May 12, 2014, 10:35 AM EDT
The season prior to hiring Dean Cooper in 2012, the Rockets finished 17th in defensive rating.
With Cooper, Houston improved to 16th and then 13th.
Apparently, that wasn’t enough for Kevin McHale (right) and/or Rockets management.
Fran Blinebury of NBA.com:
The Rockets need a coach who convinces Harden to at least try defensively. Maybe that wasn’t Cooper and will be his replacement.
But when one player ignores his responsibilities to that degree, even the best-designed defenses can break down.
That’s not to place all the blame or even of a majority of it on Harden. He gets a plurality, and let’s leave it at that.
In the Rockets’ first-round loss to the Trail Blazers, Harden actually defended with effort at times, but Portland still torched Houston. The Rockets’ problems run deeper and maybe this is a start toward fixing them, but at most, it’s only a start.
- Report: Rajon Rondo agrees to one-year, $9.5 million deal with Sacramento Kings 25
- Report: DeAndre Jordan agrees to four-year, $80 million deal to join Dallas Mavericks 44
- Report: Kings signing Marco Belinelli to three-year, $19 million contract 15
- Report: Knicks to sign Robin Lopez to four-year, $54 million contract (unless DeAndre Jordan changes his mind) 8
- PBT Extra: Free agent signings we didn’t love 6
- Report: Wes Matthews reaches agreement to join Dallas Mavericks 23
- PBT Extra: Five best free agent signings in the first days of free agency 11
- Dwyane Wade agrees to one-year, $20 million deal to stay with Heat 55