May 26, 2016, 3:20 pm
Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Thursday that the Rockets and head coach Mike D’Antoni are closing in on a four-year deal including a team option for the fourth season. There have not been any reports on how much money is guaranteed, and there are foggy reports that this is a hire spearheaded by owner Les Alexander. That said, rumors from a few months back that Alexander would be more involved with decision-making and that GM Daryl Morey is on the ropes point more toward something else.
Namely, what A-level coach is going to Houston if they’re not sure how long the GM will be there? Also, Dwight Howard is no longer a plus player and he is also a major injury risk, as is most of the roster, so that leaves the Rockets down to one star and a shallow squad with plenty of question marks.
So again, this hiring reeks of being a bridge to whatever the future may hold for the Rockets. D’Antoni’s offensive style fits with what Morey wants to do and from D’Antoni’s perspective, every year out of the head coaching ranks was going to be another year in which he slips further down in those ranks.
Alexander will probably give them a year or two to make it work with James Harden and it’s possible this could be the beginning of a rebuild, too. If D’Antoni and Morey’s moves don’t pan out, then they start fresh building around Harden while also shopping for their next GM/coach combo.