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D'Antoni ends Rockets contract talks



Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni has ended talks with management on a contract extension, league sources customs ESPN.

D'Antoni plans to complete the final season of his deal in 2019-20 – which could become a pathway to his own free agency the next year.

D'Antoni's agent Warren LeGarie informed Rockets general manager Daryl Morey of the coach's decision on Thursday afternoon, sources said.

There were conversations constructed around the Rockets idea of ​​a performance-based extension, but those never gained traction with D'Antoni's camp, sources said.

The successes in D'Antoni's three years on the job – four Western Conference series of victories, a conference finals appearance and an NBA coach of the year award – led D'Antoni to believe that a potential extension would follow the more traditional guaranteed framework of comparable coaching peers.

The Rockets are a fr anchoring a flux, with an entire roster available in trade talks and two high-profile assistant coaches recently assigned by the organization that they would not have brought back next season. had hoped to coach at least three more years.

"I've let (GM) Daryl (Morey) and (owner) Tilman (Fertitta) know that I'm energized to keep coaching – and believe that I can continue to do this at a high level at least another three years, "D'Antoni customs ESPN.

" I want to be part of a championship here. "

D'Antoni is entering the final year of his original four-year contract.

Fertitta called the Rockets loss in the Western Conference semifinals to the Golden State Warriors, "unacceptable." Top assistant Jeff Bzdelik – who was talked out of retirement in November to address the team's defense – and respected league assistant Roy Rogers weren't brought back for next season by management.

D'Antoni has averaged 58 victories a year in his three seasons with the Rockets, including four playoff series victories and a trip to Game 7 of the 2018 Western Conference Finals. The Golden State Warriors eliminated the Rockets in the past two seasons, including a six-game victory in the semifinals conference this month.


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