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Bucks blowout bumbling Rockets; change is surely on the way

February 10th, 2009
by John

The game against the Bucks in Milwaukee was such a joke, I won’t even bother getting into many details other than to say the Rockets were outplayed again by a sub-.500 team, and played no defense as the Bucks racked up the most number of points against the Rockets this season. And they did it without their leading scorer (Michael Redd), rebounder (Andrew Bogut), and assist man (Luke Ridnour).

My oh my. How far we’ve come since last year’s 22-game winning streak. ABSOLUTELY PATHETIC.

It’s weird how all the players know they are sucking right now, but no one is doing anything about it.


Yao Ming’s psyche hurt more than his temporary arm pain
in an embarrassing 124-112 loss to Milwaukee Wednesday night.
Yao only scored 7 points on 2-of-8 shooting. Click here for
more photos.

After the game, Yao said, “Now is not early in the season. It’s not 20 games into the season. Now it’s 50 games into the season. We’re still stuck in here and talk about we still have time to fix it, from first game of the season and 10 games in the season and 50 games into the season. We still talk about we need to fix it.” Click here for Raymond’s full translation of the interview.

Luis Scola
said of the Bucks, “They played with more energy, they ran faster, they played harder. I don’t know why it’s happening. I wish it doesn’t happen anymore. It’s really embarrassing.”

Rafer Alston summed up their matador defense after he himself played horrific D against Ramon Sessions: “We don’t try to play ‘D’. That’s just the bottom line. It’s coming to the point we’re not even trying. Then we have the audacity on offense to race the ball up the court. The mind-boggling thing is how do you race around on offense and walk around on defense. To me, that’s not even trying. It’s embarrassing.”

McGrady: “We can sit here and pretty much talk about what we talked about a couple days ago after the game — defense. We don’t know how to play. We don’t execute defensively. We’re just right now a team that doesn’t know how to play defense. The first quarter, second quarter, third quarter — they got whatever they wanted. You’re not going to win that way.

“The offense is not fluid. There’s too much one-on-one, no ball movement. We’re just a team that doesn’t have an identity. We don’t know who we are. We’ve been talking about this for so long.”

Ironic that he would say there is no ball movement.

To me, the players shoulder a big responsibility, but the coach must receive a big part of the blame, too.


I am sick and tired of seeing the Rockets get burned on defense, and the coaching staff just sits there stoic with no emotion. Dikembe Mutombo shows more intensity on the bench after the Rockets blow a defensive assignment for a bucket than the coaching staff does! How about we make Dikembe a player-coach for the rest of the season, kind of like Celtic great Dave Cowens once was! I’ll try anything at this point.

Congratulations, Adelman. In just 2 seasons you have managed to decimate the Rockets’ top-flight defense into rubble. Not that I would want JVG back as coach, but I’ll admit I even miss his ability to inspire a defense.

I am almost hoping that the Rockets play one more stinker of a game Wednesday night against Sacramento so no one will get delusional headed into the All-Star break that the Rockets are finally turning the corner on this season. That’s fool’s gold. Let’s put this team out of its misery with one more loss, then put ourselves out of our misery by finally pulling the trigger on some trades or a big coaching change.

With all their inconsistency this season, it’s not a matter of “if” a trade or big move will happen, it’s a matter of “when” and “who.”

We know it won’t be Yao. He’s to blame to some degree for this let-down. He hasn’t seized the leadership role this team has needed. But everyone knows his work ethic is unquestionable, that these losses are eating him up more than anyone, and how he can really dominate if his teammates get him the damn ball.

I trust that Daryl Morey, Sam Hinkie, and the rest of the front office are pouring over all the data they collect on every player in the league, and will try to make a move for a replacement for McGrady (1-for-9 for 3 points), Shane Battier (0-for-3 for 3 points, and whose defense is now overrated IMHO), and maybe Ron Artest (6-of-11 for 20) or Alston (2-for-8 for 9 points).

We know the head case we have in McGrady, as well as the hot dog who went up for an unnecessary reverse jam in the first quarter, only to get blocked by the rim. That one play typified McGrady’s season so well. The crowd laughed. His teammates laughed. In frustration, McGrady lost his head and fouled the rebounder in retaliation, again thinking about himself — not about what that foul did for the team.

