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Rockets’ Clint Capela Confident He Will Have a Big Season

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Houston Rockets big man Clint Capela is eyeing a big season in 2018-2019 and is hoping to elevate his game to the next level after signing a big contract with the Rockets this offseason, hoping for an All-Star caliber campaign.

Capela feels he was snubbed last season.

“It sucked,” Capela said, according to Kelly Iko of The Athletic. “I definitely think I should have been [this year], but I didn’t complain about it. It’s all about the consistency. By just doing the work that I do, for sure I’ll be an All-Star next year.”

Capela hopes to be the best center in the NBA.

“Of course,” said Capela. “As a basketball player, I like to do it. Makes me feel good. So yeah, why not? You never say never. You like to expand your game, and I like to expand my game.”

Capela has been working hard this offseason, as he aims to get in the same shape as former teammate Dwight Howard.

“I’ve been working on that [strength] so it helps,” Capela said. “Of course, getting stronger, more minutes, playing with the same guys helps. I’m just trying to stay engaged. I start off solely to stabilize and utilize to know what I’m doing before every game, what makes me and my body feel good. All of that helps me grow this year.”

“He was dominating,” Capela said of Howard. “He was always taking care of his body. Did his work, and went out there and just dominated. He was huge!”

Houston Rockets

Suns Land Ryan Anderson, De’Anthony Melton in trade with Rockets

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The Phoenix Suns have acquired forward Ryan Anderson and guard De’Anthony Melton from the Houston Rockets in exchange for forward Marquese Chriss and point guard Brandon Knight, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Anderson agreed to reduce the guarantee on his $21 million salary in 2019-20 to $15.6 million to help facilitate a move out of Houston, who had been attempting to trade Anderson for two years due to his lofty salary.

Phoenix will have until July 10, 2019 to decide on guaranteeing the full amount for the final season of Anderson’s contract, and if they choose not to they can waive him and pay him his $15.6 million.

Chriss is the main piece heading to Houston. The Suns selected him with the 8th overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft but Chriss has been a bust during his Suns tenure, often times looking out of place on the court and succumbing to a number of mental errors.

Chriss’ attitude has also become an issue and he had had trouble staying in shape, which motivated the Suns to move on from him despite trading for him on draft night.

Knight is expected to play backup to Rockets’ starting point guard Chris Paul.

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Rockets Sign Bruno Caboclo

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The Houston Rockets have officially signed free agent forward Bruno Caboclo, according to ESPN’s Chris Haynes.

Caboclo became an unrestricted free agent when the Sacramento Kings, who acquired the 22-year old 6’9 forward via a trade with the Toronto Rapors, declined to extend him a qualifying offer in late June.

Caboclo is a former first round pick, as the Raptors selected him with the 20th overall pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

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Rockets’ Mike D’Antoni Believes Carmelo Anthony ‘better fit’ with Rockets than Knicks

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The Houston Rockets finally signed forward Carmelo Anthony, after a lengthy process that involved a trade, a buyout, tons of speculation, and some financial maneuvering, inking the veteran to a deal on Monday.

Many may recall that Anthony played for Rockets’ head coach Mike D’Antonio before, when the two were in New York with the Knicks, and that didn’t end well, with D’Antoni exiting amid rumors of a rift with Anthony.

D’Antoni is once again at the helm, but this time, he believes that things will be better because he thinks Anthony is a “better fit” for the Rockets than he was with the Knicks, and he doesn’t forsee any issues in coaching the All-Star.

“In New York, when [the Knicks] gave away half the team [to the Nuggets in the 2011 trade for Anthony] and everybody expected us to win a championship, it really wasn’t realistic,” D’Antoni said, according to USA Today Sports. “It put a lot of pressure on everybody, and it kind of burst the pipes.

“I think this is totally different. We’ve got a team that is a whole bunch of veterans that really, we’ve got one thing in mind, and that’s to win a championship, and we have the possibility.”

Despite the rumors of a rift, D’Antoni admitted that  Anthony “never had a blow-up” in New York while also referencing coaching Anthony with USA Basketball.

“We never had a blow-up before, so it’s not he wanted to play a certain way and I kind of wanted to coach another way,” D’Antoni said. “Back then [in New York], there wasn’t even analytics. I was going by my gut, and he was going by [his] gut, and it’s just, you know — styles clash.

“And I think now, things have changed and everybody is playing the same way. I think it’s a lot better fit and I think we have a really good chance to be really good.”

Years later, a now 34-year olf Anthony will have a different role than he did, back then, with the Knicks when he had much more pressure, many more expectations, and a lot more pressure.

“The more talent you can have, the better the guys are, the better the team is going to be,” D’Antoni said. “Look at Golden State, how they had all those guys and you fit in [Kevin] Durant. I mean if you are committed to a certain style, and everybody is committed to the team, it works itself out.”

D’Antoni was mum on if Anthony would be a starter or come off the bench in Houston.

“I don’t know, and that’s something that we’ll have to work out,” he said. “All I know is that we’ll try different combos — preseason, early season, and the good thing is that with analytics and with gut feelings and coaches and players, we’ll figure out what is the best way to play.

“And again, if everybody is on board, then it’ll be, ‘Hey, this is where we’re the best. This is how we can win the championship.’ I don’t know yet, but we’ll make sure we get it right as good as we can.”

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