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[Milwaukee Journal Sentinel] Landry settling in with Rockets

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by jsmee2000, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. jsmee2000

    jsmee2000 Contributing Member

    Sep 21, 2003
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    Landry settling in with Rockets

    Posted: Jan. 3, 2009 6:22 p.m.

    The education of Houston Rockets forward Carl Landry is continuing in Houston, and his grades have been favorable for the most part.

    "He's doing well," said Rockets coach Rick Adelman. "He's picked up kind of where he left off last year. He just keeps getting better."

    Landry, formerly of Milwaukee Vincent High School, caught the Rockets' eye as a rookie last season, worked his way into the rotation and ended up averaging 8.1 points, 4.9 rebounds and 16.9 minutes in 42 games.

    His numbers are very similar this season. Through the first 33 games, Landry averaged 8.8 points, 5.1 rebounds and 20.7 minutes per game.

    While admitting there have been some ups and downs this season as he continues to learn the pro game, Landry is much more comfortable now than he was last season.

    "As a rookie, things were going like 100 miles per hour," he said. "It was going so fast. I needed to just slow down and at times it was hard. But this year I kind of understand the game and the game is at a normal speed for me.

    "I just have to continue to listen to the coaches and the veteran guys on this team and grow into the player I know I can be. There's some things that are still new to me, but a lot of the things I've seen already due to having a year under my belt."

    Landry has had some nice games - 20 points and nine rebounds against the Clippers, 19 and six against Washington, 15 and 10 against Indiana, and 18 and six against Golden State - but, as with most young players, he's had games where he hasn't been much of a factor.

    Landry played well against the Milwaukee Bucks last week, making 5 of 6 shots, scoring 14 points and grabbing four rebounds. He had one of the plays of the game for Houston when, early in the fourth quarter, there was a scramble for a loose ball under the Houston basket. Landry came up with the ball and threw down a dunk to give the Rockets a 10-point lead. The Bucks took a timeout and Landry went to the bench smiling from ear to ear.

    "You have good games, you have average games, and you have games where you could play a lot better," said Landry. "Not only individually, but as a team as well. You have those type of games, but we feel we have a lot of work to do to improve in many different areas for this ballclub. But as long as we continue to want to get better, we will."

    Landry is in an ideal situation for learning, as he is surrounded by veteran players and is coached by Adelman, who is in his 18th season in the league. Adelman likes the energy Landry brings and is having him post up more and expand his horizons a bit. Adelman, though, wants to see improvement from Landry on the defensive end.

    "It's just going to take time," said Adelman. "He's going to have to learn how to play people before they get the ball so he doesn't put himself in a bad position."

    One thing Adelman is doing more often is playing the 6-foot-9 Landry alongside 6-9 Luis Scola when center Yao Ming is out of the game. Adelman went that route at times against the Bucks, and Landry ended up being matched against 7-foot Bucks center Andrew Bogut.

    "They both give us such activity and it's our best offensive duo when Yao is out of the game," said Adelman.

    Last summer, Charlotte signed Landry to a three-year, $9 million offer sheet and it looked for a time as if he would relocate. But the Rockets matched the offer to retain him.

    "I love Houston and I'm very happy to be back," said Landry. "I feel like this could be a team that competes for a title this year if we continue to grow."

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