Poll: Rockets’ Next Head Coach

One of two teams that has yet to hire a new head coach, the Rockets are taking their time to finalize a decision on who will replace Mike D’Antoni. It has been over six weeks since D’Antoni and the team went their separate ways, and it has been nearly two weeks since a report suggested the Rockets had narrowed their search to three candidates.

Since Jeff Van Gundy, John Lucas, and Stephen Silas were identified as the Rockets’ presumed finalists, there have been conflicting reports on which candidate has the upper hand.

ESPN’s Brian Windhorst suggested last week during a TV appearance that Lucas had emerged as the frontrunner for the position and seemed to imply that Van Gundy was no longer a serious candidate. However, his colleague Adrian Wojnarowski said on SportsCenter later that day that Van Gundy had remained the “focus” of Houston’s search and that conversations between the two sides were continuing.

Providing an update this week on the state of the Rockets’ search, Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle (video link) said he doesn’t believe Lucas is the favorite.

“I really think at this point it’s going to be Jeff Van Gundy or Stephen Silas,” Feigen said. “John Lucas was – and is – a good candidate that they very seriously considered, and are considering, but I think it’s those two.”

Feigen explained that the Rockets’ desire to involve several different members of the organization in the decision – from the basketball operations department to team ownership to players – is one reason why the team has yet to make a hire. But with the draft just weeks away and free agency and training camps expected to follow shortly thereafter, it’s safe to assume Houston will finalize its decision pretty soon.

With that in mind, we want to know which direction you think the Rockets will go with their hire.

Will they lure Van Gundy away from the broadcast booth for another go-round in Houston? Will they stay in-house and promote Lucas, making him an NBA head coach for the first time since 2003? Will they opt for a first-time head coach with plenty of assistant experience in Silas? Or is there still time for the team to go off script and bring in someone unexpected for the job?

Vote in our poll, then head to the comment section below to share your thoughts on which candidate the Rockets will – and should – hire to replace D’Antoni.

Trade Rumors app users, click here to vote.

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29 thoughts on “Poll: Rockets’ Next Head Coach

  1. Sillivan

    Annual Coach Salary dated 10/16/2019

    Heat – 3 million
    Raptors – 3 million
    Celtics – 3 million
    Wizards – 7 million
    Pistons – 7 million

    When you paid more money to coach, they tend to underperform more?

    • JamesT

      Because Silas may be looking for an opportunity to show what he can do with only one of 30 such positions in the world. JVG and Lucas may just be looking to coach in the league again. It’s no doubt dysfunctional but last I looked people still coach for awful owners. See: any one of the many in New York, Cleveland and Phoenix.

  2. Yep it is

    Why other than $$$ would any quality coach take that job. They aren’t winning anything for years now.

  3. KnickerbockerAl

    Harden is untradeable. If they don’t move Westbrook now. It is slow death……
    Small Ball for what ?? To get rid of your coach. And the GM run away.

    • Jason Lancaster

      LOL wut??! “Harden is untradeable”?

      Seriously, did you hit your head or something?

  4. Strike Four

    Destined for irrelevancy, as if they were ever actually relevant in the first place.

    Steph is the Rockets Daddy, period. Steph has rings, the Rockets (in this era) do not.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      The Warriors already became irrelevant at the end of the 2019 playoffs.

      • Strike Four

        5 straight finals with no * – they are shooting for 6 straight next year and will probably win another. Something you will never, ever know the feeling like again.

        • wagner13

          This season does not have an asterisk. The Lakers won fair and square. Every team had a chance to win the Finals and I don’t even like LAL

        • goastros123

          Strike Four, Steph has also gotten lucky: 1. 2015 finals Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are hurt. 2. 2017 WCF Curry’s teammate Zaza executes a dirty play on Kawhi, causing Kawhi to get hurt. 3. 2018 WCF Chris Paul injures his hamstring in a game that pushes the Warriors to the brink of elimination. The Rockets are not gonna win a championship with a system built around small ball but if you wanna talk about Steph Curry and his rings, let’s not ignore how lucky he was.

      • Strike Four

        The word “daddy” doesn’t apply to cheaters.

        You are a scumbag for supporting cheaters, period.

        • goastros123

          You were so confident the A’s would do something and yet they lost to the Astros.

  5. AshamedMethGoat

    Doesn’t matter who they plug in as coach, the’ll still exit the playoffs in the second round if they keep the current roster and insist upon playing midget ball.

  6. LexLegend

    I’d go with Chris Finch. Familiar with the Rockets and similar to Nick Nurse.

  7. Jason Lancaster

    If we assume Fertita is Jimmy Dolan Jr, than he’ll make a splashy hire whom he’ll promptly undermine and ignore.

    Therefore, it will be JVG.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      Silas was the smart move here. He has been around the game for almost two decades and finally has been given an opportunity with a perennial contender that’s loaded with talent.

      • Jason Lancaster

        Silas was a good hire for sure. But if he was hired because he was the cheapest option? Good hire for the wrong reason.

  8. x%sure

    There has been some water-carrying reporting going on in this period of impatience. I haven’t kept track but Windhorst is caught here.

    Harden is taking a lot of responsibility and it may not be good for his legacy, if true.
    Possibly, Harden just wants JVG out of the picture, because JVG would likely only put up with so much of his solo attitude.

    I suspect Windhorst thinks Harden will in effect get his favorite hired, because he had the power under Morey, AND/OR…
    Windy is doing Harden a favor by spreading some responsibility for trying to bury JVG. I would guess Harden is more useful to a professional gossip.

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