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Chris Paul Dealing With Right Foot Soreness

May 23, 2018 9:41 AM

Chris Paul has been dealing with right foot soreness since Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals.

Paul responded well to treatment before Game 4. Paul scored 27 points in the game.

"Chris felt better. His foot felt better," D'Antoni said. "I called him after Game 3, and he said, 'Coach, I'm telling you, if I can get my foot right, we'll beat these guys.' Lo and behold, he got his foot right. And just like I said, we're back to even."

The Rockets haven't listed Paul on the official injury report during the series, and he had been evasive when asked about his health.

Paul acknowledged Tuesday night that he had undergone "a whole lot of treatment" in recent days.

"It's about as good as it's going to be right now," Paul said. "But for us, it's not about that. It's about going out there and getting stops and making big plays when we needed to."

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Chris Paul, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Injury

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Mike D'Antoni Regrets Not Having Steve Nash Score More

May 22, 2018 10:21 AM

Mike D'Antoni believes the Phoenix Suns would have been even better during his tenure had he not been so determined to have Steve Nash play the role of a traditional point guard.

With James Harden and Chris Paul playing more isolation basketball with the Houston Rockets, we are seeing the evolution of D'Antoni's process.

"Oh, without a doubt, I screwed that up," D'Antoni said. "Nash was a purist. Steve's a Hall of Fame point guard. He was unbelievably good. I just think instead of averaging 15 or 16 [points], he could have averaged 30 for us. He was that good of a shooter, and I don't think it would have screwed the team up."

Nash averaged 12.4 field goal attempts and 4.1 3-point attempts per game during his four seasons with D'Antoni. 

"If they even give a hint of going under [the screen], just whap it," D'Antoni said. 

"We know better now," Nash said. "The math's been validated, and I think that's why point guards are so aggressive. It makes sense. We stuck to our traditional values, and that allowed me to stick to my personality, whereas I should have come further and further out of my personality.

"Yeah, I should have probably shot the ball 20 times a game. It probably would have made a lot more sense, but at the time, we weren't ready for that league-wide. Everyone was telling us that you can't win shooting all those 3s, and now we realize that we didn't shoot enough, especially when we were playing small. So, yeah, I think Mike's right. I regret it, too.

"But it really wasn't my personality and the culture of the game wasn't ready for that. So it was like a bridge too far, so to speak, at the time."

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Houston Rockets, Phoenix Suns, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Rockets Were Optimistic About Trade For Carmelo Anthony Before Phil Jackson's Exit

May 16, 2018 12:18 PM

The Houston Rockets pursued a trade for Carmelo Anthony last offseason and sources say they were optimistic at one point that a three-way deal would be agreed upon with the New York Knicks and Portland Trail Blazers.

The talks with the Knicks, however, fizzled, after the exit of Phil Jackson after the draft and before the start of free agency.

The Rockets' potential trade for Anthony had no impact on their interest in signing P.J. Tucker and Luc Mbah a Moute in free agency.

James Harden began to recruit Tucker days after their season ended as they hung out together in Atlanta.

"Yo, you're coming to Houston," Harden told him then, according to Tucker. "We need what you do."

Anthony was eventually traded to the Thunder in a package for Enes Kanter.

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: Carmelo Anthony, Houston Rockets, New York Knicks, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Trade Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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Daryl Morey: James Harden Makes My Job Easy On Floor, Off Floor

May 16, 2018 12:12 PM

Daryl Morey credits James Harden with making his job as general manager of the Houston Rockets easy both on and off the court.

"James was everything," Morey said. "Not only is he a great player on the floor, but he's someone who's just focused on winning and is willing to do anything to make it happen, whether it be meet with people, call them, text them, whatever is required. He makes my job easy."

Harden helped convince Chris Paul to join the Rockets last offseason.

Paul doesn't recall who was first to reach out, but he quickly found common ground with Harden. Paul and Harden began to talk almost daily. Trevor Ariza helped reinforce Harden's pitch.

"It was just watching the landscape of the league and talking about having fun," Paul said. "So far, so good. Still got a lot of work to do, but regardless, I'm having the most fun I've had in a long time."

Morey didn't hesitate in dealing Patrick Beverley, Lou Williams and a first round pick to the Clippers for Paul.

"I say sometimes flippantly that there isn't really a superstar store in the NBA where you get to go and pick out which one you want," Morey said. "You have to jump on the opportunities as they come and sometimes make them fit.

