2. Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta in the news for the right reasons
Following the Houston Rockets’ trade saga regarding James Harden, in which Harden made it a point to be as difficult as possible to facilitate his exit, Fertitta announced that Harden’s jersey number would be retired, which seems like a no-brainer considering all that Harden did for the franchise, but Fertitta made this decision when the wound was still fresh and open (if you will), which surely gave his reputation a boost.
Fertitta was also asked about the Houston Rockets’ dreary season, which saw them go 17-55, as they were ravaged by injuries and forced to play 30 different players (an NBA record). Fertitta’s comments towards the Rockets’ rebuild show an owner that sees the big picture and long gain of rebuilding organically with no interruptions and/or attempted short cuts.
“I’m going to be patient. I know my basketball guys know what they’re doing. We’re not going to go do something stupid to try to get into the playoffs next year that then will prevent us from competing for a championship in a couple years.
We’re going to be patient. I think we’ll be much better next year and we’ll be much better the following year and then we’ll be much better the following year.”
Fertitta also gave his blessing to Rockets head coach Stephen Silas, who endured more than he could have imagined in his first season as head coach.
“Silas has just shown a great ability to develop these guys, and he’s had thrown at him something that’s unprecedented: All these injuries happened this year.
This will never happen again. It’s hard to believe we were 11-10 and then all the injuries started.
I think he’s handled it unbelievably. It was hard on everybody.”
Fertitta also gave a vote of confidence towards Rockets GM Rafael Stone.
“My people have shown all they’ve done so far is made the right decision, and I’m proud of all of them. I’m proud of the basketball ops people and I’m proud of Silas, because they keep showing me they’re doing the right things.”
For many owners, having the worst record in the NBA would cause a major shake-up, which oftentimes can do more harm than good, especially considering the circumstances. Fortunately Fertitta isn’t falling into that category.
Next: No. 1