One team to watch for with Lebron is Houston. They will try to get in the mix. Not sure if Lebron wants to play in Houston. - Adrian Wojnarowski
For so many years, us Houston Rockets fans argued about players like Kevin Martin, Luther Head and Chase Budinger. Some really thought these were key pieces in helping to form an eventual contender in Houston. But assets is all they ended up being, as some of us Moneyball types easily predicted. Yet, just a year after Dwight Howard did what no other star player has ever done and left the storied Los Angeles Lakers to take less money with the Rockets, the locals still seem to believe that Houston just isn’t enticing to NBA superstars.
I’ve written previously about how we have went from arguing over bit players to now thinking we are too good for legit superstars like Carmelo Anthony and just how ridiculous I think that is. But is it just a pessimistic fan base in Houston that can’t realistically look at their roster and believe an established star player wouldn’t see that as a great opportunity?
I’m not going to sit here and tell you why I think LeBron James has eyes for Houston, but the fact that lead NBA guy Adrian Wojnarowski is even mentioning the league’s best player in the same sentence with Houston on the Dan Patrick show should be an eye opener. (Video below) This isn’t the Rockets team that had Kyle Lowry and Kevin Martin as their star players anymore. Regardless of the heat that James Harden has taken locally after his dismal playoff performance, he’s still the best young two guard in the league. Players with his ability, at his position, at such a young age is rare. Dwight Howard is still the best center in the game. Do you really believe a star player looking to leave his old team wouldn’t be intrigued by that?
Houston suffers from a very strong case of always fearing the worst. All last summer, any talk of adding Dwight Howard was immediately met with “dude, he’s not coming here.” Why not? They never had a real answer for you besides that he wasn’t going to leave his old team. But that isn’t the discussion here.
What is it about this Houston Rockets franchise, as constructed, that you think would chase a potential star player off? It’s a thriving city that a lot of NBA players make their offseason home, they have terrific ownership, a shrewd general manager that’s always going to try and make his team better and two star players that have barely scratched the surface of what their peak could be. What’s left? Kevin McHale? A coach that players have said to absolutely love playing for? Try again.
The answer is nothing. There is nothing about Houston that is undesirable for a star player. Other than waking up 50 feet from the clear waters of South Beach, there is little else to compete with Houston right now, and I’m not even bringing up the tax perks of being employed in Texas.
In the end, I’m not stumping for or against a new big three being born in Houston this summer. I’m simply stating that Houston is just as attractive to NBA players as New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. The national media might not see that, but a competent NBA star surely does. So when free agency open in two weeks time, think back to last summer and remember that things are different now. What seemed inconceivable just a year ago can be viewed as almost probable this year. Stars want to play with other stars and Houston has a pair of them.
(Photo Credit to Dtexanz for the Carmelo Phototshop above. Give him a follow.)
Video from Dan Patrick’s show. His questiom about LeBron starts at around the 2:00 minute mark, and Woj talks a little about Houston at 4:05.
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