During a timeout soon thereafter, even McGrady smiled over at the bench, who was still messing with him about his botched dunk.

The player(s) the Rockets get in return in a trade won’t be superstars. They will probably be solid, emerging players who have a bright future, as they should. I just don’t see them bringing in some aging superstar, unless the contract expires at the end of this season to free up some cap room for next season.

It’s not like the Rockets have to “blow up” this team and start over. I think they can continue building around Yao and keep their nucleus of young stars like Scola, Landry, Brooks, and Wafer, and maybe even keep Artest around. To trade Artest would be giving up on the Rockets’ playoff chances this season.

I’m an optimist and still think they can make a run in this year’s playoffs. After all, they were playing so well without McGrady just a few weeks ago before he returned from his mid-season rehab. I don’t think they’re that far off from getting their intensity level and ball movement back. They just have to get rid of some dead weight.

I’m torn about keeping Artest when his trade value is still extremely high. He could fetch some nice talent in return. Although he may have off-nights offensively, he’s more intense on defense, can hit the three (4-of-5 Monday night) and brings some heart to this team, which is in short supply.

As far as their next game Wednesday night is concerned, I wish Adelman would grow a pair, make a statement, and finally bench McGrady, Battier, Alston, and start Yao, Wafer, Scola, Landry, and Brooks. I don’t care if they lose — SOMETHING HAS TO CHANGE.

Then they can head into the All-Star break where it’s usually quiet on the trade front, and after Sunday’s game shake things up on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday with a big trade (or trades) before the Thursday deadline.

32 Responses to “Bucks blowout bumbling Rockets; change is surely on the way”

  1. pryuen Says:

    Got penetrated and played minimal contact and defense, and let Keith Bogans scored 13 points and Charlie Bell scored 21 points over him………..and yet he still said something shiiiiiiiiiit like

    McGrady: “We can sit here and pretty much talk about what we talked about a couple days ago after the game — defense. We don’t know how to play. We don’t execute defensively. We’re just right now a team that doesn’t know how to play defense. The first quarter, second quarter, third quarter — they got whatever they wanted. You’re not going to win that way.

    Man, when is enough is enough for this guy who just talked and not walked the talk???

  2. pryuen Says:

    Got penetrated and played minimal contact and defense, and let Keith Bogans scored 13 points and Charlie Bell scored 21 points over him………..and yet he still said something shiiiiiiiiiit like

    McGrady: “We can sit here and pretty much talk about what we talked about a couple days ago after the game — defense. We don’t know how to play. We don’t execute defensively. We’re just right now a team that doesn’t know how to play defense. The first quarter, second quarter, third quarter — they got whatever they wanted. You’re not going to win that way.

    Man, when is enough is enough for this guy who just talked and not walked the talk???

  3. Vince Says:

    Tracy McGrady will not be traded, do you guys not remember T-Mac's performance in the playoffs? You've definitely changed John, you use to support the Rockets through the thick and thin even when Yao went out last season, now your posts are just like every other fake Rockets fan who talks more shit than a sewer plant.

  4. Vince Says:

    Tracy McGrady will not be traded, do you guys not remember T-Mac's performance in the playoffs? You've definitely changed John, you use to support the Rockets through the thick and thin even when Yao went out last season, now your posts are just like every other fake Rockets fan who talks more shit than a sewer plant.

  5. YaoMingMania Says:

    It's time for realism. McGrady doesn't have it any more, either mentally or physically. And he's not the only one they need to consider trading. Anyone who doesn't see this after losing to so many bad teams has their head in the sand or is blind. It's time for change, baby.

  6. YaoMingMania Says:

    It's time for realism. McGrady doesn't have it any more, either mentally or physically. And he's not the only one they need to consider trading. Anyone who doesn't see this after losing to so many bad teams has their head in the sand or is blind. It's time for change, baby.

