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Howard on Joining Rockets: I Found Joy in Playing Again

Basketball Insiders

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As he (Dwight Howard) prepares to enter his third season playing for the Rockets, Howard is very much at peace with the decision that brought him to Houston.

As the 6-foot-11 center approaches his milestone 30th birthday in December and another likely round of free agency next July, that state of mind is critical to both Howard and the organization that wants to keep him literally in the middle of a championship pursuit.

“Playing here in Houston, just finding a joy in just playing basketball again and not look at it as ‘Oh man, if I mess up, it’s going to be on TV. If I say something, it’s going to be bad.’ Just getting away from all that, just coming here, has helped me to open back up to everybody and just be who I am.”

Source: Fran Blinebury of NBA.com

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Report: Nick Nurse, Raptors Agree to Extension

Shane Rhodes

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The Toronto Raptors announced Tuesday they have signed head coach Nick Nurse to a multi-year contract extension. Per team policy, financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. This past season, Nurse guided the Raptors to a 53-19 record during the regular season (second best in the NBA) and set a franchise-record with a .736 winning percentage. Toronto also reached the Eastern Conference Semifinals for the fifth straight year.

Source: Toronto Raptors

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Sources: Rockets Interested in Tyronn Lue, Sam Cassell for Head Coach

Basketball Insiders

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Sources: There is mutual interest between the Rockets and Clippers assistant coach Sam Cassell. Cassell started his playing career with the two-time champion “Clutch City” Rockets.


With a head coaching vacancy in Houston, expect the franchise to take a strong look at Los Angeles Clippers assistant Tyronn Lue.

Source: Tim MacMahon and Chris Haynes on Twitter

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Sources: Mike D’Antoni Won’t Return to Rockets Next Season

Basketball Insiders

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Houston Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni has informed the franchise that he’s becoming a coaching free agent and won’t return to the team next season, he told ESPN on Sunday.

“It’s with tremendous sadness and gratitude that my wife Laurel and I announce that our incredible journey in Houston has ended for now and that we’ll be moving to a new chapter,” D’Antoni told ESPN in a statement.

D’Antoni, whose contract expired with the end of Houston’s season in the Western Conference semifinals on Saturday, turned down extension offers before the season.

He will be considered among a group of candidates for the Philadelphia 76ers’ coaching opening, sources told ESPN.

Source: Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

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