The Houston Rockets have had a tumultuous offseason. The team reportedly had to deal with trade requests from not one, but two superstars. Now, the Rockets are down to one superstar. Russell Westbrook is out of town, now a member of the Washington Wizards. John Wall is the new PG for Houston, reportedly a preferred option of former MVP James Harden.
New Rockets coach Stephen Silas told reporters late Thursday that he’s confident Harden will report to training camp when practices begin on Sunday, Marc Stein of the New York Times reported. Houston is reportedly ready to move forward with the core of Harden, Wall and former All-Star DeMarcus Cousins, who signed a one-year deal coming off a major Achilles injury. The same story goes for Wall.
Those aren’t the only three guys for the Rockets heading into the season. Harden still has P.J. Tucker, still has Eric Gordon, and has a young budding forward in Christian Wood. So Houston will enter this season how the team enters every season — in search of a championship. Will that happen? In my professional opinion, an emphatic NO. But the Rockets should remain competitive so long as they have Harden on the roster.
That’s the $1 million — actually $40 million question, though. Will Harden be on the roster? Most likely yes, at least to start the season. He may not last long in Houston this season if the team struggles. It’s clear the Rockets are heading more towards a rebuild than contending. It’s just very difficult to strike a deal for a player like Harden. Wall and Westbrook was kind of the Perfect Storm of trades. It’s ugly, but you work through it no matter how nasty things get. The thing with Harden is you can’t put a price tag on him.