1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

Resetting expectations; how I'm learning to enjoy the ride and watch us grow

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by SC1211, Jan 15, 2021.

  1. SC1211

    SC1211 Contributing Member
    Supporting Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    Likes Received:
    Apologies in advance if IDIOT, but I feel like some of you may be processing the last 2 days along with me and might find it helpful.

    I've been thinking a lot about the Harden era over the last couple of days. I was a huge James Harden fan. I vigorously defended him to my fellow NBA fans from different cities at work. I appreciate his greatness and I think he put us in a great place to win every year. I truly believe we were a Chris Paul hamstring away from the title in 2018 and Harden deserves a ton of credit for that. All in all, the Rockets have an ironclad case for being the 2nd or 3rd best team in the NBA over the last decade because of his play.

    Tonight felt fun. When I think back over the last 8 years of James Harden, "fun" isn't a feeling I think of a lot. Don't get me wrong, I love watching my team win. With Harden, our expectations were sky high. Every single loss felt like a disappointment, and every single win felt like a sigh of relief. Harden's style of play never really bothered me, though he did give off the aesthetic of not caring at times (visibly exasperated at teammates, not hustling back on defense) and the offense wasn't the most enjoyable to watch.

    I said this in the game thread, but tonight's team reminded me of the last pre-Harden team in 2012. This was not a particularly talented team, but it was a team that visibly left it on all the floor every night. Between Lowry, Scola, Dragic, Courtney Lee, and a rookie Chandler Parsons among others, it was an energetic group that looked like they were giving their maximum effort every night. That team felt fun. I didn't expect them to win most nights and when they did lose, I never had the bitter taste in my mouth that it was because they weren't "feeling it" that particular night. I see shades of that team in guys like Tate, Brown, Nwaba, and PJ.

    To distill it down, like many things in life, the game of rising expectations can poison your ability to find joy in things. Being near the top can feel exhausting. In particular, it feels exhausting and disappointing when you never make it to that peak.

    Do I want the Rockets to contend again? Absolutely, it's a fan's greatest dream. But after having championship expectations for the last 6 years, I'm ready to exhale and watch some fun basketball played by guys who look like they are ready to leave it all on the floor every night, win or lose.
  2. JayGoogle

    JayGoogle Member

    Nov 3, 2007
    Likes Received:
    I feel like after so many years being a top team and 'contending' it can wear on fans especially when you come up short. It starts to become frustrating, you get blue balled over and over again and the process just becomes...frustrating.

    Nothing is better than winning a championship of course. When the Stros won a few years ago I can tell you how many times that week I watched clips and highlights and just enjoying that moment and **** MLB and its fans for tainting that championship but they'll never take away those feelings.

    So yeah, I know what you mean. Tonight was fun because even if you lose you're like "Meh, they played hard and gave it their best shot." and it's nice to not have that pressure to win every night anymore.

    Sure it's going to get tired if 5 years from now we're in the same place but for right now...it's fun. Just enjoy the games and the greater drama of the NBA is now irrelevant to us so it's easier to enjoy.

    Let Wood get his MIP, watch Tate and Brown and other guys develop.
  3. leangle25

    leangle25 Member

    Jul 8, 2012
    Likes Received:
    Kinda sad it ended but we are all in this together. Be well..... xD

    Back to the 41-41 record with the 14th Pick of the NBA draft...... the Houston Rockets select (Power Forward) hahahahahah
    xcrunner51 likes this.
  4. Derp McFlopsky

    Oct 31, 2008
    Likes Received:
  5. RocketsFido

    RocketsFido Member

    Oct 31, 2013
    Likes Received:
    I bet it's also fun for many here to root against Harden and for the Nets to fail so we can get those lotto picks.
  6. ElPigto

    ElPigto Member
    Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2006
    Likes Received:
    I've always had fun watching the Harden era. I had fun watching yesterday's game. I had fun watching Adelman Rockets, pre and post Yao. I was miserable watching JVG rockets. I had fun watching Rudy T rockets.
  7. Astrodome

    Astrodome Member

    Apr 23, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Maybe we can overcome his loss. Pass the ball, get a good shot. He was great and I defended him to everyone but maybe we were deceived by our own hype. Wall is a better than Westbrook. Oladipo/Gordon will get wide open looks. Our defense is better than last year. Maybe we can make a 2nd round run again. We need to hire a draft guru immediately.
    Rudyc281 and don grahamleone like this.
  8. bro2044

    bro2044 Member

    Aug 14, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Well said, exact same page - 100%
    Rudyc281 likes this.
  9. mac_got_this

    mac_got_this Member

    Feb 12, 2007
    Likes Received:
    I enjoyed watch harden rockets but in a different way. The offense was ugly and a double edge sword.

