The Houston Rockets have gotten back on track after a shaky start, winning four out of five games before losing to the Mavericks on Wednesday. But Mavs owner Mark Cuban says the Rockets may be feeling a bit too good about themselves.
Back in July, after Dwight Howard signed a four-year maximum contract with the Rockets, Houston general manager Daryl Morey sent Cuban a text message asking if Dallas forward Dirk Nowitzki would be available via trade. Of course, there was no chance the Mavs would trade Nowitzki to the Rockets, an in-state rival, so Cuban considered Morey’s message to be a not-so-subtle attempt to twist the knife of signing Howard, whom the Mavs coveted.
“Definitely, and I don’t blame them,” Cuban told reporters on Friday. “That’s fine. But payback is a bitch.”
Despite the big move, the Rockets trail the Mavericks by a game in the Southwest Division standings after Dallas took the victory on Wednesday. Once the Rockets beat out the Mavericks for Howard, the Mavs got busy building a roster of lower-cost players like Jose Calderon, Monta Ellis and DeJuan Blair that has helped Dallas post the sixth-best record in the Western Conference.