Rockets GM Daryl Morey is accepting blame for the team’s disappointing season, according to Calvin Watkins of ESPN.com. After advancing to the Western Conference finals last year, Houston is 37-38 and locked in a three-way tie for seventh place. “It has been a very tough year in terms of a lot of the things we were hoping [to] take us to the next level, didn’t and we also took a step back on top of that, so far,” Morey said. “The season is not over but to this point we underperformed from what we did from last season.” The most glaring move that didn’t work out was an offseason deal that brought point guard Ty Lawson from Denver. Lawson proved to be a bad fit alongside James Harden and signed with the Pacers after agreeing to a buyout in Houston.
There’s more NBA news from the Lone Star State:
- K.J. McDaniels‘ improvement on defense has given him more playing time, Watkins tweets. Interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff likes the versatility of McDaniels, who can match up with point guards if necessary. McDaniels is getting significant minutes for the first time since Houston acquired him via trade from Philadelphia in February 2015. The Rockets re-signed him to a three-year, $10MM deal during the offseason.
- Chandler Parsons, who appears poised to opt out of his current contract, isn’t guaranteeing a return to the Mavericks, as he said during the television broadcast of Wednesday’s Mavs game, according to The Dallas Morning News. “We’ll see what happens this summer with the option and whatnot, but right now we’re just focused on the team and anything I can do to help them,” he said. “We’ll worry about free agency when we get there.” Parsons is likely out for the season after undergoing knee surgery, but a report this morning suggested he may be available if Dallas reaches the second round of the playoffs.
- Spurs rookie Jonathon Simmons overcame tremendous odds to earn a spot on an NBA roster, writes Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA.com. Simmons was close to giving up when he attended a D-League tryout in Austin in 2013. He impressed the Toros and spent two seasons there before getting his chance this year in San Antonio. Simmons has become a regular part of the Spurs’ rotation, averaging 14.3 minutes through 52 appearances.