Rockets head coach Mike D'Antonio won the 2017 Coach of the Year Award.
This was D'Antonio's second time winning the award, as he won it back in 2004 when he led the Suns to a franchise-high tying 62 wins. He was considered the heavy favorite for the award after leading the Rockets to a 55-27 record and a third place finish in the West. The Rockets set the All-Time record for most 3-pointers made in a season and D'Antoni is partly responsible for James Harden's best season of his career.
Daryl Morey has reportedly signed a four-year extension with the Rockets.
Morey had one year left on his contract, so now he's on the books for another five seasons. He's one of the better GMs in the league and has spearheaded the analytics movement in Houston, so this was a fairly easy decision for the Rockets to make.
Mike D'Antoni, Erik Spoelstra and Gregg Popovich are the finalists for Coach of the Year.
D'Antoni's system and James Harden busting out led to the Rockets rising to No. 3 in the Western Conference from not making the playoffs last year. Coach Spo continues to turn trash to treasure with a litany of players turning their careers around as his Heat team just missed the playoffs. Of course, Pop is arguably the best coach of all time.
Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni said that he will likely stick with the same starters and rotation for Game 6 vs. the Spurs on Thursday.
This means the Rockets will start Patrick Beverley, James Harden, Eric Gordon, Trevor Ariza and Clint Capela with Lou Williams and Ryan Anderson playing heavy minutes off the bench. The Rockets paid the price for only using seven players in Game 5 because fatigue was an issue, so it still wouldn't be a total surprise if D'Antoni gives Sam Dekker or Montrezl Harrell a handful of minutes -- D'Antoni said he will "think about it."
The NBA fined Rockets owner Leslie Alexander $100,000 for confronting a referee during Game 5.
With less than a minute in the first quarter, Alexander walked up to a ref during the game to complain about a call. This type of fine is nothing unusual and Mavs owner Mark Cuban knows that more than anyone. The Rockets will have a few more days off before they face the winner of the Spurs-Grizzlies series.
Mike D'Antoni said the main reason he's in the discussion for coach of the year honors is because he has "a really good team."
"Usually for the Coach of the Year the team has been underestimated, and that's how you get it," said D'Antoni. "Otherwise, Golden State and what they're doing, or what San Antonio's doing, but as people said, we're not going to make the playoffs, or barely make it, and then we have 55 wins. So, that's how you win Coach of the Year, and that's why most Coach of the Years get fired the next year. You overperform, then you come back to normal and they fire you." He's right.
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