After jumping from 18th in the NBA in points allowed per possession two years ago to seventh last year, the Rockets have crashed to 21st this year.
It’s hard to overlook the surprising retirement of assistant coach Jeff Bzdelik, the architect of Houston’s switching scheme, shortly before training camp.
But… he’s back.
Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:
What a chance for Bzdelik to bolster his reputation as a defensive mastermind. The Rockets look so lost on that end.
But he won’t have the same tools as last season. Mainly, Houston lost Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute in free agency. It’ll be a bigger challenge building a defense around Carmelo Anthony, whom Bzdelik coached with the Nuggets.
The Rockets’ 3-5 start might not have directly lured back Bzdelik, but owner Tilman Fertitta surely felt the sting of losing. Fertitta’s words to Bzdelik were influenced by Houston’s results.
I wonder whether Bzdelik parlayed that into a raise.