What P.J. Tucker’s recent comments mean for the Rockets
By Mark Camarena
Houston Rockets veteran P.J. Tucker has been very cryptic on social media about his thoughts about the franchise and his media exchange on Monday was no different.
Along with the James Harden saga this offseason and preseason, the Houston Rockets also have a disgruntled P.J. Tucker on their hands. Throughout the weeks leading up to training camp, it appears Tucker expected a contract extension, but that did not happen. What followed was a series of Instagram posts with the theme of “loyalty”.
On Monday, P.J Tucker spoke to the media for the first time since his cryptic messages and dropped a couple of insights on how he is feeling. Tucker stated, “I want to be where I’m wanted,” and when asked if he feels the Rockets want him he recommended asking the franchise, stating, “You should ask them.”
Now what the Houston Rockets have done to Tucker to make him feel unappreciated is still a mystery, but it is not enough for Tucker to demand a trade out of Houston yet. In the media exchange, he said he has spoken to Coach Silas and everything is worked out between the two and he’s ready to return to play.
Tucker also mentioned in his press conference that it is deeper than a contract extension, so that opens up another issue. Clearly, the contract dispute bothered Tucker, but now it appears something else triggered him to halt his arrival, and appeared very uninterested Monday.
What Tucker’s words mean about the Houston Rockets
A theory that could be taken away is possible with the new system instilled by new head coach Stephen Silas, perhaps the new gameplan does not involve Tucker like his previous seasons with Houston under Mike D’Antoni. And it has Tucker feeling his value drop and now the 35-year-old is questioning his future with Houston.
Or Tucker feels that after spending last season colliding with the centers in the paint he deserved some kind of compensation. Either theory is fair and Tucker’s efforts for the Rockets have not gone unnoticed by the fanbase, as he has become a cult favorite with Houston fans. But a contract extension for his age seems farfetched for the Rockets, although the money Tucker wants has not been specified.
The best-case scenario for Tucker seems to be to keep open communication with Coach Silas, who deserves an enormous amount of credit for not showing frustration with not only the Tucker situation but the front office moves and the James Harden drama. But as long as Tucker and Silas remain on the same page the future should be fine or he will take the Harden route and find a way out.