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It's time we address the Rockets' million-dollar question

Is Stephen Silas a long-term option, or just keeping the seat warm? Composite image by Jack Brame.

I remember taking my kids to Astros games a couple of times when they were perennial losers. Parking was cheap. Tickets were given to us most times. Concessions weren't bad at all. When I was credentialed, media food was good and affordable as well. I remember being happy in 2012 when Bo Porter was hired as Astros manager because we share a barbershop. (Insert bald guys going to a barber jokes here.) Bo was essentially hired to bridge the gap. He went 110-190 in his two years as manager and was fired shortly before the 2014 season was over. He kept the seat warm for A.J. Hinch who was hired four weeks after Porter was fired. We all know what happened next.

Rudy Tomjanovich did both for the Rockets and won two titles, but eventually ended his tenure failing to make the playoffs in his last four seasons. Gary Kubiak helped put the Texans on the map with playoff appearances in back to back years, but was fired after a 2-11 start the following season. Bill O'Brien came in and made mediocrity acceptable...until it wasn't, then he too was also fired after a poor start to the season. So where does Stephen Silas fall on this list?

If one was to base their opinion off some of his former players, they'd say he should be here for the long term. Mavs superstar Luka Dončić is the latest and most notable former understudy of Silas that credits him with the growth in his game. Being a "player's coach" has its pros and cons. Currently, Silas is increasingly viewed as a key component as to why the Rockets are so bad and unbearable to watch.

The Rockets aren't just bad, they're a tough watch

When the team used their four first round draft picks on a group of raw 19-year-olds, one would've thought Silas would be given a couple of years to see what he could do with the new nucleus of the franchise. It's not the losing as much as it's the way the team looks doing so. If they were competitive and got out-talented most nights, fine. But this team is playing a historically awful brand of ball right now! At 1-13 now and 18-68 overall, it wouldn't surprise me if Silas was coaching his last days in Houston.

Honestly, I think they should give him time. He should have at least this season and next for he and his staff to show that the core talent has improved enough for them to keep their collective coaching gigs. If Silas is a young player whisperer, he won't have long to prove himself. If this team can't compete for more than a lottery pick by next season, meaning a bottom playoff spot, Silas and staff should be replaced. All that talk of letting him go now is premature. One of their future superstars, Jalen Green, is a rookie. The other two with star potential, Kevin Porter Jr and Christian Wood, could also be used as trade bait to put better talent around Green. Would it be great to see Silas work it out with the three of his young lions? Of course it would! Do we always get Hollywood endings in sports? Heck no! Here's to hoping this works out for the best and the fans are treated to a winner sooner rather than later.

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Following reports that Rockets PG John Wall wants to play, we lay out why Houston must carefully navigate this delicate situation between Wall, the front office, and their young core. Plus, we discuss how a possible rift between the front office and coaching staff could impact the situation.

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