Q: Daryl, how does Omer feel now about sharing the center position with Dwight? What sorts of conversations have McHale and you had in regards to potential concerns from both Omer and Dwight?
A: Omer would prefer to be a starter and is certainly a starter+ quality player. That said, he is a winner first & likes being on a winning team.
Q: With David Stern retiring in 2014, how is Adam Silver different in his approach to the job?
A: Probably best answered by Adam Silver but I believe he will make an amazing commissioner. He is very forward thinking and has great ideas for how to improve the league that he has shared with me and at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference . It will be very tough for him to fill Commissioner Stern's shoes as he will likely go down as the best commissioner ever but I believe Adam is the right person for the league going forward.
Q: Have you done a lot of work regarding advanced stats and how they work with your current roster? Do you think there are enough possessions for Harden, Dwight, JLin and trying to keep Parsons happy too?
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Houston?
A: Vic & Anthony's
Q: Thanks for this AMA and making the Rockets contenders again, everyone in H-Town appreciates it. Can you comment on the rumor, popularized by Bill Simmons, that CP3 had threatened to bail on the Clippers and head to Houston had they not acquired Rivers as their new HC? Any truth to the story, or just more white noise?
A: As Chris Paul is the best PG in the NBA of course we had interest. Was flattering to hear that he may have had interest in us but we were always on the periphery of where he might choose to go was my understanding. That said, Bill often has more information than I do.
Q: Also, what are the chances we see Asik getting minutes as a power forward?
A: Coach McHale plans to experiment with Dwight at PF and Omer as C in training camp. If it works and helps us win, obviously we would look at using it.
Q: Is there a certain element of randomness when it comes to building a team that can't be accounted for by analytics? Teams like the 2008 era Celtics, big 3 Heat, and Pau-Kobe-Bynum-Odom Lakers all worked tremendously, but other combinations fall flat when a team may appear to be dominant.
3-4 years seems like an eternity in NBA terms, with the Lakers shifting from back to back champions to a state of flux, and the Rockets gaining huge new pieces.
A: Tons of randomness. I love the NBA as a sport because it is one that cannot be quantified as directly as say, baseball but still has enough data&information to challenge assumptions and draw useful conclusions.
Think about one jump shot made -- was it because he is a good shooter? Bad individual defense? Bad team defense? A good pick? Because it was not off the dribble? etc... I think the most basic components of the game having multiple significant factors and randomness is illustrative to how complex the game is overall.
Q: If you had to be the genital manager for another team in the league, which would it be?
A: Really reddit? This question is at the top?
Hi Daryl! Thanks for doing an AMA again.
I noticed that Jeremy's efficiency and general performance last year seemed to slope with (or, at the very least, have a correlation to) the days of rest (B2B, 1, 2, 3 days rest). I thought it might have to do with the fact that Jeremy was still recovering from a knee surgery in the previous offseason, but I noticed the same trend with Chandler. Have you noticed this and what are your thoughts?
What do you think is causing this? Is this a phenomenon due to youth? Did Jeremy and Chandler stay up too late partying? In comparison, this isn't a league-wide trend because if you do a similar view of more veteran players using days-of-rest splits, it barely creates a noticeable effect on performance.
I posted this topic on Clutchfans earlier last season if you're having deja-vu.
A: Almost all players do better with more rest, as do teams. Where this is not true, it is likely random and not statistically significant. Really hard to find patterns here. That said, Jeremy for sure was still recovering from a significant injury at the start of last year and I believe it contributed to his slow start. By mid-year he was playing at a very high level.
Q: Have you ever laughed in another GM's face (or on the phone) over a proposed trade? Ever gotten laughed at?
A: Of course, I have never done that. I take all trade offers respectfully. In the reverse, I would prefer teams send all offers our way -- whether reasonable or ridiculous, as trades generally start from the germ of a concept and grow from there.
Q: In addition to being a ball dominant guard, Lin fell a bit off the map late into the season and in the playoffs. Do you think it would be better for the team to relegate him to to a bench role with Omir Asik? If not, what can he do to adjust to playing with Harden?
Best of luck to the Rockets this year! Hope they can at least make a deep playoff run.
A: It is amazing to me that all the time I encounter people feeling negative about Jeremy's season with us. I have chalked this up to:
-- he started off slow, mostly do to getting 100% back from injury
-- very high, unrealistic expectations after his time in New York
-- had a rough ending in the playoffs, again due to injury
-- people generally remember starts & ends more than anything else
-- people generally compare things to their expectations when forming opinions versus look at the big picture
Last year was Jeremy's 1st full year in the league. Essentially his rookie year. If last season would have been his rookie year and he never would have played in New York, right now people would be appropriately talking about him incessantly as one of the top young rookie stars in the league. He was the starting point guard on a playoff team in West at age 24!!! Don't get me started on this. Too late...
