West Notes: Rockets, Pelicans, Zion Williamson, Timberwolves


It’s been a rough go of things for the Rockets this season, as they continue to develop younger players such as guards Jalen Green and Kevin Porter Jr., forward Jabari Smith, center Alperen Sengun, and the rest. 

But GM Rafael Stone seems to believe brighter days are ahead, as he shared with Kelly Iko of The Athletic.

“I think generally we feel good about our talent level. The guys who are playing a lot for us are all very young, as you noted earlier. But they’ve all flashed real signs of talent,’ Stone said, via Iko. “We’re excited about where we think they’re going to be next year. And so for the guys who are playing a lot — the NBA has no sure things and there’s no guarantees that anything will happen — we’d be very comfortable with all of them playing a lot next year with some key additions to really help solidify things.”

Stone added that the Rockets will be “super aggressive” in trying to add to their talent pool over the offseason.

“It doesn’t mean that we will be successful. And what we won’t do is chase things that we don’t think are long-term in our best interests,” he said, via Iko. “But we’re going to be super aggressive trying to be as good as we can next year, with an eye towards being even better in the future. We’re trying to build a championship team.

“And we’re going to be very aggressive along that front. What that does not mean is doing what we consider to be dumb things that prioritize next year over the year after, for example. We are trying to keep in mind the firm goal of building a championship team.”


  • Forward Brandon Ingram will have to continue to deliver if the Pelicans are to make something of the season, wrote Christian Clark of NOLA.com. For the second year in a row, they exit the All-Star break with star power forward Zion Williamson on the injured list.
  • New Orleans is just 7-16 since Williamson went down with a hamstring injury, Clark noted.
  • As for a return, Pelicans executive VP of basketball operations David Griffin said Williamson will still need time. “I think we’re looking at multiple weeks past the All-Star break that he’ll be back,” Griffin said, via Andrew Lopez of ESPN.


  • The Timberwolves have managed to stay afloat minus injured forward/center Karl-Anthony Towns with some strong defense, wrote Keith Smith of SB Nation.
  • Reports suggest Minnesota is hoping to have Town back for the final 10-15 games of the regular season, per Smith. Towns and All-Star guard Anthony Edwards should give the Wolves some hope in the postseason.

Looking for the latest NBA Insider News & Rumors?

Be sure to follow Hoops Wire on TWITTER and FACEBOOK for breaking NBA News and Rumors for all 30 teams!

Leave a Reply