Why Daryl Morey is the reason the Rockets are awful

N.B. Lindberg
Orlando Magic v Houston Rockets
Orlando Magic v Houston Rockets / Tim Warner/GettyImages
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Microball was Morey at his best and worst

Instead of scouring the market for a low-cost shooting big, Morey got creative and decided centers weren’t the center of the basketball universe. The Rockets turned Clint Capela and a first-round pick into Robert Covington. The final product was titled microball, and it largely worked as intended. 

Unfortunately, microball was more about making the Russell Westbrook experiment work and less about making the Rockets serious contenders. There is some logic in trying to unlock your second-best player to improve your ceiling, but Westbrook’s improved scoring efficiency didn’t improve the overall offense and significantly hurt their defense. 

The Rockets would win their first-round playoff series against the surprising Oklahoma City Thunder led by a resurgent Chris Paul but were ousted by the eventual champion Los Angeles Lakers. From there, everything fell apart, and Morey jumped shipped. He knew what was coming, and instead of cleaning up the mess he created, he decided to “spend some time with his family” until another contender wanted his all-in for a championship brand of management.