Kevin McHale Comments on James Harden, Being Fired by Rockets

February 9th, 2016 by Tyler Conway Leave a reply »

Speaking candidly for the first time since being fired in November, former Houston Rockets head coach Kevin McHale said he was "really, really surprised" to be let go in an interview with TNT's Inside the NBA.

Adam Wexler of KPRC-TV Sports captured McHale's comments. The Rockets unceremoniously dumped the Hall of Fame forward 11 games into the 2015-16 season despite McHale having led the team to a Western Conference Finals berth the year prior. Houston was 4-7 at the time.

"We got off to a tough start and I came in and I sat down [and] they said 'You're fired.' I went 'oof.' It really, really surprised me," McHale said, per Wexler.

Given that the Rockets are only 23-19 under interim head coach J.B. Bickerstaff, it's clear at this point McHale wasn't the root of the problem. They rank 24th in defensive efficiency, a complete 180-degree turn from their sixth-place finish in 2014-15. Some of the blame has been placed at the feet of guard James Harden, who has succumbed to his worst instincts after making significant improvements during his MVP runner-up campaign.

McHale offered up the team's injury issues as a ...

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