I know I post alot of this team, but man! We beat the Lakers, Cavs, Trailblazers, and Jazz already. Lost last second to Hawks and Blazers too. Forced overtime against LA. How many teams can say they beat all those teams or were that close...? This team is good, without their Stars. Imagine if we can get...say Joe Johnson? Yao back healthy giving us at least 16 and 8. Don't know what to expect of him, but at least that. Heck if we get 20 and 10 from him still then great. We got money to spend with McGrady 22 million off the books. Scola will need to be resgined. Thoughts?
I think the Rockets are getting a lot from their back up bigs, namely Carl Landry and Chuck Hayes.
Hayes is a defensive monster, 6-6 240, but gets the job done. If he can get better offensively, he'll be the ultimate role player that every team wants.
Landry is great on offense and on the boards, he has added a consistent mid-range jumper to his game, and he is averaging 16 and 6 off the bench with only 26mins per game.
One thing I really like to see though, is that T-Mac can comeback health, not to say he can go back to his old form, but at least a decent scorer. It is very unlikely he will stay in Houston, but I just hate to see a great players' career end by injuries.
If Yao can comeback healthy next season, and Rockets can add some pieces in the off-season, Houston will be scary next year.
Their bigs, Landry and Hayes, and smalls, Lowry and Brooks, are some of the best combos in the league.
They don't have cap room for a max contract the cap will be around 54-55 million Rockets at 43 already next year without Lowry and Scola. Yao isn't opting out or else they'd have close to 30 million to spend on 2 big names.
I told everyone the Rockets would be playoff contenders and most were picking the freakin Warriors and their 10 small forwards that don't play D over a veteran, playoff-tested team.
the rockets are in a great spot. Right now, they are actually under contract next year for about 39 million (44 if they pick up options on Lowry and Hayes). That leaves them with between 10-15 million under the cap to work with and you know teams can always go over, so yeah they could sign a big name max level guy if they wanted. They have a bright future, but Yao determines a lot of what happens next year.
I think this year's version of the Houston Rockets are the perfect illustration of 2 things that happen so often in sports.
1. When everyone thinks a team will fall apart because their superstar is injured, everyone else raises the level of their game to a new level.
2. In basketball, team chemistry is critical and often makes up for a lack of individual talent. For whatever reason, it appears as if Houston's team chemistry is clicking on all cylinders.
When I was in high school, I always said, as a sophomore, all I need is a chance to show people how good I really am. I never could because the guys in front of me were really really good so I only logged about 8 minutes of varsity time. A guy went down with a hurt ankle and I stepped in his spot and never looked back. That is exactly what the Rockets have done. T-Mac and Yao went down and Ariza/Scola/Hayse/Landry/Brooks/Lowry/Battier/ect stepped in a never looked back. It makes me wonder if they shouldnt try to trade Yao and forget about T-Mac. IDK. Its a good story though.