Q: What are your thoughts on Mark Cuban's video pitch to Dwight Howard? Would you ever consider doing something like this? I heard Rockets did something similar, but in 3D. Howard loves 3d videos!!
A: Our video was in 4D Smell-O-Vision
Q: Would you eat the moon if it were made of ribs?
A: Is it a McRib? Then yes
Q: Mr. Morey, I'm really, really good at this basketball GM game (play.basketball-gm.com). 48 championships in 70 years. I will work for a bag of doritos. Let me know.
On a serious note, Terrence Jones was a major contributor on the Kentucky NCAA championship team. Do you expect him to play a larger role in the future as you guys move forward with a championship roster?
A: play.basketball-gm.com Scola used to play this game on our team plane! Scola will make a great (whatever he chooses) someday.
I think Terrence Jones is going to have a big year. Our PF spot is wide open right now and either he or Donatas have the talent to help us and a big opportunity.
Some recent research from Muthu Alagappan presented the finding that there are more than just five positions in the NBA. Are you familiar with this research? If so, what are your thoughts?
For more background:
Instead of basketball’s historical five positions (whittled down from the 13 positions in his original research), Alagappan lists these 10 as the player groupings:
Role-Playing Big Men
Rim-Attacking Defensive Ball-Handlers
A: Read it. Definitely think it is silly we have clustered into 5 positions for sorting traditional stats.
People, please stop downvoting everyone else in the thread. It's not very considerate.
Hopefully Daryl Morey will have a chance to get to lots of questions. There's no need to downvote others just to give yourself a minor advantage.
Join me in upvoting all of the good questions in this thread to make this thread more friendly.
A: Stop this nonsense. I need more genital questions.
I found this picture floating around that suggests you fancy yourself a good table tennis player, do you think you could beat all other NBA execs and players at table tennis?
A: Rich Cho (Charlotte GM) and I are the best in the league at table tennis. I beat him last year, he got me this year. Bob Weiss and Rick Carlisle are the other good players.
Q: In your opinion, who are the best run small market teams in the league?
A: Tampa Bay Rays are the best run small market team
Q: Which team in the West do you think will be the biggest threat to your Rockets?
A: I think Oklahoma City is the best team when healthy
Q: What can you tell me about Sam Hinkie, his background, and his work ethic?
A: I suggest the New Yorker article
Q: When you go on the road to Toronto, Dallas, or other stadiums that use camera-tracking technology, do those teams provide the raw data to you, and when they come to Houston, do you provide the raw data to them?
A: The raw data is shared among all teams with the cameras installed
Q: Hi Daryl three questions
1. How do you feel about the blog post made by Steve Kerr about the draft system for the NBA?
2. Who will be the final three teams in both conferences to make the playoffs?
3. Are you surprised by the lack of playing time Lamb got with the thunder this season?
A: I promised myself I won't get fined on this AMA. I think I may not be allowed to comment directly on this. I do think the overwhelming rewards to losing teams that is currently in place in the NBA is something we need to work on and has solutions that are reasonable.
Q: You can sign into a throwaway account and tell us how you really feel Daryl! Darylmoreythrowaway123 is still available.
A: My secret exposed...
Q: Do you think that making dramatic roster moves with the aim of acquiring a high choice in the 2014 NBA draft is appropriate (ala the 76ers) or do you think that these draft picks may be the victims of their own hype and have in fact become overvalued?
A: 76ers certainly don't need my help but I think they are taking exactly the correct approach given the context of their team and the CBA/draft rules currently in place.
Q: I know the organization must be really excited about your huge, big name free agent signing this summer of Omri Casspi. I was wondering what his role will be this season and how you plan on building around him going forward.
A: I think Omri is finally getting a chance to show how good he can be. Unless you are one of the very top players in the league, the NBA is mostly about skills matching roles. I don't think Omri has had a good role fit yet and I think his skills are significant. We shall see.
Q: How will you fit in Harden and Asik next year with T-Will in the lineup?
A: T-Will is a very good ball distributor so I don't see an issue. Wait, I see what you just did there...
Q: Recently, NBA fan circles have labeled you as the mastermind behind a new method of building a contending team - a strategy roughly referred to as "stockpiling assets" through trades and signings that create value. This is opposed to the traditional process of "tanking"(deliberately or not) for top draft picks. Most fans of rebuilding teams are interested in any strategy that avoids years of painful losing, and I have some questions to flesh out this strategy.
1. What kind of intersection is there between advanced statistical analytics (which you and the rockets have used to craft your current roster) and your overall strategy of stockpiling assets through value-adding trades and signings? For example, how common is searching for undervalued "diamond in the rough" players in your operations?
2. As a die-hard Charlotte Horncats fan, I want to know what you think about the current state of our organization. Are the moves we have made lately (the Al Jefferson signing in particular) consistent with a "stockpiling assets" strategy? What do you think is the best path for our organization?
