Rockets reporter Vanessa Richardson on Eric Gordon, LeBron James, more

Houston Rockets mascot Clutch (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets mascot Clutch (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) /
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Houston Rockets
Miami Heat LeBron James Indiana Pacers Paul George #24 of the Indiana Pacers (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images) /

LeBron James and the Heat had some great matchups against the Pacers in the playoffs. What were your thoughts on those battles?

It was death, taxes, and LeBron breaking the hearts of Pacers fans. He ended our season in 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14, 2016-17, and 2017-18. I thought it was interesting during The Last Dance how people were tweeting about Michael Jordan having the same effect on them.

Many people were tweeting about how although they loved what Michael Jordan did and how fascinating he was, he’s always going to be the guy that broke their hearts, and their favorite team’s heart. For me, I feel that way about LeBron.

I love watching him play, and I know he’s in the conversation of the greatest ever. But he’s always going to be LeBron that broke the hearts of Pacers fans. And those Pacers teams were a very close-knit group.

David West was one of the strongest leaders in the locker room. Anybody who has ever played with him would tell you he’s a leader, even dating back to when he was at Xavier University. Paul George was a rising superstar, and there was Roy Hibbert, who was also huge for the Pacers.

And from these interactions with LeBron, we were blessed with one of the greatest memes ever, which is Lance Stephenson blowing in LeBron’s ear. And that is why we loved Lance Stephenson in Indiana.

But LeBron is obviously one of the greatest, and as a Pacers fan, he’s been the one who has really been frustrating.

What’s interesting about those battles is that Frank Vogel, LeBron James, and Paul George have all moved out to Los Angeles. What do you think about the Houston Rockets chances against the Lakers and/or the Clippers?

I think the Rockets are a team that can pull something out of their hat, and I really respect Mike D’Antoni as a coach. The Houston Rockets are a team with alot of potential for sure, and we’ll have to see how the small ball thing pans out.

But as much as I’d love to speculate about potential matchups and look forward to these games, I don’t know that any of them will happen. And frankly, none of us do. So we’re just going to have to wait and see, because by the time the Houston Rockets play basketball again, it could be in the fall and it could be a much different team. We just don’t know.

But I feel good about this Rockets team. Not only do they have superstars. but they have alot of pivotal pieces, in addition to a veteran presence. I think it’s going to be interesting to see what they do.

I feel good about the Rockets against the Lakers, and I think I tend to be an optimist when I cover teams. But we first have to get through this to see if there will even be a postseason series. Whether that be with neutral sites, or whatever that may be.

How different has it been covering the Western Conference compared to the Eastern Conference?

I think the obvious difference is that the Western Conference is always said to have more talent. I haven’t gotten to cover the Houston Rockets for a full season yet, but it’s been cool to cover the West after so many years of watching, covering, and working for an Eastern Conference team.

What’s been your favorite moment of the season?

There’s one that I thought was a really funny one. I loved it when Austin Rivers called for his dad to get ejected. That was gold!

Next: David West, MDA, The Last Dance