With the addition of Luis Scola, I was so excited about the upcoming season for the Rockets. But today the Rockets sign Steve Francis to a 2 year contract, I just don't have any words to describe how disappointed I am right now. Now I must not cheer for the Rockets until Francis leave the team.
Off Season Hopes
2 months ago, I hope the Rockets will get an active power forward, one that can get offensive rebound and finish around the basket, because of all the attention that Yao and T-Mac get. Marcus Camby would be awesome and he is available for trade due to Nuggets high payroll from the addition of AI and big contract of Nene and K-Mart made these two un-tradable. Instead the Rockets gave up nothing to get Lusis Scola in return, a talented Argentine power forward, which the Spurs just don't have enough cap space to sign, after drafted him 3 years ago with a second round pick.
Then they need to add another player that could drive to the basket and finish to lighten T-Mac's load. Ideally, this would be a good point guard, but that is hard to come by and Juwan Howard for Mike James isn't so bad. At least James could play some solid "D" with his size as a point guard. Also Aaron Brooks was drafted, developing a young point guard, that would work too.
Subtraction by Addition
The Rockets sign Steve Francis, who was recently traded by the Knicks to the Trail-Blazers and the T-Blazers bought out his contract to clear cap space afterward. The Rockets don't need Francis, he might came at a bargain price but the Rockets don't need him. The Rockets is now loaded with too many point guards - Rafer Alston, Mike James, Steve Francis, John Lucas III and rookie Aaron Brooks is now destined for the NBDL. Look for the Rockets to swing another deal to trade away Rafer Alston and/or John Lucas to get more depth on the two forward position (possibly the center position instead, but big man is tough to come by). The Rockets would probably play some small ball when Yao goes to the bench with Francis at shooting guard and Battier plays power forward at times, but that would also mean Francis already not a particular good defensive player to play as an under size defender on the other end. This is something that Francis is used to but that doesn't mean that it is a good thing.
With the addition of Scola already, the Rockets need other players (role players) to play solid "D" to be able to complete with the likes of the Spurs and the upcoming Jazz. With Francis, the Rockets might get caught up to try to outscore the other teams, they will get by the first round and maybe the second but will end up like the Mavs and Suns, a great season record but can't win the championship. With Yao and T-Mac, Francis would only be the third option at best and need to give Scola some touches, but the Rockets don't have a good distributing point guard, there just might not be enough shots to share.
Bottom line, the Rockets don't need Francis and now I can't cheer for Rockets anymore, even Yao Ming, my current favourite NBA player, is on the team, because of the signing of the Vancouver Grizzlies destroyer, my all time most hated NBA player.