The Houston Rockets are a team of North American professional basketball league NBA. The Rockets (German: "Rocket " ) was founded in San Diego in 1967; In 1971 the team to Houston, Texas was sold.
San Diego Rockets (1967-1971)
The San Diego Rockets appeared in 1967 as an expansion team in the NBA. Although San Diego is located on the west coast of the USA, the team played in the Eastern Conference. The first player to the Rockets in the NBA Draft committed, the future Hall -of- Fame coach Pat Riley was. However, their first season included the Rockets from only with 15 victories. A year later, the NBA Draft in 1968 attracted the Rockets with the first pick Elvin Hayes, the first star of the team. This led the Rockets in 1969 to their first playoff participation, but they failed at the Atlanta Hawks. When NBA Draft 1970 came with Rudy Tomjanovich an important player for the team, which was to shape the face of the franchise for decades.
Despite Hayes, Tomjanovich and point guard Calvin Murphy remained in subsequent years of sporting success. Also, the team had to contend with low attendance at home games. This prompted the then owner Robert Breitbard, the team for sale. The franchise was bought by a Texas Investment Group for 5.6 million U.S. dollars and moved to Houston in 1971. This Texas had for the first time in history, an NBA team.
First years in Houston and Moses Malone era (1971-1982)
With the relocation to Houston the era Elvin Hayes ' ended with the Rockets. Hayes, who hitherto best points scorer the Rockets, was sold in the middle of the NBA season 1971/72 in the Baltimore Bullets. With the departure of the star, the Rockets played no role in the award of the playoff places. Only in 1975 was followed by the second qualification playoff, where she lost in the second round against the Boston Celtics.
In 1976 Moses Malone are committed by the Buffalo Braves and the team qualified for the playoffs again in 1977. However, the Rockets eliminated in the second round against the Philadelphia 76ers Julius Erving to. The next few years were marked by mediocrity. 1978 has been committed with a NBA Legend Rick Barry, who had, however, already passed its zenith. After a weak 1977/78 season with only 28 wins, they escalated in the NBA season 1978/79 to 47 victories. Moses Malone won the MVP award for his achievements.
With the entrance of the Dallas Mavericks in 1980, the Houston Rockets were moved from the Eastern Conference in the Western Conference. Despite a by -growing season in which they won only 40 games, reached the Rockets in 1981, after playoff victories against the Los Angeles Lakers, San Antonio Spurs and Kansas City Kings, the first time the NBA Finals. There they were subject cited by Larry Bird Boston Celtics in six games. 1981 brought the Rockets already 36 years old Ex -Star Elvin Hayes back. Houston again qualified for the playoffs, Moses Malone won his second MVP trophy, but this time was already after the first round deadline. After leaving Malone left the Rockets in the direction of Philadelphia 76ers and the Rockets have taken the rebuilding.
Twin Towers (1983-1987)
With just 14 wins in the NBA 1982/83 season, the Rockets won the Erstwahlrecht the NBA Draft 1983. Chosen extremely talented center Ralph Sampson, who was awarded with 21 points and eleven rebounds per game for the Rookie Of The Year. The Rockets improved their balance sheet from 14 to 29 wins. In the 1984 NBA Draft, the Rockets were once again the first choice right and used it for the Nigerian center Hakeem Olajuwon. The duo Sampson and Olajuwon was, because of their size ( Sampson: 2.21 m, Olajuwon: 2.13 m ) and dominance awesome called "Twin Towers ". With the arrival Olajuwon, the Rockets once again qualify for the playoffs, but eliminated in the first round. A year later, in 1986 reached the young Rockets in the final. Once again, you had to admit defeat to the Boston Celtics Larry Bird and Kevin McHale. Boston head coach KC Jones prophesied the "Twin Towers " and the Rockets a golden era and called the duo Olajuwon and Sampson as "new monster on the block ". In the following season, Sampson was injured badly and dropped out half of the season. With Olajuwon alone, the team could not repeat last year's success and was eliminated in the playoffs in 1987 against the Seattle SuperSonics prematurely.
