Daryl Morey wanted to say goodbye to the fans and players in Houston, so the guy on the avant-garde of basketball analytics went decidedly old-school:
He took out a full-page ad in the Houston Chronicle.
In that ad, Morey thanks a lot of people, but he saves his highest praise for The Beard: “James Harden changed my life.”
“An entire page could be dedicated just to James. He not only transformed my life but also revolutionized the game of basketball — and continues to do so — like almost no one has before. The game is played differently because of James, and on every playground in the world, the next generation of talent is studying and imitating his game…
“I can’t believe I won’t be able to have another strategy session with James,” Morey wrote. “I loved working together on how to get his incredible Hall of Fame teammates Dwight Howard, Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook to the Rockets. I will be rooting for James to win a championship in Houston. It’s how this story should end.”
Morey also praised and thanked the Houston fans, saying he was “honored to have been a part of your story.”
What’s next for Morey is unclear, he may or may not be back in the NBA soon. He had just signed a five-year extension with the Rockets one year ago, the buyout from that will keep him comfortable for a long time. Morey can pick his spots.
The Rockets continue their search for a head coach, which is reportedly now a three-man race: Jeff Van Gundy, Stephen Silas, and John Lucas. Whoever they choose, don’t expect the Rockets to blow it all up this offseason. They are going to try to win with Harden and Westbrook.