The summer of being unnecessarily dramatic remains in full force for the Rockets, but it looks like there may be a happy ending to this tale in particular.
After what seemed to be a tumultuous disagreement between head coach Mike D’Antoni and Houston Rockets management over a possible contract extension, both sides are reportedly close to closing in on a deal.
According to ESPN’s Tim MacMahon, both sides have decided to begin negotiations anew after the Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta removed the buyout clause that began the rift in the first place. D’Antoni’s manager, Warren LeGarie, confirmed with ESPN that Fertitta and Rockets GM Daryl Morey went down to MDA’s house in West Virginia to work things out.
“Did Mike speak to those guys down there? Yes, he did,” LeGarie said. “As always, they asked Mike what he thought, and Mike said, ‘Sounds great, but talk to Warren.’ Mike’s job is coaching, and he leaves the negotiating to me.”
The previous contract extension offered to D’Antoni was an additional one year, putting him at head coach for the Rockets through the 2020-2021 season, and contained a base salary of $5 million and an additional $1 million for each round the Rockets won in the playoffs. That may be the continued expectation Rockets fan, and possibly management, have still for this new negotiation, but the LaGarie insists that D’Antoni deserves a multiyear along with a higher base salary.
While there have been public comments made from both sides over the disputes, none have come from MDA himself, and his manager maintains that the coach wanted no part in the raucous,” LeGarie said.
It’s not a done deal yet, and it definitely hasn’t gone as expected, but it says a lot about the respect and the relationship both sides have to be able to recover and possibly find the desired outcome they had initially sought. Hopefully they can end negotiations soon and come up with something that benefits both sides, especially if it means wins.