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<  Yao on the court, and his most recent game  ~  Season Preview of the Houston Rockets

PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 9:27 pm
User avatarPosts: 59329Location: Hong Kong/ChinaJoined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 5:13 am

Found this season preview of the Houston Rockets.

What do you guys think? Good analysis ?? Right on the Spot ??

How many wins will we be managed to get ??

Can we break that jinx/curse for being shut down in the 1st hurdle of the playoff??


30 Teams in 30 Days: Rockets

[size=109]Tim Chisholm

9/18/2007 11:16:14 PM

Season Previews
Houston Rockets

Boston may be interesting to watch this year. So might New York. But the real rejuvenation project to keep an eye on is right here with the Rockets. To have two such dominant offensive players like Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming coached by such an offensive Neanderthal as Jeff Van Gundy was criminal. That situation has been rectified immensely with the addition of Rick Adelman as head coach.

Last summer Adelman was relieved of his duties in Sacramento for highly dubious PR reasons, yet it has worked out better for him anyway since he now inherits a team custom made, it would seem, to suit his style. Adelman runs a variation of the Princeton offense that preaches movement and passing over one-on-one isolation play. This system will make tremendous use of not only the exceptional passing of Yao in the low post, but of newcomer Luis Scola at the high post. With the two of them feeding cutters like McGrady and Shane Battier, this team is about to get a whole lot better very, very fast.

Consider this: The Rockets won 52 games last year despite Yao missing 34 outings and with McGrady fighting off his persistent back issues. Toss in the fact that Bonzi Wells provided a constant source of distraction (and rare source of production) and it's amazing this team managed the fifth best record in the NBA.

Now, imagine what they will be capable of with a properly tailored offense to compliment their fairly potent roster.

Okay, so there are still a lot of questions surrounding this team before the season kicks off. First of all is the log-jam at point guard. This team brought back Mike James about a month before bringing back Steve Francis. Both expect significant minutes at the point guard spot, as does last year's starter Rafer Alson. Now there is a chance that Alston is moved before the season stars (there is no shortage of teams that can use a starting point guard) but if he doesn't that is three very large egos trying to share one position on the basketball court.

Another issue surrounds the always-unanswerable question of Wells. While he and Adelman clearly meshed in their one year together in Sacramento, there is no guarantee what kind of commitment Wells is likely to bring to the table this year. The argument has been made that it being a contract year Wells will be back to his old, Sacramento self. But he had an option to opt-out after last season, making that a contract year as well. He can be a devastating addition to any roster in both good ways and bad depending on which side of his personality he opts to let loose. Last year he was the petulant, overweight and unproductive version of himself. The Rockets are hoping that this season sees effective sixth-man candidate they thought they nabbed a year ago.

The most pressing issue surrounding this team, as it is every year, is the health of the two stars. Yao has missed a combined 59 games the last two seasons and he simply looks unable to string together a full NBA campaign. McGrady, on the other hand, tends to either be in and out of the lineup or playing in pain when he forces it. Neither one is really to blame here, sometimes the body just betrays a player no matter how hard they work to prevent it (Bill Walton, anyone), but that doesn't help ease the nerves of the Rockets brass. As much of a concern as the injuries may be, all this team can do is cross its fingers that this year will be a relatively healthy one as they try and contend for a title.

That's the other sticking point for this team. Because of their depth and marquee talent, this team is always going to be considered a dark horse for the Championship, despite never leaving the first round in Yao's tenure with the team. While the addition of Adelman should surely rectify the latter issue, the former is just as big a r

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:12 pm
User avatarPosts: 59329Location: Hong Kong/ChinaJoined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 5:13 am
For the Chinese fans, the only problem they have could be Steve Francis should start instead of Mike James....



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2007 11:59 pm
User avatarPosts: 7735Joined: Fri May 18, 2007 10:06 pm
The rockets should win 60+ games this year if they are heathly. Their playing roster is good enough to get them to the top of WCF.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 2:04 am
Posts: 635Joined: Thu Jul 19, 2007 2:35 pm
Erm, Yao's "fragile" body? Since when did a couple of freak injuries make someone fragile? Yao is physically one of the strongest, toughest players in the league. Even Shaq was willing to admit as much, and he doesn't hand out compliments very often.

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2007 4:04 am
Posts: 1565Location: San Diego & HangzhouJoined: Thu Jul 15, 2004 12:15 am
For the Chinese fans, the only problem they have could be Steve Francis should start instead of Mike James....

why are you acting like all the chinese fans are welcoming francis back with open arms? many people haven't forgotten his ball hogging days.......

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