
The other aspect of this story is that it is being reported, via Brian T. Smith of the Houston Chronicle, is that the Rockets are going to be going hard after Small Forward Jimmy Butler. In what world would it make sense to trade Chris Paul, to then go get Jimmy Butler? The best way to convince Butler to choose the Rockets is to have a pairing of Harden and Paul to pair with him, and have the ability to make a real run at the NBA Title for the 2019-2020 season and beyond.
The name at top of #Rockets’ wish list as free agency approaches: Jimmy Butler. Harden, Paul and Butler on same team next season, if Rockets can convince Butler to call Toyota Center his new NBA home.
— Brian T. Smith (@ChronBrianSmith) June 19, 2019
I will be the first person to tell you that the max contract given to Chris Paul was not the greatest of ideas for the Rockets to do, but it was a situation in which they did not have any other choice. When the team had the chance to acquire him from the Clippers, he was entering the last year of his contract.
The conversation between him and the Rockets front office had to be along the lines of, “Hey Chris, perform at a high level and we will give you a max deal.” He then proceeded to have a great year, that was cut short due to a hamstring injury and the Rockets could not get over the hump against the Warriors. Also, as the president of the player’s union, it would be a pretty smart idea to keep the guy happy so when he has conversations with other players around the league, he pains the organization in a favorable light.
No matter what, this off-season is monumental for the Rockets organization. Can they get an extension worked out for head coach Mike D’Antoni? Will Chris Paul and Clint Capela be back on the roster for next season? What happens with free agents Austin Rivers, Danuel House Jr. and Kenneth Faried? Can they pull off a deal to bring Jimmy Butler home to the state of Texas? These, among other questions, will have answers soon enough.
Buckle up Rockets fans!!! As always, GO ROCKETS!!!