Daryl Morey, General Manager of the Houston Rockets says that he is happy with the current roster in the team, but they will still look for improvement. The team lost Game 7 of the Conference Finals to the defending champions Golden State Warriors in their home city. The defeat was quite disappointing for the team. They had worked hard throughout the postseason and if they had just won the seventh game, they would have easily made it to the NBA finals.
Coach Mike D’Antoni said on Wednesday, “Win 70 and win the title. We could do that.” General Manager Daryl Morey said, “My job is to try and always improve. I’ll be kicking every rock, like we always do. But coach and I were talking, if we have basically this same group back, we feel very good about it as well.”
There is a lot that the team must face after this defeat. Owner of the team Tilman Fertita will have to pay a heavy luxury tax bill if they want to retain the free agents. The tax bill of the team could be as high as $25 million. If the point guard Chris Paul, one of the most important players of their team signs to a max contract and the price of restricted free agents like Clint Capela rises and Trevor Ariza also signs a deal, the team will have a lot on their plate.
When asked the Wednesday price tag, Morey mentioned, “We have an expensive team, and Tilman for sure has signed up for that.” D’Antoni also understood the tax bill waiting for the team. He asked users to “be sure to go out and eat a lot at Landry’s,” a restaurant owned by Fertita.
It will not be an exaggeration to suggest that the Rockets are obsessed with the Warriors. Their only mission through the past few seasons has been to defeat the Warriors. Morey has even said that they have developed their team with Golden State on their mind. Their Western Conference final defeat this season has put fuel to the fire. The team believes that they have enough of good people to handle pressure and win in the second crucial offseason.
Morey said, “I think given the great organization we have, and Tilman has done amazing things since he’s been here with upgrades. With our winning and the stories around the league about our locker room, our players, and our coaches, we are going to have our pick of plenty of free agents out there. Whether they are the high-end ones, or they are the Luc Mbah a Moutes or Gerald Greens from this year, that can come in and be real key competitors. We do feel we are very well-positioned to win the free-agency battle to get us over the last hump.”
The team is also expected to pursue LeBron James, who could work wonders for their lineup playing with his friend Paul. While his status is still doubtful, Houston’s own Harden has already started making goals for the next season.