Prominent NBA analyst cites caution for Rockets' Nick Nurse pursuit

Toronto Raptors v Houston Rockets
Toronto Raptors v Houston Rockets / Takashi Aoyama/GettyImages

The Houston Rockets' coaching situation has been marred with speculation, particularly as the season winds down. Will they decline Stephen Silas' option for his final season?

Will he step down, absent an extension, to prevent being in a lame-duck situation? Will he get an extension?

The latest whispers have been that the front office is interested in current Toronto Raptors coach Nick Nurse, who may be ready to leave the Raps. Nurse's links to the Rockets are impossible to overlook, as he previously coached the Rockets' G-League affiliate Rio Grande Vipers (formerly D-League), where he guided the team to the 2013 D-League championship.

But should there be cause for concern for the Rockets, as it pertains to Nurse as a coaching candidate? The answer is yes, according to Joe House of The Ringer, who had a lot to say about Nurse's coaching performance with this year's Raptors on Sirius XM's NBA Weekend.

Prominent NBA analyst cites caution for Houston Rockets, as it pertains to Nick Nurse

"I've been completely confounded by this Raptors team all season long. I thought that they were very well-poised to be bumping into the upper echelon of the East because of the formula they had last year.

They had all these guys that are between 6'8 and 6'10 and no center and they played relentless defense, they got out on the perimeter, and they crashed the offensive boards and they generated points by their defensive pressure and by getting offensive boards.

And neither one of those ingredients are a part of what this team has at its core this year and it's the same team.

I know they've had their injuries. Some aspect of that team approach over the summer, over the beginning of the season went south and I don't have a good explanation for why those effort attributes have diminished over the course of the season."

House mentioned that although the Raptors have been a 39-win team, he had them penciled in the upper 40s for their win total, and suggested that part of the issues could be potential discord between Nurse, the organization, and the players.

The concerns seem valid, as the Raptors appeared to be on the up-and-up after overachieving in 2021-22, only to be a play-in team one year later. But there's a school of thought as it pertains to the Rockets that Nurse couldn't do any worse than Silas's 19-60 record. Not to mention the fact that Nurse has a NBA championship under his belt.

The one thing that's certain is that the chatter linking Nurse to the Rockets won't go away any time soon, as especially if the Raptors disappoint in the playoffs.