Rockets general manager Daryl Morey has been regarded as one of the most innovative and prominent GMs in the league since taking over the position in 2007. Morey has been a relentless worker over the past three years trying to take the Rockets from playoff contender to championship contender.
Despite all of the success he has had during his tenure, Morey is still a very humble and down to earth person that wants to know what the average fan is thinking about the team. Morey was generous enough to lend some of his time to Clutchfans this weekend and answer some of the questions posted here by our very own members. I just want to thank Daryl again for giving the Clutchfans community this very unique opportunity. I do not know of any other GM that would be willing to do this for their fan base.
Question from durvasa
Morey says the Rockets would like to add a "rim-protecting big" if possible
For the first time in a long time, the Rockets were not a good defensive team last year. With Yao's minutes being limited, and the minutes/roles of Battier and Hayes seemingly diminishing, what do the Rockets need to do to reclaim their defensive identity?
Morey: We're going to get there by hook or by crook. Obviously having Yao Ming back will be a big help. I think having the guys that we have on the team gel together from the start of the year will be a big positive. And we'd like to potentially add a big if we can get it done. A rim-protecting one would be preferred. We're definitely going to get back there. You can't be a championship team without a top ten defense so it's either going to happen with the guys on the team or there will be a trade or some other change that gets it done.
Question from anchel
Where do you think Jordan Hill has more potential -- at the power forward spot or as a center?
Morey: I think he has potential at both spots. I think he's one of those guys that can be effective at either spot. I probably see him over his career having more minutes at the four.
Question from HayesFan
The Rockets just drafted Pat Patterson so a lot of the issues now are with the new rookie. What specific characteristics does the team find most significant when they're assessing a draft pick?
Morey: That's a hard one to answer. Obviously you're always looking at their production against the risk, basically, over usually their first four years at least, and then potentially their career. Those are probably the main variables, and then 'need' does factor in. I think need factors in mostly because, regardless of how good a pick is, they do have to get on the floor at some point. It's definitely the third biggest criterion. Production, and then the variance around that production, are the biggest things we focus on.
Question by BimaThug
How much will the desire for salary cap flexibility for this February and next summer affect the team's willingness to spend its MLE this summer? Is the team willing to spend the MLE on a quality role player at the expense of its ability to make a more significant move when it may have cap room next summer?
Morey: I think it's always a balance. You're always balancing. Coach has to worry about winning each night. I've got to worry about a 3 to 5 year time horizon trying to win titles and that. And the owner, he's got the longest time horizon. So with each move, if there's enough upside of getting a guy in Year 1, then you're OK with closing off a little future. If there's not as much upside, then you're probably going to want to preserve flexibility, so there's no easy answer to that.
Kyle Lowry earlier [Saturday] tweeted, "id rather be in a place where im wanted". How soon are you guys working on getting Kyle and Luis Scola re-signed?
Morey: It's just an ongoing thing. They'll be back. It always takes time.
Question by Htown11
With Yao Ming back, how do you think he and Kevin Martin will mesh next year?
Morey: Very, very well. That was a big part of the trade. We think Yao works very well with guys who get us in the bonus and guys who can play off him. Kevin's ability to shoot from distance, get the team in the bonus and then be an elite, sort of late-clock offensive option I think will be very positive for the team.
What are your thoughts on Patrick Patterson? Friday he had a really good debut. What do you think his chances are of becoming an immediate impact player off the bench for the Rockets?
Patrick Patterson looked strong in his debut, but Morey feels the chances are "pretty low" he will be an immediate impact rotation guy
Morey: Pretty low. We're a very deep team. It's putting too much on Patrick to think he'll break into a deep rotation with Scola, Chuck Hayes, David Andersen, Yao Ming. It's just a pretty deep set of guys on the roster. We may play small too with some of our threes sliding over to the four. I think there's an opportunity to do that because Coach Adelman will just play who helps us win, but I do think that will be very difficult for him to get minutes early.
Daryl, I don't know if you read ClutchFans -- I'm not going to ask you if you do -- but this is a picture that is posted often of you on there. I just want to know what you think of this one.
Morey: (laughs) I appreciate people care about the Rockets. We're hoping to bring a title. I think ClutchFans is great. I'm very impressed. I think it's the best sports fan community of any team that I've ever seen and others have told me the same. I'm very appreciative of all the fans there. I think they do an unbelievable job following the team and I hope to live up to bringing a title to Houston.
Full Audio of Interview
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