"But in this case, we didn't really have to [make them fit]. The fit was really incredible from day one."

 

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Tags: James Harden, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Mike D'Antoni Calls Houston's Offense 'James & Chris Seconds Or Less'

May 14, 2018 4:45 PM

The Houston Rockets have taken some of the principles of Mike D'Antoni's offense but play at a much slower pace.

The Rockets' average time of possession is 12.45 seconds, which is slightly faster than the NBA average of 12.67 seconds.

The Rockets attempt to play to the strengths of James Harden and Chris Paul.

"James and Chris seconds or less," said D'Antoni as to what he calls his offense now.

"Very rigid—until he got Harden," said Alvin Gentry. "And then he got Chris Paul."

Gentry, who was an assistant under D'Antoni, believes his former boss would prefer to play faster.

"If you're asking me what he would rather do, he would rather be running up and down the court and spreading the court and doing a lot of things like that," said D'Antoni.

"I think he sees that as basketball."

Howard Beck/Bleacher Report

Tags: James Harden, Chris Paul, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA B-Ball IQ

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Andre Iguodala Dodges Question About Meeting With Rockets In Free Agency

May 12, 2018 10:37 AM

Andre Iguodala met with the Houston Rockets in free agency last offseason before eventually re-signing with the Golden State Warriors.

Iguodala was asked how close he was to joining the Rockets in free agency ahead of Golden State's Western Conference Finals matchup.

"I don't remember none of that from last summer," Iguodala said with a smile on his face. "At the end of the day, it's all business. Every story turns into business, so ... I don't know man. I don't remember man.

"I can't get too deep right now because then it would be a story and everyone makes money off of it at my expense. I'm just really excited to play basketball in America and be free and all that politically correct stuff."

Drew Shiller/NBC Bay Area

Tags: Andre Iguodala, Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Misc Rumor

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Stephen Curry: Chris Paul Was A Great Mentor

May 12, 2018 10:29 AM

When Stephen Curry entered the 2009 NBA Draft, he worked out with Chris Paul who served as a mentor.

"He was a great mentor when it came to understanding how a guy on his level prepared over the summer for an NBA season," Curry said after practice Friday. "How disciplined he was, his work ethic, and I got to see that firsthand after summer league through the beginning of the season. And obviously, we got a Carolina connection."

Paul was 24 at that time and also played collegiately in North Carolina at Wake Forest.

"I just told him to be aggressive, as aggressive as possible," Paul said then, almost nine years ago. "And as you watch games, because you're not sure if you're going to start when you come in as a rookie, I told him when you watch, learn different things. The best thing you can do coming in as a rookie is to watch. Watch basketball. When your team's not playing, watch another team play, because that's how you learn."

Curry and Paul are no longer as close but a mutual respect remains.

Chris Haynes/ESPN

Tags: Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Playoffs

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RealGM Radio: David Locke

May 11, 2018 4:40 PM

Host Danny Leroux (@DannyLeroux) and David Locke of the Utah Jazz and the Locked on Podcast Network (@Lockedonsports) break down the Western Conference Finals, the Jazz season and much more.

They discuss the schemes and matchups that are key for the Rockets and Warriors plus Utah’s success, building around Donovan Mitchell and much more.

Sponsored by BetDSI, Hims (http://forhims.com/real), TrueCar and the Eyes on Sports podcast.

Subscribe to RealGM Radio on iTunes or via the RSS feed.  

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Golden State Warriors, Houston Rockets, Utah Jazz, NBA, RealGM Radio

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Mike D'Antoni Outlined Clint Capela's Rise Resulting In $80M Contract

May 1, 2018 4:00 PM

Clint Capela has emerged into one of the NBA's best big men since the arrival of Mike D'Antoni.

When D'Antoni was hired by the Rockets, he pulled Capela aside at training camp and outlined his vision for him.

"This is what you’re going to do for us,” D’Antoni told Capela. “Protect the rim, run the floor, set a pick, roll to the basket—oh, it didn’t work—go back, set another pick and do it over again. I’m going to yell at you, but if we win a championship, you’ll be the reason, and if we lose, it’s not your fault. We’ll still probably give you $80 million.”

Capela will be a restricted free agent this offseason and figures to receive a contract in excess of $80 million.

