HOUSTON (CBS HOUSTON): The Houston Rockets were trying to hit a home run this off-season by signing Chris Bosh and bringing back Chandler Parsons to make a team that Rockets GM Daryl Morey thought would be the best in the NBA. It didn’t work out that way. Bosh went back to the Miami Heat for $118 million and the Rockets decided not to match restricted free agent Parsons’ offer sheet from the Dallas Mavericks.
Morey joined In The Loop with Nick & Lopez on Monday to discuss everything that happened with the Rockets this weekend.
Morey loves Chandler as a player and believes he is a really good player, but without Chris Bosh to join this team the Rockets decided Parsons wasn’t going to make them a championship team.
“It takes three, at least, three elite players with very little exception, throughout history, it takes three elite players and a good set of players that fit around them,” Morey said on the roster make up of a championship team. “Once Bosh said ‘no’ it put us into another very difficult decision of, is matching Chandler Parsons, do we have a better chance of winning a title by matching it or not matching it. That comes down to a very simple question, is Harden, Howard, Parsons a three that can be a championship three? I actually think it can be. I think Chandler is a great player, getting better. Really really good player, no doubt. But the question is actually: is Harden Howard Parson, is that three a better championship odds than Harden, Howard and the team we can put together with a guaranteed lottery pick trade exceptions mid-level young team improving and continuing to be flexible? That was the very tough decision before us. But I can tell you this, in our opinion it was not close.”
“We are in a better [place] to win a championship by not matching it, once Bosh goes away than by not matching it.”
The Rockets weren’t planning on not having Parsons in the 2014-2015 season.
“We were quite confident [Parsons] would be back,” Morey told Nick Wright & John Lopez.
Part of bringing Parsons back was to pair him with three players that would make him better. Chris Bosh was supposed to be that third player for the Rockets, but he changed his mind at the last second, heading back to Miami. Despite the potential Morey saw with a Rockets team enhanced by Bosh he is still optimistic for the team he has now.
“We felt like we were on the, right there, on having potentially having the best team in the NBA if we got Bosh and matched Parsons,” Morey said. “We feel great about where we’re at, as well. With the youngest playoff team last year and a team that is continuing to improve with Patrick Beverley and a young core behind it and a lot of ways to continue to improve this season.”
“We feel good about going forward, but we were, it is tough. We were right at the precipice of, what I would argue maybe is the best team in the NBA.”
Morey believes the current team is so good, they will be better in the playoffs this year, than they were last year.
“Just start that we are going to be better in general,” Morey said about the team’s growth into a better playoff team for 2015 than 2014. “Second, to the fact that we have a full mid-level (player exemption), we’ve got a trade exception, we’ve got a draft pick structured like the one that netted us James Harden a couple years ago, two years ago now. We have big time ability to improve the team this year, while things are going on.”
The Bosh deal was the catalyst to what Morey thought was the decision on Chandler Parsons. Morey told Nick & Lopez that the value of a player is pretty straight forward.
“When you have your core that you feel like can be the championship core you can really almost pay anything to anyone,” Morey said. “You’re just putting the final frosting on the championship cake.”
“Until that point you will hurt your odds of winning the championship if you make moves that eliminate your chance to continue to improve. That’s sort of the issue with those mid-tier type contracts. They are great if they’re sort of the final piece. That’s why once you have Bosh and you have Chandler, paying Chandler anything is fine once you have Bosh. You can pay him a hundred million, it’d be fine. Now you have a team with that set of guys plus a young core around them and good role players. Now you’ve got a team that is going to go out there and maybe be the favorite or the top three to go win a championship. If you lock all that in prior to having your set that you feel like has great odds to winning the championship you literally are eliminating your odds of winning a championship. That is sort of what we felt like we were facing…We felt like matching [Parsons] would drop our championship odds in a big way because it would eliminate our ability to keep improving.”
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