1. Ime Udoka
Ime Udoka has been a godsend for the Rockets' franchise, as he's simply been amazing. Udoka has been given the ability to impose his vision, which has been to clamp opponents defensively and give maximum effort on both ends of the floor.
Udoka, a former player, hasn't been afraid to hold players accountable, so much that he's pulled players when they've taken questionable shots. Udoka has also pulled players from the starting lineup when they weren't playing well.
For example, Udoka yanked Jabari Smith Jr. from the closing lineup, in favor of Jeff Green, which resulted in a victory. Udoka also pulled Jalen Green in Sunday's loss to the Golden State Warriors, as he opted to play Aaron Holiday for the entire fourth quarter.
Both players utilized the opportunity to learn and improve upon their play. Just listen to Smith explain his thoughts of the benching and you can easily tell that Udoka is effectively getting his message across.
Udoka spends a considerable amount of time talking to Jalen Green throughout the games, as he's instilled confidence and seized every opportunity to give Green legitimate coaching and mentorship, which he hasn't quite had since entering the league.
At least, not to this degree.
Udoka has the Rockets and their fans believing that they can be one of the better teams in the West, simply because he's at the helm.