Lee Jenkins/Sports Illustrated

Tags: Clint Capela, Houston Rockets, NBA, NBA Signing Rumor, NBA Misc Rumor

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NBA Playoffs Snapshots (Apr. 18): Cavs/Pacers, Jazz/Thunder, Rockets/Wolves

Apr 19, 2018 10:44 AM

What happened in three snapshots in the NBA Playoffs on Wednesday, April 18.

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Cleveland Cavaliers, Houston Rockets, Indiana Pacers, Minnesota Timberwolves, Utah Jazz, Oklahoma City Thunder, NBA, NBA Playoffs, Infographic

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NBA Playoffs: First Round Efficiency Capsules
The ranking in the three efficiency metrics for all eight playoff matchups.

RealGM Staff Report

James Harden On OKC Trade: How Do You Give That Up?
James Harden thinks about what could have been with the Thunder on a daily basis.

Devin Gordon/GQ

Rockets To Sign Aaron Jackson For Remainder Of Season
Aaron Jackson averaged 20.6 points, 4.6 rebounds and 7.7 assists in China this season.

Shams Charania/Yahoo! Sports

Chris Paul 'Loves' Houston, Hasn't Begun Thinking About Free Agency
Chris Paul will be a free agent this offseason and has not begun to think about his impending decision.

Jonathan Feigen/Houston Chronicle

Luc Mbah A Moute Likely Out For First Round With Dislocated Right Shoulder
Luc Mbah a Moute also missed 15 games in mid-December after dislocating his right shoulder.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

LeBron James Cites Family, Winning As Two Biggest Factors In 2018 Decision
LeBron James has previously been a free agent in 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Joe Vardon/Cleveland Plain Dealer

Russell Westbrook Declines To Endorse James Harden For MVP
Russell Westbrook beat out James Harden to win MVP last season.

Tim MacMahon/ESPN

Kevin Durant: I Don't Think We Would've All Been MVPs In OKC
The Thunder will have had three future MVPs on their team that reached the 2012 Finals.

Anthony Slater/The Athletic

Warriors, Rockets Now Have Equal Odds To Win Finals
The Warriors had been overwhelming favorites for most of the season but they have had a host of injuries.

Ansar Khan/MLive

Rockets Sign Tim Quarterman To Two-Year Deal
Tim Quarterman appeared in 16 games last season with the Blazers.

Shams Charania/Yahoo! Sports

Tim Quarterman To Sign 10-Day Contract With Rockets
Tim Quarterman is averaging 8.9 points, 4.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists in 25.6 minutes per game this season in the G League,

Marc Stein/New York Times

Rockets To Release Brandan Wright, Sign Le'Bryan Nash
Brandan Wright played in just one game for the Rockets before soreness in his right knee forced the team to shut him down.

Jonathan Feigen/Houston Chronicle

RealGM Radio: Seerat Sohi On Houston, Toronto And The Playoff Picture
Host Danny Leroux and Seerat Sohi of SB Nation, The Athletic and more catch up on the Rockets, Raptors and the playoff picture.

RealGM Staff Report

Chris Paul Not Expected To Miss Time With Sore Hamstring
The Rockets are attempting to wrap up homecourt advantage throughout the playoffs.

Jonathan Feigen/Houston Chronicle

Mike D'Antoni, Joe Johnson Believe Rockets' Offense Superior To 2000s Suns
The Rockets lead the NBA in offensive efficiency in Chris Paul's first season playing with James Harden.

Marc Stein/New York Times

LeBron James Expected To Decide Between Cavs, Lakers, 76ers, Rockets
LeBron James was previously a free agent in 2010, 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Kevin O'Connor/The Ringer

Hornets To Interview Three Additional GM Candidates
Marc Eversley, Gersson Rosas and Adam Simon are candidates for the Hornets' GM job.

Adrian Wojnarowski/ESPN

Scott Brooks, Mike D'Antoni Named Coaches Of The Month
Scott Brooks led the Wizards to an 8-4 record in February, including a 6-1 mark on the road.

RealGM Staff Report

James Harden: This Is The Year, For Sure
James Harden reached The Finals in 2011 with the Thunder but he believes this Rockets team might be superior.

Jovan Buha/ESPN

Daryl Morey: Traded Picks Like Cigarettes In Prison
Daryl Morey believes draft picks are the easiest way for trades to happen since it's the most effective way of equalizing the values of players.

Kevin O'Connor/The Ringer