    I knew after last year game against Utah (Eric Gordon 50 pt game) that I was ok with starting over or ina different direction without harden(as long as it wasn’t with Russ). I was dreading that game but as watched I got a sense of enjoyment and thrill that I didn’t think was possible without harden in the floor. The defense was the biggest reason. Harden gave his all but watching him anchor the defense(even when it WS good) was jsut ugly to watch. Seeing everybody scramble tonight to play for each other on defense will always be a be solar team of basketball. Even cousins who isn’t the greatest on that department was giving effort. Harden couldn’t give high motor effort on defense for a full play. The reason we beat the spurs was because they couldn’t zero in on one player to pay attention to. Tate brown and Wood all took turns on the spurs in the last couple minutes versus the spurs where we knew the ball was going to Demar.

    the rockets played ugly offense with harden but that was ok because harden was a generational scorer. I jsut wish he was more willing to adapt and move.

    I’m pretty sure I’m not alone when I say that my favorite year of harden was the 2015 version. Mvp harden or scoring champ harden isn’t even in my top 3 versions of harden. I like versatile harden
  10. oelman44

    oelman44 Member

    Mar 24, 2012
    Likes Received:
    This is a great post, completely agree with this. I don't think I ever had more fun rooting for the Rockets than those Lowry/Dragic/K-Mart/Hayes/Scola/Battier/Brooks teams. We were an overachieving underdog, the regular season was more fun because every game was a battle to sneak into the playoffs throughout the entire year, and it was just more enjoyable to watch - any given player could go off any night. That being said, while the Harden regular seasons weren't as fun, some of those playoff series (2018 GSW in particular) were the most intense experiences I've ever had as a fan.

    I'd absolutely take that tradeoff for meaningful summer basketball, but I like this sentiment. Feels good to just be able to enjoy old-school basketball every few nights with no expectations and a hungry team, overlooked team with a chip on their shoulder.
    Sluball3 likes this.
  11. SRR21

    SRR21 Member

    Jun 29, 2012
    Likes Received:
    If this team gells and puts together a real run than we have to try to improve the roster.
    Otherwise Tank for our pick
    Trade away Tucker Gordon Mclemore cousins Oladipo
    Get young Talent or as much draft collateral as possible.
    Put together a package for a star
    Or up in coming.
    Collins ATL
    Hield Sac
    Ball nop
    Robinson mia
    Markkanen chi
  12. Rocket River

    Rocket River Member

    Oct 5, 1999
    Likes Received:
    Well. Winning was fun.
    I liked it. I liked watching the Rockets
    I hate that the national narrative and denigrating everything Rockets ....that has also penitrated the clutch fans.
    I hated how we learned to hate our own team and players because espn told us to do so
    Even though they played hard
    Were winning
    But did not play the style others played
    Then again
    I loved watching the "uglyball" of 93-94

    People here want to talk about how fun that was
    But want to be revisionist and not remember how people called it boring and ugly.
    That finals was the "worse in history"

    I no f*cking wish to get back to the pre-Harden 43-39 days. I dont give a **** how much ball movement and "beautiful basketball" it is

    Unless their is improvement
    Growth in the team is fun

    Rocket River
  13. treyk3

    treyk3 Contributing Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Now I can stop pretending that this team had a shot in hell at anything other than a second round loss!

    Now I can pretend this team has a shot in hell at a second round loss!

    hakeem94 likes this.
  14. Will

    Will Clutch Crew
    Supporting Member

    Feb 14, 1999
    Likes Received:
    Love this. I would just add: Watch every possession as its own story. Some will be bad, but many will be delightful.
    JayGoogle and burlesk like this.
  15. DaDakota

    DaDakota Contributing Member
    Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 1999
    Likes Received:
    Ding ding ding - we have a winner.

    Just enjoy the young guys growth......

  16. YaoMingsSoulja

    Oct 16, 2010
    Likes Received:
    I guess people don't have too much faith in eg, wall, oladipo, and wood. Oh well, I think they make the playoffs with ease.
  17. RocketsFido

    RocketsFido Member

    Oct 31, 2013
    Likes Received:
    This current team proved they can beat low playoff seeded teams to bad teams.

    We may not be able to topple actual title contenders but after losing Harden, this is about the best we can expect from our guys.
  18. Ziggy

    Ziggy 99ers STAND BY
    Supporting Member

    Jun 11, 1999
    Likes Received:
    20 people like this post? This team sucks. Lulz.
  19. nacho bidness

    nacho bidness Member

    Jan 13, 2017
    Likes Received:
    The last expectations thread I made the same comps to those rugged teams with no stars under adelman at the end. Yao was almost done but they were fun. The chuck wagon era etc...im expecting good entertainment value watching a middling team develop.
    burlesk likes this.
  20. Stephen_A

    Stephen_A Member

    Mar 18, 2016
    Likes Received:
    Yeah those title contending years are gone. As fans we should be excited for the next iteration of Rocket ball. The process is fun in starting over again. What the future holds no one knows but it’s exciting to see what’s next for us whether it’s getting a stud in the draft or trading for a star or signing a major player. And just watching the maturation of Wood and guys like KJ Martin. These should be exciting times.

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!

    Upgrade Now