  7. airchina23 Says:

    I only had a chance to catch the 1st half of this game. I was disappointed at Yao's limited play because of foul trouble. I thought Yao should have been more aggressive even when the double team comes. In the first half, there was several time Yao was posting up and as soon as he got the ball, the defense collapsed. He passed the ball out every time, and I think he only got one assist out of those plays. I really think several times he could have taken one power dribble and force the ball in amidst the double and draws a foul.

    While I don't think that was how the Rockets lost the game, it might have made a difference if Yao had drawn some fouls and got himself going from the foul line.

  8. YaoMingMania Says:

    Oh, I forgot to mention that by suggesting they make trades, that IS supporting them through thick and thin. The worst thing that someone can do is not care, to the point they stop watching, which is what people will do if they keep this same roster in tact.

  9. YaoMingMania Says:

    Oh, I forgot to mention that by suggesting they make trades, that IS supporting them through thick and thin. The worst thing that someone can do is not care, to the point they stop watching, which is what people will do if they keep this same roster in tact.

  10. YaoMingMania Says:

    I think Yao is frustrated that he's not getting the ball enough, as seen in
    Raymond's translation in the forum of his interview after the game. Because
    Yao is turnover-prone, I actually would rather have him pass out of a
    double-team, but the Rockets have to get him the ball when he's moving
    toward the basket where it's much more difficult to double-team him.

  11. YaoMingMania Says:

    I think Yao is frustrated that he's not getting the ball enough, as seen in Raymond's translation in the forum of his interview after the game. Because Yao is turnover-prone when he's double-teamed, I actually would rather have him pass out of a double-team, but the Rockets should still get him the ball when he's moving toward the basket where it's much more difficult to double-team him.

  12. NYCBOBBY Says:

    I try not to disrespect no playa in the league so here goes my attempt to blow off some steam about the team. It is unfair to blame everything on TMAC. Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality. I youtubed some TMAC vids from his Magic days. and what did I see? TMAC jacking it up from the outside and occassional drives. But the diffrence back then was he was more definitive on what he wanted to do. He did it so crisply and confidently. TMAC of today, maybe because of his phsyical decline, STILL jacks it up, but more hesistant and slow on his moves. THAT is the TMAC difference! But anyways what ever it is, TMAC just aint TMAC anymore for whatever reason. We'll just go with uncited health reasons. knee etc…Yao on the other hand, even though he does not take fully advantage of his height, still gets the job done (BARELY). But the thing between these supposed two all stars is that they are not leaders. Forget lead by example. Name me a team that has won with lead by example leaders. In New York, the yankees won with the likes of Paul O'Neil, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez. Warriors and vocal leaders. After they have left, the lead by example Jeter have done nada zippo ziltch! Jeter is so image concious, they'll probably never win another championship until they get someone in here to really lead. We are hearing it from the likes of Skip to my Lou. But it's not going to work when your supposed All Stars are not even legit Stars! I am tired of covering up for them. When TMAC was TMAC, yes he is a legit 85% Star. When Yao is at his best, Yao is a legit 75-80% Star. Kobe and Lebron and KG are 100% Stars! They not only lead by example they also lead the lockerroom. If there is any time to do it, now is the best time for Yao to take over this team NOW! John you are right. We need to be real about this team. Let's face it, TMAC won't be TMAC no more and he has never been a leader. Yao has reached his max potential and that is only enough to be a 75% All Star with many deficiencies (rebounding, defense, boxing out, real post ups). I don't think this pairing will work. Sorry I still need more writing as I feel a need to let it out. The only way I feel this will work out for this season since Yao and TMAC won't lead and I have already established the fact that leading by example won't take you to championship level is for Ron Artest and Skip to my Lou to put that New York attitude ALA Mario Elie onto the team. Forget that Yao and TMAC are the All Stars and just tell everybody, “Ok since nobody wants this, this is how its going to work from here on out!” Put some attitude into these two fragile weak hearted All Stars. No more sweet, poetic post games quotes from Yao. It makes me absolutely sick! This team is going no where like that. As far as trades, I just feel so bad that there are no good trade pieces except for Ron Artest and maybe our better role players. Ehhh, I give up. End of post here. I let my frustrations be known.