Rebuilding with Olajuwon (1988-1992)
Sampson was never able to fully recover from his injury and lost much of his athleticism a. His values fell by an average of 20 points and 11 rebounds per game on 15 points and nine rebounds. The leaders drew the consequences and sent Sampson during the 1987/88 NBA season to the Golden State Warriors. There, too, and at other teams could Sampson, due to chronic knee injuries, never to build on its achievements to career start and finished in 1992 at the age of 31 years his NBA career. The Rockets were since that day in front of a rebuild. Important players from the NBA Finals of 1986 left the team or ended their career. In spite of new commitments such as Kenny Smith, Otis Thorpe and Vernon Maxwell, and regularly qualifying for the playoffs, the team retired regularly in the first round. 1992 missed the Rockets to the playoffs.
Top team and NBA Championships (1993-2001)
After a mediocre start to the 1991/92 NBA season, the Rockets fired management trainer Don Cheaney, in its place took over the former Rockets player Rudy Tomjanovich as coach. In the 1992 NBA Draft, the Rockets coated with Robert Horry an important player for the future. When NBA Draft 1993, she undertook Sam Cassell and Mario Elie. In 1993, the Houston Rockets for 85 million U.S. dollars by Leslie Alexander were bought.
The NBA season 1993/94 constituted a turning point for the Rockets dar. Michael Jordan ended his career, the champion of the past three years, the Chicago Bulls, were no longer dominant without Jordan. The Houston Rockets closed the season with 58 wins and were from behind the Seattle SuperSonics second in the Western Conference. Hakeem Olajuwon was honored for his achievements with the MVP Award. In the playoffs, the Supersonics eliminated in the first round surprisingly against the Denver Nuggets from, so that the strongest opponents of the Rockets was already eliminated. After victories against the Portland Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns, and against the Utah Jazz, the Rockets met in the NBA Finals to the New York Knicks to Star center Patrick Ewing. In a close encounter over the seven games left, the Rockets prevailed as the winner and won their first NBA championship.
In the middle of the 1994/95 NBA season the Rockets forward Otis Thorpe sent to the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange came star player and Olajuwons friend Clyde Drexler to Houston. In spite of a relatively weak season in Houston had only the sixth- best record in the West, the Rockets survived the first round against the Utah Jazz. After another brief series against the Phoenix Suns and San Antonio Spurs, the Rockets once again reached the NBA Finals. There they met the young and upcoming team of the Orlando Magic. The Magic were thanks to their record this season and the young stars Shaquille O'Neal and Penny Hardaway as favorite. But the Rockets surprised the experts who won all four games and therefore their second championship in a row.
With the return of Michael Jordan ended the series championship the Rockets. The Playoffs 1996 Rockets dropped out in the second round. During the NBA season 1996/97 the Rockets threaded a Topverpflichtung and superstar Charles Barkley brought from Phoenix. In return, Robert Horry and Sam Cassell changed to Arizona. With the triumvirate Olajuwon, Drexler and Barkley, the Rockets were back as favorite for the title and closed the season with 57 victories from. In the playoffs in 1997, they reached the Western Conference Finals again, but different from the reasons given by Karl Malone and John Stockton Utah Jazz from. The following season was much worse and the Rockets qualified only as eight best team in the Western Conference for the playoffs. Again came the off against the Utah Jazz, this time in the first round. After leaving Clyde Drexler finished his NBA career.
After the lockout during the NBA season 1998 /99, the Chicago Bulls fell apart. The Houston Rockets committed, as a replacement for the retired Drexler, Scottie Pippen of the Bulls. Of the remaining 50 games, the Rockets won 31 In the playoffs, but came again the early exit against the Lakers. After the season, Pippen left the team to Portland. The 1999/00 season was the last season of the Barkley Rockets jersey. He resigned after the season. The now 37 -year-old Olajuwon played only with half of the season. The Rockets missed the playoffs for the first time. New star of the team was the rookie Steve Francis, who was on the 1999 NBA Draft by the Vancouver Grizzlies committed. Francis was honored for his performance, along with Elton Brand, with the co- rookie -of-the - Year Award.
