Houston Rockets GM Rafael Stone inherited a mess of a situation in 2020, as the franchise was in utter disarray. The Rockets were strapped for cash, due to the supermax contracts of both Russell Westbrook and James Harden and didn't have practically any draft picks, as Stone's predecessor Daryl Morey didn't value draft picks, which was proven time and time again.
The Rockets also didn't have a head coach, as Mike D'Antoni, the winningest coach in franchise history, decided against returning to Houston amid failed contract negotiations with ownership.
The franchise was coming off of a 2019-20 campaign that saw the team get significantly outplayed by the eventual champion Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Semifinals in 2020 and the team had no real way of improving.
Although the Rockets have seemingly undergone a successful rebuild, GM Rafael Stone has made several puzzling moves along the way.
And especially after word got out that Harden and Westbrook wanted to play elsewhere. All that seems like water under the bridge now, as the Rockets are three years removed from the circus that was the 2020 offseason (thank God).
The Rockets are now in prime position to take a leap, as the team had an action-packed offseason this summer. Now that we have three years of data on Stone and the franchise is ascending into what's been termed "phase two" of their rebuild, let's take a look at Stone's worst moves since taking over the Rockets three years ago, much like we once did with Stone's predecessor.
Side note: Holding on to Eric Gordon for 200 years didn't make the cut because I've already covered that.