The current make-up of the Houston Rockets is good enough for a run to the NBA championship, according to the Daryl Morey, the team’s general manager. Featuring a core of James Harden, Dwight Howard and Ty Lawson, among others, the Rockets have their sights set on a deeper run than the 2014-2015 season when they lost in the Western Conference Finals to the eventual champions, Golden State Warriors.
Morey, who is known for tapping basketball advance analytics in all of his moves as a GM, believes this roster is packed with talent that can thrive in both the short and long term.
"If you look historically, championship teams have two or three elite-level players, and they're usually together for a bit. I expect this group to be together for a while,” Morey, who assumed the GM role in Houston in 2007, told the Houston Chronicle.
"If this year we don't make it as far as we want, which is all the way to the LOB [Larry O'Brien trophy], I would expect to bring most of this group back, because the group we assembled is good enough to win. We have to prove that on the court, but I don't think you look at it and say there are obvious things that need to be changed for us to be a championship team," Morey said.
He emphasized that the Rockets are title contenders on paper, but must execute in the upcoming season.
Aside from the three star players in Harden, Howard and Lawson, the team also features a number of veterans. Lawson was acquired in a trade with the Denver Nuggets earlier in the offseason and is pegged to be the team's starting point guard.
Returning to the line-up are forwards Trevor Ariza and Corey Brewer and point guard Patrick Beverley, who missed a large chunk of games last season, but is on his way back to full health. Others in the roster are combo guard Jason Terry, shooting guard Marcus Thornton and forward K.J. McDaniels.