  13. NYCBOBBY Says:

    I try not to disrespect no playa in the league so here goes my attempt to blow off some steam about the team. It is unfair to blame everything on TMAC. Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality. I youtubed some TMAC vids from his Magic days. and what did I see? TMAC jacking it up from the outside and occassional drives. But the diffrence back then was he was more definitive on what he wanted to do. He did it so crisply and confidently. TMAC of today, maybe because of his phsyical decline, STILL jacks it up, but more hesistant and slow on his moves. THAT is the TMAC difference! But anyways what ever it is, TMAC just aint TMAC anymore for whatever reason. We'll just go with uncited health reasons. knee etc…Yao on the other hand, even though he does not take fully advantage of his height, still gets the job done (BARELY). But the thing between these supposed two all stars is that they are not leaders. Forget lead by example. Name me a team that has won with lead by example leaders. In New York, the yankees won with the likes of Paul O'Neil, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez. Warriors and vocal leaders. After they have left, the lead by example Jeter have done nada zippo ziltch! Jeter is so image concious, they'll probably never win another championship until they get someone in here to really lead. We are hearing it from the likes of Skip to my Lou. But it's not going to work when your supposed All Stars are not even legit Stars! I am tired of covering up for them. When TMAC was TMAC, yes he is a legit 85% Star. When Yao is at his best, Yao is a legit 75-80% Star. Kobe and Lebron and KG are 100% Stars! They not only lead by example they also lead the lockerroom. If there is any time to do it, now is the best time for Yao to take over this team NOW! John you are right. We need to be real about this team. Let's face it, TMAC won't be TMAC no more and he has never been a leader. Yao has reached his max potential and that is only enough to be a 75% All Star with many deficiencies (rebounding, defense, boxing out, real post ups). I don't think this pairing will work. Sorry I still need more writing as I feel a need to let it out. The only way I feel this will work out for this season since Yao and TMAC won't lead and I have already established the fact that leading by example won't take you to championship level is for Ron Artest and Skip to my Lou to put that New York attitude ALA Mario Elie onto the team. Forget that Yao and TMAC are the All Stars and just tell everybody, “Ok since nobody wants this, this is how its going to work from here on out!” Put some attitude into these two fragile weak hearted All Stars. No more sweet, poetic post games quotes from Yao. It makes me absolutely sick! This team is going no where like that. As far as trades, I just feel so bad that there are no good trade pieces except for Ron Artest and maybe our better role players. Ehhh, I give up. End of post here. I let my frustrations be known.

  14. Luckyme Says:

    I have just been back from oversea and I am frustrated as hell to see the roller-coaster continues the way it is. Changes should come and should be soon. Trade either T-mac or Yao because the duo is not working.

  15. Luckyme Says:

    I have just been back from oversea and I am frustrated as hell to see the roller-coaster continues the way it is. Changes should come and should be soon. Trade either T-mac or Yao because the duo is not working.

  16. pryuen Says:

    Big Yao was in foul troubles for what??? 3 out of the 4 fouls were due to poor exterior/perimeter defense that he was time and time again exposed to the penetrating guards/forwards down in the low post as the last frontier of defense. And the other one was a BS call when he was fighting for position with a Buck player in offense.

    This team now sux with all its players in mind guessing each other; they played uncohesively, without chemistry, without intensity and urgency, and without trust of each other.

    It is time for a change.

  17. pryuen Says:

    Big Yao was in foul troubles for what??? 3 out of the 4 fouls were due to poor exterior/perimeter defense that he was time and time again exposed to the penetrating guards/forwards down in the low post as the last frontier of defense. And the other one was a BS call when he was fighting for position with a Buck player in offense.

    This team now sux with all its players in mind guessing each other; they played uncohesively, without chemistry, without intensity and urgency, and without trust of each other.

    It is time for a change.

  18. pryuen Says:

    Yeah Tracy McGrady will not be traded, cos no other NBA team will want him.

    His performance in the playoffs??? So what?? It was in the past, and he never managed to take his team past the first round.

