Daryl Morey signs off

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Teuana Smith, Sports Reporter

Daryl Morey has officially resigned as the Houston Rockets’ general manager after a staggering 14 years. While working for the Rockets since 2007, he built quite a reputation for the team by making critical decisions to get them to the top. Yao Ming and Tracy McGrady were examples of amazing talent that the Rockets have had. In their decline, Morey made one of the biggest moves in his career by signing James Harden in October of 2012.

 

Their partnership became an essential key in how Morey made decisions about who to choose as future teammates. Harden soon gained control over who to keep and who to trade on the roster. Harden was always looking forward to the next great superstar to join the team. In 2013, Morey landed a deal with Dwight Howard to complement Harden for the upcoming season. This dynamic duo lasted until the 2015-2016 season until Howard left the Rockets. He attempted to obtain Chris Bosh from the Miami Heat in 2014 but was unsuccessful leading to the addition of Jeremy Lin and Trevor Ariza. 

 

The Houston Rockets advanced to the conference finals before signing Ty Lawson in 2015. This became a loss for Morey after Lawson’s contract was switched to non-guaranteed for a DUI arrest. Still trying to build a dream team, his efforts eventually backfired when adding Eric Gordon and Ryan Anderson who did not meet his standards. 

 

“Last year hurt us in terms of perception around the league,” Morey told ESPN at the start of the 2016-17 season. “We felt like if we didn’t have a more successful season this year, our ability to be a top destination would be hurt.”

 

Morey was running out of options for a great pick until he signed both Chris Paul and P.J. Tucker for the price of Montrezl Harrell, Patrick Beverly. This led to one of their best seasons yet (2017-2018) when the Rockets took a 3-2 lead in the conference finals and could have possibly won if not for Paul’s injury in game 5. After losing Paul, Morey and the team couldn’t quite shake back to finding that perfect match for Harden. 

 

Nonetheless, Morey has given the team the title of having the league’s longest consecutive playoff appearance streak topping off with eight years. They have a total of 77 trades. Tilman Fertitta refers to Daryl Morey as “ the best general manager in the league”. 

 

Morey now plans to spend more time with his family with his two children while they partake in their gap year from college. He wants to give himself a chance to try new things professionally. The team has promoted Rafael Stone, former VP of basketball operations to the general manager with the assistance of Eli Witus.

 

Information and quotes provided by Zach Lowe, an ESPN senior writer.