Yao Ming era (2002-2011)
According to the 2000 /01 NBA season Olajuwon left the Houston Rockets and moved to the Toronto Raptors, where he became a year later ended his career. The Rockets built now on the young players Steve Francis and Cuttino Mobley. In the 2002 NBA Draft, the Rockets won the draft lottery and were the first team to choose. The choice fell on the 2.29 m major Chinese center Yao Ming. After a mediocre season in which the playoffs were missed, resigned head coach Tomjanovich. His body took over Jeff Van Gundy. With Francis, Mobley and Ming a new dynasty should be justified, but the Rockets qualified for playoffs again until 2004, but dropped out against the Lakers.
Steve Francis was made in the summer of 2004 with Mobley for Tracy McGrady to Orlando. McGrady, one of the best players in the league at that time, should form a new team with Ming. The team improved markedly, but failed in the first playoff round against the Dallas Mavericks. A year later, the season ended due to injury missed half the season in the disaster as Ming and McGrady. With only 34 wins the playoffs were missed. Nevertheless, the Rockets quickly recovered and qualified regularly over the next three years for the playoffs. Yao Ming became one of the best center in the NBA. After switching off in the first round 2007 Van Gundy was replaced by Rick Adelman. In the 2007 /08 NBA season the Rockets drew up a series of 22 victories. This is the third-longest winning streak ever in the history of the NBA. However, they never more than the second playoff round reached in these years.
In the pre-season to the NBA season 2009/10 Yao Ming injured so badly that he turned out for the entire season. Tracy McGrady also injured his hard and played irregularly. With the two permanent injuries, the Rockets missed the playoffs in 2010. McGrady was sent during the season to the New York Knicks, in return, the Rockets Kevin Martin received from the Sacramento Kings. Aaron Brooks won at the end of the season the NBA Most Improved Player Award.
In the NBA season 2010/11 Yao Ming returned after nearly a year's break back into the Rockets squad back. However, Ming suffered in its fifth season game a stress fracture in his left ankle. In spite of possible poor prognosis managed the Rockets Kevin Martin and Luis Scola thanks to at least finish the season on a positive note when they did not reach the playoffs. On July 20, 2011 said Yao Ming, for health reasons, his retirement from the professional basketball sport.
New start with Harden and Howard ( Since 2013)
With the resignation of Ming the wrapping of the team began. During the NBA season 2010/11 Shane Battier and Aaron Brooks were sold. In return, among other things, Hasheem Thabeet and Goran Dragic came to Houston. However, the Rockets missed the playoffs scarce. After the season, Adelman left the team and Kevin McHale was hired as the new coach. The playoffs were still missed again in the NBA season 2011/12.
In summer 2012, key players like Luis Scola, Kyle Lowry, Marcus Camby and Goran Dragic left the team. The Rockets committed Ömer Aşık and Jeremy Lin. In addition, given the Rockets with Jeremy Lamb, Royce White and Terrence Jones three Erstrundenpicks, and Donatas Motiejunas with four rookies for the new season. Shortly before the beginning of the season 2012/13 Jeremy Lamb and Kevin Martin were submitted to the Oklahoma City Thunder. In return, joined, among others, James Harden to Houston.
On February 5, 2013 featured the Rockets in the game against the Golden State Warriors with 23 successful three -point throws the previous NBA record of the Orlando Magic from the year 2009. In the play -offs, the Rockets met in the first round to the favored Oklahoma City Thunder. Against the Thunder eliminated the Rockets in six games with 2:4 victories. Harden got into Houston on the star and was selected to the All- Star. With 25.9 points per game, he was the fifth-best points scorer in the NBA.
For the 2013/14 season -Star center Dwight Howard has been committed by the Los Angeles Lakers. The 27 year old was at the Rockets a four- year contract converted 68 million euros.