    Unlike Yao, the guy is such egocentric, always put himself above everyone and the team…..always wants personal glory more than anything. I could not stop laughing just like every of the Rockets when he screwed that reverse dunk last night. Not sure why he had to do that kind of stuff……just to show off his skills???

  19. pryuen Says:

    Yeah Tracy McGrady will not be traded, cos no other NBA team will want him.

    His performance in the playoffs??? So what?? It was in the past, and he never managed to take his team past the first round.

    Unlike Yao, the guy is such egocentric, always put himself above everyone and the team…..always wants personal glory more than anything. I could not stop laughing just like every of the Rockets when he screwed that reverse dunk last night. Not sure why he had to do that kind of stuff……just to show off his skills???

  20. pryuen Says:

    Sorry……….I stopped reading your post when you said: Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality.

    Yeah he still is his own self: egocentric, put himself above everyone and the team, put personal glory/stats above all, wants to be under the limelight all the time…….

    The guy is weird. Reported today on the Chinese website, after returning to Houston after the ugly and pathetic thrashing in Milwaukee, during the team practice, while every other Rockets were wearing their normal Rockets training jerseys/shorts, the guy wore an Orlando Magics player short.

    Maybe he is still thinking he was still that everything-is-on-me McGrady of Orlando Magics days.

  21. pryuen Says:

    Sorry……….I stopped reading your post when you said: Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality.

    Yeah he still is his own self: egocentric, put himself above everyone and the team, put personal glory/stats above all, wants to be under the limelight all the time…….

    The guy is weird. Reported today on the Chinese website, after returning to Houston after the ugly and pathetic thrashing in Milwaukee, during the team practice, while every other Rockets were wearing their normal Rockets training jerseys/shorts, the guy wore an Orlando Magics player short.

    Maybe he is still thinking he was still that everything-is-on-me McGrady of Orlando Magics days.

  22. YaoMingMania Says:

    That is weird for McGrady to wear his Orlando shorts; he always has been
    about himself, though, which is another reason to get rid of him. — John

  23. YaoMingMania Says:

    That is weird for McGrady to wear his Orlando shorts; he always has been about himself, though, which is another reason to get rid of him. — John

  24. chocolate Says:

    I think Yao could do better in current situation, as a team leader. I am not blaming his playing attitude. What I am concerned is he keeps expressing how he is lost and confused after losing games.

    It is natural everybody in the team is lost. But as a team leader, he is supposed to give his teammates confidence, especially in such a difficult situation. He should keep encouraging his team and try all means to get through it. This is the time a team leader shows his toughness.

    In my point of view, expressing how he is lost is not of any help, but telling others the team is hopeless. He could choose being silent, or even blaming certain people (of course carefully). Those kinds of comment will at least tell others they can get through it.

  25. chocolate Says:

    I think Yao could do better in current situation, as a team leader. I am not blaming his playing attitude. What I am concerned is he keeps expressing how he is lost and confused after losing games.

    It is natural everybody in the team is lost. But as a team leader, he is supposed to give his teammates confidence, especially in such a difficult situation. He should keep encouraging his team and try all means to get through it. This is the time a team leader shows his toughness.

    In my point of view, expressing how he is lost is not of any help, but telling others the team is hopeless. He could choose being silent, or even blaming certain people (of course carefully). Those kinds of comment will at least tell others they can get through it.

