Kevin Mchale

Rockets to wear armband, have moment of silence to honor Sasha McHale


The entire NBA nation feels for Kevin McHale right now, who lost his daughter to her battle with Lupus over the weekend.

The Houston Rockets – the team McHale coaches but is on a leave of absence from — has come up with ways to honor McHale and his late daughter, Sasha, reports the Houston Chronicle.

The Rockets made plans to wear a green band on the shoulder of their uniforms to memorialize Sasha McHale, the daughter of Rockets coach Kevin McHale who passed on Saturday. Green was Sasha McHale’s favorite color. There will be a moment of silence before the team is introduced before Tuesday’s game against Toronto at Toyota Center.

There is no timetable for McHale’s return to the Rockets. Nor should there be. The man is making funeral arrangements for his daughter and as a father I have no idea how you bounce back from that.

The gesture from the Rockets is a nice one.

As we have said before, our thoughts are with the McHale family.

James Harden: “I am the best player in the league. I believe that.”

James Harden, Stephen Curry
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James Harden was the MVP last season — if you ask his fellow NBA players.

The traditional award (based on a media vote) went to Stephen Curry (in the closest vote in four years), and that was the right call (in my mind). But from the time it happened Harden did not buy it. And he still doesn’t buy it. In the least — and he’s using that as fuel for this season. That’s what he told Fran Blinebury over at

“I am the best player in the league. I believe that,” he said. “I thought I was last year, too.”

Well, it’s a more realistic claim than Paul George’s.

“But that award means most valuable to your team. We finished second in the West, which nobody thought we were going to do at the beginning of the year even when everybody was healthy. We were near the top in having the most injuries. We won our division in a division where every single team made the playoffs.

“There’s so many factors. I led the league in total points scored, minutes played. Like I said, I’m not taking anything away from Steph, but I felt I deserved the Most Valuable Player. That stays with me.”

That’s very Kobe Bryant of you to turn that into fuel. Defining the MVP Award is an annual discussion that nobody agrees on.

I could get into how Harden was the old-school, traditional stats MVP, how that ignores how Steve Kerr used Curry, and how that opened up the Warriors’ offense to championship levels. Curry put up numbers, but he was also the distraction, the bright star that Kerr used to open up looks for Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and others. Curry’s strength was not just what he did with the ball in his hands, but his gravity to draw defenders even when he didn’t. Did the Warriors stay healthier than the Rockets? No doubt. Should Curry be penalized for that?

It’s simple for Harden — if he can put up those numbers again, if he can be the fulcrum of a top offense, he will be in the discussion for MVP again. And, if he can lead the Rockets beyond the conference finals, nobody will talk about that MVP snub anyway.