Rockets’ Mike D’Antoni finally speaks on coaching speculation

Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

With rampant rumors regarding the Houston Rockets’ coaching situation, current coach Mike D’Antoni finally spoke out.

The Houston Rockets and head coach Mike D’Antoni have had a well-documented foray of contract negotiations, as the Rockets made an offer that MDA and his agent declined last summer. We’ve since heard that the Rockets are prepared to move on from D’Antoni and the Rockets have even been linked to free agent coaches Jeff Van Gundy and Tom Thibodeau.

It seems like every headline that’s generated from the national media has the Rockets moving on from D’Antoni after the season, as we’ve seen respectable writers suggest a split is all but guaranteed. Rockets general manager Daryl Morey has given off a much different vibe as it pertains to the coaching search, which has seemingly gone unnoticed.

But we haven’t heard D’Antoni speak out about the rumors of him parting ways with the Rockets, which has perhaps been most important in all of this.

Mike D’Antoni speaks out about Rockets coaching speculation.

D’Antoni changed that on Sunday, as he was on KHOU’s Sports Extra and made it clear that he’s not exactly worried about the reports, while making it known that he wants to be in Houston for the foreseeable future.

“You guys have way too much time on your hands. I haven’t thought about that. I’m thinking about the team and trying to get them ready. I think it’s natural that it does come up, but it’s not relevant right now. The great thing is the city is terrific, the team is terrific, the ownership and fans is terrific. So everything is good, nothing is bad and we’ll see where it goes.

I’m going to live here the rest of the time. Whether I have to take a brief job some place else, we’ll see what happens. But I want to be here no doubt, and this is a great town. My wife has really become close to the community leaders and trying to get things done and we love being here, so what else could you ask for?”

D’Antoni has a big part to play in this, as his agent Warren LeGarie has been the dividing force between the Houston Rockets and a new deal taking place with the most-winningest coach in franchise history. So one would think if D’Antoni ultimately wants to be in Houston that his representation would have to comply with his request.

As he mentions, his wife Laurel D’Antoni has certainly played a large part in the Houston community, as she helped raise $1.4 million following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. In addition, she has also helped make Thanksgiving a memorable holiday for the less fortunate for several years now.

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We’ll have to see what happens between MDA and the Rockets, but a good piece of advice would be to ignore the national media as it pertains to his contract situation with the Rockets. D’Antoni’s comments, coupled with what we’ve heard from the Rockets’ brass tell a far different tale.