After a disappointing finish to what was a campaign with championship aspirations, the Houston Rockets head into the summer hoping to avoid retooling.
Houston has found a near-perfect blueprint for taking down the Western Conference juggernaut that is the Golden State Warriors but with some major names headed to free agency, everything can change in one summer. This is why the Rockets must tread carefully in regards to their offseason and they know this.
One of those expiring contracts belongs to All-Star point guard Chris Paul who the Rockets reportedly feel comfortable about re-signing. There was some speculation that he would want to join forces with close friend and fellow free agent LeBron James but according to USAToday’s Sam Amick, the Rockets appear content and confident that they will re-sign Paul and watch James go elsewhere:
It’s only natural to wonder if James might partner with his best friend and fellow free agent in Paul, and we’ve been wondering for six months or so if that might be the case. But while the Rockets appear resigned to the fact that James won’t be coming their way, they also remain fully confident that Paul is going nowhere.
If it’s any indication, Paul is part of the Rockets contingent expected to be on hand for the TNT awards in Los Angeles on Monday to help his co-star, James Harden, celebrate the MVP award that is widely expected to be coming his way. What’s more, Paul recently bought a new house in the Houston area. As for the prospect of James joining him, it’s looking highly unlikely.
The Rockets seem fine with bringing back Chris Paul and remaining outsiders for the LeBron James sweepstakes, though they were thought to be one of his potential destinations.
The salary cap would make such a maneuver difficult anyhow, especially considering Clint Capela is also a restricted free agent and in line for a major payday. However the Rockets manage their various decisions, one thing is certain: they will be back to give the Warriors another run for their money next season.