Monday, February 9, 2009

In a losing streak, locker room warts are more apparent

It's been an up-and-down start of the year for the Rockets, who are 10-8 since January 1.  HOU has won three of its last four.

But Rockets coach Rick Adelman, who's been an NBA head coach for 20 years, can sense that something's not right:

"I see things," Coach Adelman said. "I've been doing this a long time. There's not too much that slides past me, body language, comments, whatever. Once you've seen it over and over and over again, you get a pretty good sense right off the bat. That's why it's important as coaches, we keep trying to talk to them about it. I think it's important as a team that individually, they talk to each other about it. You're going to have times throughout the year you're going to have guys irritated or whatever. It's important it does not carry over and stay and fester. That's what I keep trying to tell them." 

According to Shane Battier, team chemistry is a fragile thing:

"A locker room is always a few wins away from being a good locker room, a few losses away from being a good locker room.  All the bad things, the warts, are much more apparent in a losing streak or a bad streak and the flaws are not as apparent when you're winning a few games. We've had some tough losses. We want to look at the warts."

During his two decades as an NBA head coach, Coach Adelman says he's "seen a lot of teams where it starts going separate ways and before you know it, it's splintering here and there."

His advice is to "keep a positive mental attitude and you have to trust each other or it's never going to work. I've seen it happen the other way. It's important that they keep that mindset, especially with all the things that have gone in and out with us all year long."

"I don't know what they're waiting for. I'm not waiting for it. I've said it so many times to them; 'What kind of season do you want. It's up to you. You stay together. You get better. You stay consistent and you start getting better at a team. Or if you have a tough game, you start pointing fingers and you look at each other and you say this guy is not doing it. That's not going to get us there. You have to do it as a team."