The Rockets held their final practice in Austin yesterday, and for the first time all week, they let members of the media in to see the team scrimmage against each other (thank you Rockets!). This was the first real practice the media had been able to watch since training camp started.
It struck me how intense the action was. The players were going “all out” against each other to the point it’s a surprise that no one really got hurt other than Kyle Lowry and Jermaine Taylor bumping their knees into each other earlier in the week, which was minor.
Afterwards, coach Rick Adelman said he wasn’t pleased with what he saw Saturday:
I just didn’t think we came with the energy, or maybe it’s just a long week. They knew they were just going to scrimmage, but I felt we could have played much better. I don’t think we executed very well, especially our main guys. I just thought they weren’t into it. It’s been a long week, but overall, I think it has been a good week.
We don’t have alot of practices now. Like next week we’re going to have four games, so the practices we’ll have will be more breakdown, half-court things.
There are more quotes from Adelman in the video below. Look below the video for a breakdown of the highlights.
0:00 – Kevin Martin and Shane Battier draining shots one after another. I know these guys are professionals and they’re supposed to make these shots, but it’s always amazing to see them do it in person consecutively without missing.
1:16 – Yao warms up before entering the scrimmage
1:33 – Yao plays in the scrimmage. Included are some good plays where he scores. It’s great to see him running the court at full speed.
2:51 – Chuck Hayes drums on Yao’s head playfully
2:53 – More good plays involving Yao
3:25 – Chuck Hayes dunks it and makes everyone in the gym go wild
3:47 – Jared Jeffries scores on a sweet spin move in the lane
3:58 – Yao ends his scrimmage and takes off his shoes and socks, then does stretching drills with new Rockets’ physical therapist Jason Biles
4:14 – Yao does stretches with Darryl Eto, the Rockets’ Director of Strength and Conditioning
4:33 – Kevin Martin scores on a nice jumper off the glass
4:47 – Adelman is interviewed about what they will do now that the schedule changes dramatically (four games next week), the new players who have made an impact (Courtney Lee, Ish Smith, and Patrick Patterson), as well as Yao’s progress during the week in Austin
8:39 – Yao is interviewed
9:11 – Battier goes through some stretching drills on a big stretching rack