Rockets’ Daryl Morey talks feud with Termine, mortgaging the future, and more

Houston Rockets Daryl Morey (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets Daryl Morey (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /
6 of 8
Houston Rockets
Houston Rockets Daryl Morey (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /

Mortgaging future for the present

It’s safe to say Morey is willing to take chances and risk it all. It’s been proven that if Morey believes there’s a star player to be had, he’s willing to go all in for said player, regardless of the cost.

We especially saw this during the trade that sent Chris Paul from the LA Clippers to the Houston Rockets, as Morey sent Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams, and Montrezl Harrell all for CP3, which are all key players for the Clips in the third season following the trade.

Morey has made no qualms about his willingness to include draft picks in deals as well, which was on display during the 2018-19 season in which the Rockets were trying to land Jimmy Butler from the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Rockets were famously offering four first-round picks for Jimmy Butler, which was surprisingly turned down by the Minnesota Timberwolves. This left many to wonder why Morey was willing to pay such a high price for one player, which Morey explained to Lowe:

“I don’t understand the teams that hang onto their [draft] picks when they’re close like this.

Generally when teams drop out of contention, the average time it takes to get back to contention is eight years, we’ve looked at this. And that’s when you get back.

So when you’re out, you’re out. When you’re in, you should go for it.”

This is the first time we’ve heard Morey speak on this, and it’s something Rockets fans surely wanted to hear him explain. The Rockets have traded away a combined seven first-round draft picks dating back to the 2017-18 season, which includes their picks from 2019, 2020, 2021, 2024, 2025, and 2026.

On top of that, the Rockets have also parted with a boatload of second round picks, which includes 2020, 2021, 2022, and 2023. This is a bit of a different story, as the Rockets have reeled in several second-rounders in return, as a result of several trades, and have several pick swaps as well.

We know Morey is willing to give up whatever draft capital is necessary if it allows him to bring in a star, or anyone he feels can contribute and improve the team’s title chances. For that, he deserves praise, as not many GM’s around the league have proven to be willing to go all in to the extent that Morey has.

The fact that the T-Wolves rejected the Rockets’ monsoon of draft picks reflects the lack of value future draft picks have, as it pertains to landing a star player. From that standpoint, it makes sense for Morey to get rid of draft assets.

It hasn’t costed the Rockets a playoff berth, as they’ve not missed the postseason since acquiring James Harden. Granted, it’s hard to envision the Rockets’ future, with so many draft picks being shipped away, but the Rockets’ championship window is now, considering how there aren’t anymore super teams in the league.

So why worry about the future? The Toronto Raptors applied the same “win-now” mentality by trading for Kawhi Leonard, and it landed them a championship.

Next: Feud with Termine