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News » ROCKETS SUMMARY 2009-05-20


Wafer a free agent

With Von Wafer a free agent again, he said he hopes to be done seeking a new home, preferring to stick with the Rockets , his fifth team in four NBA seasons.

"I hope I'll be back," Wafer said. "I love Houston, I love this organization. They gave me a chance, so I'd love to be back."

Wafer had by far his most productive NBA season, averaging 9.7 points (his previous best was an average of 1.7 points) on 44.7 percent shooting.

Back to work

Though Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said the team's front office will have to move quickly on draft and free-agent preparations, he does not expect to quickly get over the Game 7 loss that sent the Rockets from postseason to offseason Sunday.

"I think it will linger," Morey said. "We got it to Game 7. You feel like you're going to get a shot when you get there. So that will linger.

"We didn't give ourselves a shot, so that will linger. But you don't have time to linger in this job. They don't switch the draft or the free-agency period just because we're in the playoffs."

Offensive woes linger

The Rockets made just 36.8 percent of their shots Sunday, offering one more reminder of their frequent struggles offensively.

In the four losses in the series, they made just 39 percent of their shots. In the three wins, they shot 47.4 percent.

"You look at the stat sheet; it wasn't like they had a fantastic offensive game," Rockets coach Rick Adelman said. "We were just poor on our offensive end, which was one of our problems all year long.

"When we struggled, it was our offense more than anything else. And when we did get some shots, nothing was going down."

The Rockets missed their first 12 shots and their first eight from beyond the 3-point arc.

"Today was no different than our road struggles all along," Shane Battier said. "We just had poor movement and when we have poor movement, it is difficult to get open looks.

"We tried to get isolation, and isolation wasn't working against this team. So the lack of ball movement, which was our problem all year on the road, was our problem today."

Coming up big

Lakers coach Phil Jackson was pleased with the play of his big men in Sunday's series-clinching win.

Starting center Andrew Bynum came alive and scored 14 points, and fellow 7-footer Pau Gasol had a monster game with 21 points and 18 rebounds.

"We had a lot of faith in (them)," Jackson said. "I let them go right in to make sure the Rockets had pressure put on them and that with that collapse we could get other things off them, like shots.

"We thought that they would double-team to get some help and because they were short-handed that it would be a foul situation. Pau and Drew both played well in segments of the game offensively, but they did a really good job defensively."

Not happy

Rockets guard Ron Artest said the experience of getting out of the first round and taking the Lakers to a seventh game showed the growth in a young squad, even though he considered the series loss a personal failure.

Artest averaged 14.2 points on 40 percent shooting in the series. In the final four games, he averaged just 9.5 points, and he scored seven points on 3-of-10 shooting on Sunday.

"Individually, it's a failure for me," Artest said. "I just really cannot say that about this team. I can't say that about these guys. With this team we have, there really is no reason we should have advanced. There really is no reason I shouldn't have done better."

Lakers win series 4-3

Gm. Result Top scorer Top rebounder

1 Rockets 100, Lakers 92 Bryant 32 Gasol 13

2 Lakers 111, Rockets 98 Bryant 40 Gasol 14

3 Lakers 108, Rockets 94 Bryant 33 Yao 14

4 Rockets 99, Lakers 87 Brooks 34 Scola 14

5 Lakers 118, Rockets 78 Bryant 26 Gasol, Scola 13

6 Rockets 95, Lakers 80 Bryant 32 Odom 14

7 Lakers 89, Rockets 70 Gasol 21 Gasol 18

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: May 20, 2009


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