Rockets Have ‘Hard Feelings Right Now Everywhere’

Between contract talks with Mike D’Antoni and the possibility of a major trade, the Houston Rockets are undergoing a tumultuous offseason.

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“There’s too much damn turmoil,” a high-ranking Rockets official told ESPN’s Tim MacMahon. “There’s some hard feelings right now everywhere.”

There have also been reports of tension between James Harden and Chris Paul.

“Chris wants to coach James,” a source familiar with the stars’ dynamic said. “James looks at him like, ‘You can’t even beat your man. Just shut up and watch me.'”

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Paul pushed for more plays and sets in the Houston offense.

“It’s always a little contentious when you have two alpha dogs,” a team source told ESPN. “Ask the Golden State Warriors if they’ve ever had problems between their stars.

“There is contention there, but they know they’re tied at the hip, and they want to win. They’re smart. They won’t let it affect the team. … That is not the reason Golden State beat us.”

Paul cherishes the opportunities he gets to play without Harden on the floor and would sometimes bark at D’Antoni to keep Harden on the bench while running the second unit. Harden would lobby or demand to check back into the game.

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Harden typically tends to avoid conflict but snapped back at Paul during the Rockets’ Game 6 elimination loss.

“Chris has a personality where he just doesn’t let anything go,” a team source said. “He just keeps pestering and pestering and pestering and pestering. Sometimes James has had enough — and not just him. That’s what makes [Paul] a winner and also what keeps him from being a big-time winner. He’s got to temper that.”

Daryl Morey is more concerned with results than relationships.

“I feel like we have one of the best duos in the league,” Morey told ESPN. “They’re both first-ballot Hall of Famers. Both years, we were very close to knocking off what I consider to be the best team in the league, and we feel great about them going forward.”

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