  26. NYCBOBBY Says:

    I try not to disrespect no playa in the league so here goes my attempt to blow off some steam about the team. It is unfair to blame everything on TMAC. Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality. I youtubed some TMAC vids from his Magic days. and what did I see? TMAC jacking it up from the outside and occassional drives. But the diffrence back then was he was more definitive on what he wanted to do. He did it so crisply and confidently. TMAC of today, maybe because of his phsyical decline, STILL jacks it up, but more hesistant and slow on his moves. THAT is the TMAC difference! But anyways what ever it is, TMAC just aint TMAC anymore for whatever reason. We'll just go with uncited health reasons. knee etc…Yao on the other hand, even though he does not take fully advantage of his height, still gets the job done (BARELY). But the thing between these supposed two all stars is that they are not leaders. Forget lead by example. Name me a team that has won with lead by example leaders. In New York, the yankees won with the likes of Paul O'Neil, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez. Warriors and vocal leaders. After they have left, the lead by example Jeter have done nada zippo ziltch! Jeter is so image concious, they'll probably never win another championship until they get someone in here to really lead. We are hearing it from the likes of Skip to my Lou. But it's not going to work when your supposed All Stars are not even legit Stars! I am tired of covering up for them. When TMAC was TMAC, yes he is a legit 85% Star. When Yao is at his best, Yao is a legit 75-80% Star. Kobe and Lebron and KG are 100% Stars! They not only lead by example they also lead the lockerroom. If there is any time to do it, now is the best time for Yao to take over this team NOW! John you are right. We need to be real about this team. Let's face it, TMAC won't be TMAC no more and he has never been a leader. Yao has reached his max potential and that is only enough to be a 75% All Star with many deficiencies (rebounding, defense, boxing out, real post ups). I don't think this pairing will work. Sorry I still need more writing as I feel a need to let it out. The only way I feel this will work out for this season since Yao and TMAC won't lead and I have already established the fact that leading by example won't take you to championship level is for Ron Artest and Skip to my Lou to put that New York attitude ALA Mario Elie onto the team. Forget that Yao and TMAC are the All Stars and just tell everybody, “Ok since nobody wants this, this is how its going to work from here on out!” Put some attitude into these two fragile weak hearted All Stars. No more sweet, poetic post games quotes from Yao. It makes me absolutely sick! This team is going no where like that. As far as trades, I just feel so bad that there are no good trade pieces except for Ron Artest and maybe our better role players. Ehhh, I give up. End of post here. I let my frustrations be known.

  27. Luckyme Says:

    I have just been back from oversea and I am frustrated as hell to see the roller-coaster continues the way it is. Changes should come and should be soon. Trade either T-mac or Yao because the duo is not working.

  28. pryuen Says:

    Big Yao was in foul troubles for what??? 3 out of the 4 fouls were due to poor exterior/perimeter defense that he was time and time again exposed to the penetrating guards/forwards down in the low post as the last frontier of defense. And the other one was a BS call when he was fighting for position with a Buck player in offense.

    This team now sux with all its players in mind guessing each other; they played uncohesively, without chemistry, without intensity and urgency, and without trust of each other.

    It is time for a change.

  29. pryuen Says:

    Yeah Tracy McGrady will not be traded, cos no other NBA team will want him.

    His performance in the playoffs??? So what?? It was in the past, and he never managed to take his team past the first round.

    Unlike Yao, the guy is such egocentric, always put himself above everyone and the team…..always wants personal glory more than anything. I could not stop laughing just like every of the Rockets when he screwed that reverse dunk last night. Not sure why he had to do that kind of stuff……just to show off his skills???

  30. pryuen Says:

    Sorry……….I stopped reading your post when you said: Now although TMAC is not the TMAC of old physically, TMAC still has TMAC's mentality.

    Yeah he still is his own self: egocentric, put himself above everyone and the team, put personal glory/stats above all, wants to be under the limelight all the time…….

    The guy is weird. Reported today on the Chinese website, after returning to Houston after the ugly and pathetic thrashing in Milwaukee, during the team practice, while every other Rockets were wearing their normal Rockets training jerseys/shorts, the guy wore an Orlando Magics player short.

    Maybe he is still thinking he was still that everything-is-on-me McGrady of Orlando Magics days.

  31. YaoMingMania Says:

    That is weird for McGrady to wear his Orlando shorts; he always has been about himself, though, which is another reason to get rid of him. — John

  32. chocolate Says:

    I think Yao could do better in current situation, as a team leader. I am not blaming his playing attitude. What I am concerned is he keeps expressing how he is lost and confused after losing games.

    It is natural everybody in the team is lost. But as a team leader, he is supposed to give his teammates confidence, especially in such a difficult situation. He should keep encouraging his team and try all means to get through it. This is the time a team leader shows his toughness.

    In my point of view, expressing how he is lost is not of any help, but telling others the team is hopeless. He could choose being silent, or even blaming certain people (of course carefully). Those kinds of comment will at least tell others they can get through it.

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