A: 1. we do this all the time
2. I think that given current CBA/draft rules that "bottoming out" is the highest probability strategy. We obviously had to be well prepared to make the moves to hopefully turn the corner this season but we also needed a healthy amount of good fortune that Harden would be available in trade & Dwight in free agency at the right times.
Q: I've heard you are a supporter of e-sports. Do you see it growing and becoming recognized as a legitimate sport?
How do you feel the addition of Dwight will affect Jeremy Lin?
As a team competing in an already stacked western conference, how far do you think your team will go?
A: I think eSports is going to be the biggest sport in the world. I just can't tell you when.
Q: What'd you say to Dwight in the meeting? What were your main points?
A: 1. You need multiple elite players to win titles and James Harden is an elite player. You will be on a contending team.
2. We have the most draft picks, free agency $$, and young players to improve the team going forward among the teams he was choosing from
3. Coach McHale
Q: How do you feel about losing Gersson Rosas to the Dallas Mavericks? What does he bring to the Mavs and what did you lose from the Rockets? Thanks for doing this!
A: Sucks. He is very good.
Q: Do you ever secretly post on ClutchFans?
A: No, just lurk
Q: I was actually planning on sending out a letter to you but will ask through here instead!
I'm a big admirer of what you've been able to do with the Rockets without(ignore the flair, I'm not mad that you were able to sign Dwight). I'm unhappy at my current job and want to move on to something else. I have an Economics degree and did well in some Econometrics courses although I've forgotten most of what I've learned. I've always been a huge basketball fan and would love to work for the NBA or a team in some capacity but have no idea what I would be able to do. I noticed you guys posted an internship opening for Basketball operations and I sent in an application just for the heck of it even though I'm way under-qualified.
I'm just wondering, do you have any advice if I want to take a peek into basketball analytics and see if it will be something for me? Anything would help, whether it is books, articles or just general advice.
In case Daryl doesn't answer this, I'll try and be of some help, as I've gone through the interview process for a few NBA front office positions (and am currently pretty deep into such a process right now).
Lean SQL and everything databases.
Lean how to program.
Be a basketball junky. Read the apbrmetric forums in particular.
These jobs are really, really hard to get. You don't have to be a perfect fit skillset wise, but they're tremendously competitive openings, they pay poorly, and they typically start you off pretty low in the front office pecking order. If none of that bothers you and you think you can acquire the types of skills they're looking for, go for it.
A: That is better than my answer would have been. I struggle answering these questions as my path was so unconventional. I would also say that you need to get very good at whatever the next big trend will be. Maybe genetics like Mark Cuban thinks.
Q: Just wanted to say thanks for doing this AMA, and I look forward to you or any of your Rockets players doing an AMA here (please? Maybe make it part of their contracts?) in the near future.
A: Not Jeremy Lin as he has really changed
Q: Hi Mr. Morey, can you please give Jeremy back to us?
A: Sorry he is a Rocket now and also there is nothing to give
Q: Daryl, How often do you hang out with the teammates and spend time with them? Who's the funniest one to be around and why?
A: Funniest right now is probably Aaron Brooks or Donatas. Yao Ming is the all time funniest.
Q: How seriously did you take that ping pong match versus Jeremy? You seemed locked in!
A: I am always serious at winning even when it creates comedy for others
Q: What do you project from the youngsters and vet's minimum signings? Who do you foresee as the starting PF, and who do you predict will step into the sixth man role?
A: We will need them to contribute. Donatas or Terrence Jones likely starting at PF.
Q: Firstly, congrats on making a kick ass team.
I always wondered what type of point guard is more valuable: a score first point guard (Like Rose, Westbrook) or a pass first point (Nash, Paul). Personally, I always felt that the former were just smaller shooting guards, and that they don’t help the rest of the team as much as the former.
Do you (Or anybody on the Rockets, I suppose) believe that one style is more preferable than the other? Or is it merely based on what the rest of the team is like?
A: Really depends on context but I prefer all 5 players to be offensive threats at all times so I know I prefer score first PGs more than most teams.
Q: Fondest memory of your time in the Celtics organization?
A: Red Auerbach puffing away in the corner of our draft room one year
Q: Last AMA, you said you keep up-to-date on the main Rockets websites, like The Dream Shake, Clutchfans, and *****. How big of a part of your job is gauging the fan reaction? Has there ever been a time when the fan reaction to something surprised you?
A: Fan reaction I am not very interested in. Fan ideas I am. Fans don't surprise me too often -- we have smart fans.
Q: Mr. Morey, thanks for the taking time to do this AMA. Do you think Google glass could ever be integrated into live games, for example by having the officials wear them and letting the TV audience see what they saw?
A: This is a great idea! Tell Adam Silver. I have to run, thank you for all the great questions!
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